Some things come and some things go.
I hear the words bubble up from that other place over the course of a few days, days that leave impressions on my mind like marks against my skin, my feet swollen from a walk around the block. I sometimes dream about backbones and hip bones the way people dream about anything they are kept from. I am told to make peace with my body. A body is not just a body. But you can love something and still want more from it.
I am pinned like a butterfly beneath the glass. A line from high school passes over my lips, A push pin through my sternum, I spent a long year under glass. I still listen to Dessa as loud as I can in my car alone or on the longest leg of a road trip to keep myself awake, her words imbedded into my person in those places where no one else can go. I am asked what inspired me to start writing. I know my answer before the question is finished being asked.
I join a conversation, interview, recording, gathering, online in which me and another writer are the conversation. She a new mother and me on the brink, she often speaks to me from the future of what is in store and who we might be because of all this; who we become when we are split open and raked over the coals, pushed to an edge you did not even know are there until you reach for it in the night. Others listen to us talk about our writing life and it is nice to be reminded of who I am. I hardly recognize myself, and they have to do it for me. I am more grateful for this than I am able to share. She tells me plainly and truthfully that I am in between identities. She says it in a way that is clear when you are three turns ahead. In a way that I will come to understand. In a way that I know is true.
I say I do not not know what to write, and it is because of exactly this. I am held between two worlds, pinned beneath that glass. I no longer can write about the things that once pained me, they no longer wake me up in the night. The men I once loved are just that, men I once loved, and I love them for that. But, the girl they loved doesn’t live here anymore. She is back where they remember her. She has hip bones and a drink order and a lot to say. I am soft and quiet in all of the places I was once loud and sharp. And somehow this too has to be okay. I have to find something else to say, something else to write about, someone else to be now. How do we do this? How do we find ourselves again? Remake a voice in the new image of who we become and how do we change in all of the ways life asks us to?
I know I must try and write about these waiting days, simply to preserve them, to put them on the record. We will never be here again. You and I in one body. We will never be this quiet, this singular, this still. What can I tell you about waiting at the brink of motherhood? I can tell you that mother is an abstraction, saved only for those who venture into that world. It is something I can think of but cannot grasp. I am naive enough to try and yet brave enough to know that I can. This process is so animal like. The preparation, the gathering, the waiting, the stocking, the pacing, the sleeping. I make a home in a home in a home.
What can I tell you about these days? They are equal in their wait of patience and anticipation. Two sides of the same coin. In these days I drink cold sweet coffee and the mornings are so beautiful I have the sense I don’t deserve them. I cut the tip of my thumb with a knife I bought in Japan and a searing pain rushed through my body, but all I could wonder was if he felt it too. I went to see an acupuncturist and he took one look at me and said, you think too much. I laughed because if anyone knows me at all they know this is true. He told me I think too much and it makes you cold. We lie under red light with pins in my legs and I apologize, it’s just the way I am. If today is the day, I would tell you later that I woke up slowly and the water and the sky were mirrored blue of one another and I was too big to sit in my usual chair and write. I would tell you I was ready and I was not ready, and still life comes for us. Some things come and some things go.
image by Katch Silva