Thursday, July 8, 2010

What Do You Want From Me?

As the blog has newly been relaunched, I feel like... brand new. I never go back and look at old posts, mostly because I will feel extremely self-conscious about the things that I write. Good and Catholic, you don't rehash the grief you feel over your cousin's death. You're supposed to just let it be. Overrun you like a kind of ferocious weed until you're consumed and immobilized it.

That's the polite thing to do.

I'm tired of being polite.

But I have to ask... what do you want from me?

I'm a nice, good girl. But that hasn't served me so far. Now I want to write posts that help me take apart my grief, not just of my cousin's death and Mom's illness but all that's been lost from that. While I was busy being a puddle on the floor... so much was lost. But now, I want to lay it out, like when a mechanic is fixing a Vintage car, and examine and inspect and then fix all the things that are broken...

And then put it back together.

I think that's the only way you become free from things.

I just wonder - because I'm a self-diagnosed people pleaser - is that what you want from me? I like this being a give and take, I love your comments, I love that this blog is something you relate to and I don't want you to be disappointed when you read a post.

I notice when I write something honest, truthful, raw, people will read... one person read for 171 minutes last week... but hardly anyone will comment. No comments as others read for 5, 10, 20 minutes.

"What are they thinking? Am I too much?" I am too much for them? I am. I am made of scary little scars that are all on the inside. I should only write happy posts. Put a smile on it. Keep the uncertainty on the inside. That would be for the best.

Who am I doing this for? I thought I was doing it for me. But maybe I'm really doing it for you.

So what do you want from me?

No, really, I'll do it. But you have to tell me. Do you want to talk about figuring your life out after it's thrown you a maddeningly huge gut punch? Can I talk about my cousin's death? Does it make you feel uncomfortable? Sometimes I think you guys think I have it more together than I do. It might be my fault. Sometimes, I'm very rah-rah. I need to tone that down a bit.

All of this started to gently cross my mind as I opened a Facebook and Twitter page for the blog. A lot of people started following me and I think I became shy... a little freaked out. To combat the uncomfortableness of that, I have to be witty, asurbic, sarcastic.

You wouldn't know the girl who writes on that Twitter account writes here. That girl is the me with the mask. She hides behind a wall, she dangles a sparkly ball to distract you from cousin's who are murdered and lives that are turned upside town and cousin's that have brain cancer and life choices that will break your heart and mother's that are sick and court cases and do we go for the death penalty?

Maybe going for the death penalty would be impolite.

I'm wrestling with this... I know people like me on Twitter but that girl... she's having a ball but she's not going to grow and change. She's not going to make the big decisions that I am determined to make this year - I think I want to leave Los Angeles. I think I want a new job. I know I want to live without so much fear and responsibility.

My cousin has brain cancer now.

I want to do the things he's wishing he did. And that is either the most brutally honest thing I have ever said or the most damn selfish or maybe it can be both.

Everything, all these thoughts, doubts, feelings came swirling around yesterday when I read the most beautiful essay on grief by someone who had lost his daughter.

The author spoke of how, after you lose someone unexpectedly, you become consumed with fear.

"Maybe what I’ve learned more about, for better or worse, is fear. I think I can pretty comfortably say I understand fear. I’ve learned to understand fear in and out... I live in fear. I’ve learned how randomly things can go wrong, horribly wrong, and I fear that moment, I fear that moment coming into existence. Logic be damned, it terrifies me."

I found myself nodding, yes, yes. That's how I feel. In a matter of a few paragraphs, the author had boiled down exactly how I feel... a feeling that seems to elude me as I try to turn it into words.

When I am in that uncomfortable place, I gloss it over with a lot of humor. I'm straddling both worlds.

I haven't faced the deep dark fear like the author expresses. You have to be in club to get it. You don't want to be in the club. But it's when... if terrible things happen with no warning and they are so terrible and so terrifying and so unspeakable that just NO ONE will speak of them -- how to you ever feel safe again?

How do you not just completely collapse and fold in on yourself? So nothing can touch you. Or hurt you. Yes. This is deep. Does it scare you? Will you not love me if I speak of scary things?

I can tell you this: I have lived like that and I don't WANT to anymore. But it's like, after something truly bad happens, your blood gets stamped with the "fear" DNA and it just corses through you becoming part of your whole being.

I guess what I'm saying, (Get to it, girl), is I need to talk about those fears more. I know that is everything that is holding me back in life. It's like I have the knowledge that life is short, that you better live it now because Good God, how fast it can be gone in a day.

And that is in one hand. And in the other is what I am going to do with that knowledge. Every week, through an adventure, I am trying to move the needle as they say... push it closer to the life I want to live and away from the life of fear.

Do yo want to hear about that?

What do you want from me?