Jan. 3rd, 2017

omnia_mutantur: (Default)
Another piece of writing from my memoir class. My intention is to try to post every day, and some days it'll be brandy new stuff and sometimes it'll be bits from memoir class, which was another different and interesting exercise in how I try to shape my words for my audience (or try to deliberately not shape them)

**

When​ ​you​ ​start​ ​in​ ​the​ ​middle​ ​looking​ ​forwards​ ​and​ ​looking​ ​backwards​ ​become​ ​equally  compelling​ ​options,​ ​but​ ​both​ ​require​ ​firmer​ ​footing​ ​than​ ​I​ ​have.​ ​I​ ​see​ ​my​ ​memories​ ​time​ ​out of​ ​joint,​ ​but​ ​mine​ ​is​ ​never​ ​going​ ​to​ ​be​ ​to​ ​put​ ​it​ ​right.​ ​​ ​I’m​ ​no​ ​Hamlet,​ ​and​ ​I​ ​don't​ ​think​ ​I​ ​can,  and​ ​I’m​ ​not​ ​sure​ ​I​ ​believe​ ​in​ ​right​ ​anymore.​ ​Beads​ ​on​ ​a​ ​string,​ ​and​ ​the​ ​string​ ​broken,​ ​and  half​ ​the​ ​beads​ ​under​ ​the​ ​kitchen​ ​stove​ ​and​ ​the​ ​other​ ​half​ ​in​ ​a​ ​box,​ ​awaiting​ ​restringing​ ​but  no​ ​one​ ​has​ ​enough​ ​focus​ ​so​ ​to​ ​do. 
  
I​ ​want​ ​to​ ​tell​ ​a​ ​story,​ ​I​ ​want​ ​to​ ​make​ ​narrative​ ​out​ ​of​ ​this,​ ​I​ ​want​ ​everything​ ​to​ ​lead​ ​up​ ​to​ ​a  blinding​ ​sense​ ​of​ ​now.​ ​I​ ​want​ ​to​ ​show​ ​how​ ​I​ ​got​ ​here​ ​and​ ​maybe​ ​if​ ​I​ ​can​ ​see​ ​how​ ​I​ ​got​ ​here,​ ​I can​ ​see​ ​where​ ​to​ ​go​ ​next,​ ​or​ ​how​ ​to​ ​go​ ​home.​ ​​ ​​ ​I​ ​want​ ​life​ ​to​ ​be​ ​a​ ​game​ ​of​ ​chess,​ ​and​ ​if​ ​I​ ​can  see​ ​well​ ​enough​ ​into​ ​the​ ​past,​ ​I’ll​ ​be​ ​able​ ​to​ ​predict​ ​all​ ​the​ ​next​ ​moves​ ​and​ ​then​ ​I’ll​ ​be​ ​safe. 
 
My​ ​mother​ ​and​ ​my​ ​father​ ​(and​ ​at​ ​least​ ​one​ ​of​ ​my​ ​brothers)​ ​are​ ​so​ ​committed​ ​to​ ​the  narrative​ ​of​ ​bland​ ​and​ ​happy​ ​families​ ​that​ ​they​ ​rewrite​ ​stories​ ​entirely,​ ​and​ ​I​ ​was​ ​never​ ​left  outside​ ​in​ ​a​ ​parking​ ​lot​ ​after​ ​being​ ​told​ ​I​ ​was​ ​difficult​ ​to​ ​love,​ ​I​ ​didn’t​ ​ever​ ​get​ ​told​ ​to​ ​stop  waking​ ​them​ ​up​ ​with​ ​my​ ​crying,​ ​I​ ​wasn’t​ ​ever​ ​told​ ​I​ ​was​ ​always​ ​going​ ​to​ ​be​ ​a​ ​quitter.​ ​​ ​​ ​So​ ​I don’t​ ​trust​ ​what​ ​I​ ​remember. 
  
I​ ​started​ ​drinking​ ​the​ ​summer​ ​after​ ​eighth​ ​grade,​ ​sneaking​ ​wine​ ​coolers,​ ​sneaking​ ​vodka  into​ ​Snapple​ ​bottles​ ​of​ ​fruit​ ​punch.​ ​​ ​​ ​I​ ​drank​ ​slowly​ ​but​ ​steadily​ ​through​ ​most​ ​of​ ​my​ ​high  school​ ​experience,​ ​I​ ​kept​ ​this​ ​awful​ ​tupperware​ ​tumbler​ ​of​ ​mixed​ ​hard​ ​liquor​ ​in​ ​my​ ​desk, using​ ​moments​ ​alone​ ​to​ ​replenish​ ​it​ ​with​ ​a​ ​little​ ​bit​ ​of​ ​everything​ ​I​ ​could​ ​reach.​ ​​ ​​ ​Fifteen  years​ ​later,​ ​helping​ ​my​ ​parents​ ​move​ ​I​ ​got​ ​to​ ​re-handle​ ​some​ ​of​ ​the​ ​bottles​ ​in​ ​the​ ​back​ ​of​ ​the  liquor​ ​cabinet,​ ​old​ ​friends​ ​probably​ ​all​ ​more​ ​water​ ​than​ ​alcohol.​ ​​ ​​ ​I​ ​drank​ ​beer​ ​at​ ​parties,  but​ ​I​ ​wasn’t​ ​a​ ​girl​ ​who​ ​was​ ​going​ ​to​ ​try​ ​to​ ​be​ ​someone​ ​who​ ​liked​ ​beer​ ​for​ ​another​ ​decade​ ​or  so.​ ​​ ​​ ​College​ ​brought​ ​me​ ​even​ ​more​ ​accessible​ ​alcohol​ ​and​ ​it​ ​would​ ​take​ ​me​ ​a​ ​couple​ ​years  to​ ​really​ ​settle​ ​into​ ​my​ ​Keystone​ ​Lite​ ​and​ ​Jack​ ​Daniels​ ​habits.​ ​​ ​​ ​The​ ​immediate​ ​effect​ ​being  blackout​ ​drunk,​ ​the​ ​long​ ​term​ ​effect​ ​having​ ​something​ ​to​ ​do​ ​with​ ​combining​ ​Zoloft​ ​with​ ​a  whole​ ​lot​ ​of​ ​booze.​ ​​ ​​ ​So​ ​I​ ​don’t​ ​trust​ ​what​ ​I​ ​remember. 
  
