Wednesday, October 17, 2012

get got


Raoul: It makes things feel small.

me: so small.
The things my coworkers were harping on in this morning's staff meeting, the frustrations, the stupid shit? I wanted to scream.

Raoul: It's all irrelevant. It's just minor details in a massively grand scheme.
But you can't see all of it all the time. It drives you mad. Which is why moments like these - losing someone, near-death experiences, stepping on the TARDIS - lay you bare for a while.
Nothing feels substantial. But it passes.
Regardless. He is a fool to pass you up. And you're armed and ready to move on. You've got enough on your plate to move forward with.

me: "Nothing feels substantial" is an excellent way of putting it
and because of that feeling, I'm having extreme difficulty putting anything into words
which, as you know, lends itself to even further confusion and restlessness
so life becomes one robotic foot in front of the other, until some semblance of substance returns

I miss writing. My brain is fuzzy, and my heart is aching, and everything feels small. There's an old saying that some attribute to heartland farmers and others claim is Yiddish; I'm not sure where I heard it first, but it succinctly describes my life of late:


Sometimes you get, and sometimes you get got.


Lord, and 2012 isn't even over. Hold me.

- - -

I've been exchanging emails for the past few months with JB. I think "friend" is the best way to describe him, now. I told him about a situation in which I'd found myself, and he told me, "Lauren, you've always been incredibly strong. By this point you've been through a lot, and yet none of it has successfully stopped you from caring. So there's the proof. You're strong. Tough."

- - -

I felt giddy all day at work. I was excited, happy for the first time all week. I'd been feeling dragged down, and here, suddenly back to life, I bounced around the office. I got to know our intern, stepped away from my desk for some writing, talked a lot with a coworker. I cracked open a beer and talked to friends. It was one of the best, most productive days in a long time, and it felt so good that I even stayed late. I came home to the wonderful smells of baking bread and tortilla soup filling our house, and the girls and I started preparing for some friends to come over before the concert. The next few hours were a blur of laughter, glitter glue, rhinestones, miniskirts, photographs, and friends. We listened to 80s music, drank wine, and danced around the living room.

I stood there, hairspray-stuck ponytail swinging around, and remembered the last time A and I danced to 80s music in the living room: Mom had called and told me to turn off the music, stop dancing, sit down, Grandma had another stroke and a heart attack, she's back at the hospital, she's stabilized, they're trying to figure out what happened.

I told myself that wouldn't happen this time. I went into my room and took off her ring and put it safely in the yellow box on my nightstand; I didn't want it to slip off in a fit of trying to be Molly Ringwald at the concert later. We piled into G's car and stumbled into a happy blur of our favorite 80s songs, dancing, screaming, and eventual exhaustion.

- - -

I don't know how I started answering the phone in my sleep; I suppose I could point to late-night texts and calls from JS that I always wanted to wake up to answer. I hadn't gotten into bed until 2 AM, and not to sleep until after JS and I had talked, maybe near 3 AM. I squinted my eyes at the robot ringtone and saw "Dad" on the too-bright screen. I don't know how but before long the phone was flat on my cheek, disconnected from its charger, answered. I managed a muffled "'Lo?" 

He took a deep breath and then let out, quickly but clearly, "Lauren. I'm so sorry to tell you this, but your Grandmother passed away tonight..." He stopped. I stopped. Everything stopped. "Your mother texted you, I think. You should call her." 

I don't know when the tears started; I talked to Mom, to Boo. I called JS twice and texted him "Please call me" when he didn't answer. He showed up around 6AM with a pint of ice cream and a box of tissues. I texted Yoga Bear and he called me; to this day I can't find words to describe how comforting his voice was to my soul. 

Then I remembered that I'd taken off my ring. I called Mom, screaming with tears, "It's my fault!" "Lauren. You're being ridiculous. You need to stop this. It's not your fault. It's no one's fault."

I collapsed, weary from tears, into JS's arms and slept all day.

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