I'm wondering when do I stop settling and start making demands?
I don't know where that thought just sprung from but I do know exactly what I mean.
Here's an example:
Dan is addicted to his computer. Each morning, there may be a shower or a shave, maybe even some teeth brushing, but there is always the loving, delicate packing of his laptop into his bag before we head off to work.
You should see the careful motions he makes when wrapping the power cord and sheathing the laptop. It's never like how I do mine, where I haphazardly grab up the cord and jam it in my purse, wedging my computer in at any random angle. It usually thumps and thuds several times before settling in amongst my cell phone, keys, and Diet Coke bottle. Dan would never put a liquid near his computer. Never. I don't even blink at it.
At work he runs data and makes code do things that code should do and he talks about it with his co-workers and he beams about it to me on the phone or even in person. He tries hard to express how impressive this particular snippet of letters and numbers and symbols is. His words come out in droves, piling up one on top of the other like piglets trying desperately to douse themselves headfirst in their first trough-full of ground up corn shavings and pickle juice. His words are that luscious, that fragrant, that overwhelming, all about his code. Meanwhile, I'm on the spitting end getting this piglet gunk of code love all over me, and not only does it make very little sense, but at the beginning, middle or end of any of my days, his code stories are of very little interest to me, if not very much annoyance. If I'm feeling sporting, I'll listen and try to ask questions that make me seem like I'm trying to understand this beautiful and spiritual thing that is code. I'll be very good about not looking out the window or turning up the radio. But that's only if I'm feeling nice about it. Most days, I tune it out altogether or do the above mentioned things or 0ust settle in for a hypothetical thought about what if I were rollerskating to this song and I were really good and I joined a team. Then, of course, there are the worst days when I'm tired or upset or just sulky, and then I don't want to hear about anything that has to do with the meaningless drivel that is gushing out the wide, code-shaped hole in his heart. Of course, then I don't mince words, at the first utterance of PHP or CSS or whothefuckcares I tell him just that, "Who the fuck cares, Dan. I don't even know what you're talking about. I'm sure it's very interesting to you, but I just don't care." And then I'm the bitch of course. I'm the cunt I'm known to be in less than two seconds.
But I'm going to defend myself here because the point is I'm damn tired of feeling bad for being second to an inanimate object and its inanimate creations, inanimate fucking charms. Blah-blah-blah this is such typical girl bullshit where I feel like my husband has no time for me, but I'm sorry all people I am paranoid of judgment from, my husband isn't out saving lives or fighting fires or killing Iraqis or making millions of dollars for himself and others; he's out there pushing data around a call center and making the most menial of tasks more menial and 10 minutes less time consuming for the retard that gets paid 10 bucks an hour to do them. My dear's great passion, his #1, amounts to very little in his hands these days, and yet I'm second fiddle to it whenever the choice arises. I'm second to the program that randomly generates a birth date or a name or an expiration date for a credit card number. How the fuck is that supposed to make me feel?
So, let's talks about home. While he’s at work I can't really blame him for being into his job. I'm into my job; hell, I dedicate off hours and weekends to my job. But when I get home, even when I'm in my hotel far from home, I'm still thinking Dan. Where's my #1 and what's he up to? So the part that hates me for everything I am says, "Wow you're clingy and pathetic. You need to get a life. What a typical clingy, wifey you are." Yeah, it disgusts me. I wish I couldn’t give a shit. I wish I could put him second to something, anything. Religion, family, my dog, my car, my job, my health, anything. I've tried to do it. I've tried with writing, but writing and I have our own special relationship, and I really can't force that, so the only other thing that I could possibly care as much or more forced me into playing by its terms. But for Dan it's so simple to disconnect from me. He walks through the door after work, usually before me unless he condescends to let me pick him up, and goes through a similar ritual, except now he’s lovingly unpacking, loving unwinding. No, he doesn't come home and do work. He comes home and stumbles from web site to web site, with no goal in particular than finding something mildly amusing. More amusing than I could ever be. More amusing than any alive person could ever be.
Sometimes he does more productive things, like play World of Warcraft. This is a role-playing game where he can pretend to be a superhero with a different name and appearance and do all sorts of super cool super awesome super totally rad quests that make him the super greatest person on the fake earth. Let me just put in perspective for you right now. My husband would rather spend time pretending to be someone else in world that has never and will never exist than spend time with me. I'm #2 to even his fake life.