But​ ​I​ ​do​ ​remember​ ​things,​ ​and​ ​I​ ​am​ ​here.​ ​​ ​And​ ​maybe​ ​there​ ​are​ ​enough​ ​pieces,​ ​enough  breadcrumbs,​ ​enough​ ​beads​ ​to​ ​explain​ ​to​ ​you,​ ​to​ ​me,​ ​why​ I​ ​am​ ​this​ ​way,​ ​why​ ​I​ ​got​ ​my breasts​ ​chopped​ ​off,​ ​why​ ​I​ ​didn’t​ ​end​ ​up​ ​dead.  
  
My​ ​story​ ​is​ ​cluttered​ ​with​ ​people,​ ​and​ ​maybe​ ​I​ ​should​ ​try​ ​to​ ​make​ ​pictures​ ​out​ ​of​ ​the  details,​ ​instead​ ​of​ ​trying​ ​to​ ​show​ ​why​ ​I​ ​nicknamed​ ​Iceberg​ Iceberg​ ​when​ ​I​ ​wrote​ ​about​ ​him  (Elizabeth​ ​Bishop)​ ​or​ ​how​ ​Teach and​ ​I​ ​found​ ​each​ ​other​ ​and​ ​how​ ​we​ ​left​ ​each​ ​other,​ ​or​ ​how  Braids​ ​broke​ ​my​ ​heart​ ​more​ ​thoroughly​ ​than​ ​any​ ​two​ ​week​ ​relationship​ ​ever​ ​should have​ ​been​ ​able​ ​to​ ​or​ ​how​ ​I​ ​knew​ ​I​ ​was​ ​going​ ​to​ ​marry​ ​Light​ ​the​ ​moment​ ​I​ ​saw​ ​him​ ​in​ ​the  lobby​ ​of​ ​the​ ​hotel.  
  
I​ ​suppose​ ​I’ll​ ​restart​ ​this​ ​many​ ​times,​ ​come​ ​back​ ​to​ ​the​ ​beginning​ ​and​ ​find​ ​new​ ​angles​ ​to​ ​try  to​ ​get​ ​to​ ​the​ ​same​ ​point,​ ​to​ ​be​ ​lesson​ ​or​ ​warning​ ​or​ ​comfort​ ​or​ ​contrast.​ ​​ ​I​ ​used​ ​to​ ​think​ ​that  things​ ​had​ ​many​ ​beginnings,​ ​but​ ​only​ ​one​ ​end.​ ​​ ​Even​ ​that​ ​seems​ ​too​ ​tidy​ ​now,​ ​and​ ​I’m​ ​full​ ​of  sloppier​ ​boundaries,​ ​stories​ ​that​ ​bleed​ ​into​ ​each​ ​other.  
  
The​ ​truth,​ ​a​ ​truth,​ ​is​ ​that​ ​I​ ​trace​ ​my​ ​life​ ​from​ ​crisis​ ​to​ ​crisis.​ ​​ ​A​ ​truth​ ​is​ ​that​ ​I​ ​trace​ ​my​ ​life  from​ ​loss​ ​to​ ​loss.​ ​​ ​I’ve​ ​given​ ​up​ ​smoking,​ ​drinking,​ ​self-harm,​ ​an​ ​eating​ ​disorder,​ ​drinking  coffee,​ ​drinking​ ​soda.​ ​​ ​I’ve​ ​given​ ​up​ ​a​ ​front​ ​tooth,​ ​my​ ​ovaries​ ​and​ ​my​ ​breasts.​ ​​ ​​ ​I’ve​ ​lost  friends​ ​and​ ​partners,​ ​I’ve​ ​lost​ ​six​ ​different​ ​kinds​ ​of​ ​faith,​ ​and​ ​even​ ​more​ ​kinds​ ​of​ ​nerve. 
  
I’ve​ ​learned​ ​I​ ​can’t​ ​ever​ ​control​ ​where​ ​my​ ​brain​ ​goes,​ ​but​ ​I​ ​can​ ​control​ ​some​ ​of​ ​my  behaviors,​ ​and​ ​so​ ​I​ ​spend​ ​my​ ​energy​ ​there,​ ​trying​ ​to​ ​be​ ​this​ ​calm​ ​and​ ​coherent​ ​woman,  trying​ ​to​ ​be​ ​amused​ ​by​ ​just​ ​about​ ​everything,​ ​but​ ​even​ ​more​ ​amused​ ​at​ ​my​ ​own​ ​antics.  And​ ​I​ ​worry,​ ​so​ ​often,​ ​about​ ​so​ ​many​ ​things.  
 
 

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