So where does that leave me? Frustrated. All the time. Lonely. All the time. Annoyed. All the time. I hate myself more because I find myself to be so utterly uninteresting to my husband. Fuck! I'm saying it: I'm not pretty enough or smart enough or cool enough or interesting enough to demand more interest than a 600 dollars worth of metal and plastic and a fake life.
But I try to be so good about it. Because I try to talk to him, and I've tried to walk away, and I've tried to be nice and be mean and be fake, and some work better than others so that for maybe even two or three weeks it's better. I feel like I've climbed the ladder, like I've taken space 1 back from all that un-aliveness. But after those weeks, it all goes back to normal. Back to how it should never be, and I am running out, have run out possibly, of things to try and to say, without resorting to bowing out for good.
So at this moment there's only one more thing left to say to him, left to ask him: "Why don't you ever talk about me, like you talk about code? Why don't you ever take care of me, like you take care of your computer? Why don't you ever look forward to me, like you look forward to your fake life?"
I know his answer: silence. And then I have to drop it or go from zero to cunt in 2 seconds. Ultimately, achieving nothing every time.
Cooked alive, Les Matter.
Eventually I'll stop caring. That's what I've been saying for six years. Can you believe it? Six years of that mantra running through my head. Wait it out; it's only a matter of time. Apparently that time is longer than six years. I'm tired of believing that I'll eventually stop caring. I'm through with the idea of having had enough heart-welling sadness at some point. I'm done. I've given in. I'm a sad, tired, pathetic clown that will never make sense of the miserable fact that one blighted day you decided to make yourself alive in my world, and since that day, you've made it impossible for me to ignore the ache in my lungs that comes from living with your memory. How about that? I've said it. Again and again.
I've been saying it for six years. So while everything in my life has changed around me. Everything. My mind still remains tethered, bound to the hope, stuck on the dream, tolling on some days louder than others: why didn't you love me like you were supposed to?
I can't make sense even if I try.
Nights like these I remember, Les Matter.
So whatever to that last post because I don't learn shit.
Kiss my gelatinous ass, Les Matter.
It's funny, the things that you will begin to accept as you become older and calmer--the diluted version of your former self. In youth, there is a phenomenon called certainty. To any question or problem, there is always an answer, a solution. There is always a right and there is always a wrong, and the gray area is just a thin line between those two poles, and there's not any room to dawdle there. As you get older and the wisdom of disappointment and failure illuminate the black and white to the point of being indiscernible from the gray, there is never a decision that comes without the lingering knowledge that there are several more ways than yours to be right and to be wrong and to be neither.
I think that the young are referred to as idealists because they cannot be cynical until they have lived failed expectation to the point of their own ruin. Well, I hope the young have not experienced that. I suppose then that is why as oldness comes it becomes easier to accept the ritual, the normal, the quintessential because the spontaneous, the beautiful, and the unbelievable never come up to full fruition. You realize that fantasy is alive longer and better when only in your mind, when it has not made the perilous jump from day-dream to hope. Not to say that hope is a fantasy, but rather to illustrate that hope is a tangible form of the all those things you want so badly to exist in your reality. Basically, hope is the kindling of expectation, and within expectation lies the danger of disappointment. So, the young are filled with hope and the old are filled with disappointment and the in betweens are somewhere in between.
As you begin to learn that there is nothing more real than what you know from experience, the self-righteous attitudes of your youth quell and retreat. You begin to grasp that there is no real understanding without experience, and that without experience there is only the fantasy and the hope and the expectation and ultimately the danger.
I am not fully wise, I know I will never be, but I am wiser. I am older. I am more mature if not any more responsible. I will judge myself always, but I will also give myself longer reign. I wish you would do the same for me, but that is an expectation that will not realize, so I am destined to be disappointed. Thus, I am wiser again.
Time to be small, Les Matter
Ursula said, "Thank god for getting through PMS without crying." I wish I could trumpet the same success. Alas.
The pummeling last night was uncalled for. And I'd say, perhaps the verbal pummeling (I'm mad for using pummeling twice but I'm not going to crow about it) earlier about that OTHER Peruvian girl was, probably, also uncall-ed for.
A list of things to understand about me (hashed):
- Years, I'm talking at least 20, of self-loathing have created my impenetrable insecurity. Baby, baby, it's not you; it's really me, and it will probably always be. Let me do you this justice: if you can count on any one thing from me it would be this--there is not one possible mean/hateful thing you can say or think about me that I have not already said, or thought about myself. (IWIN!IWIN!IWIN!)
I guess that's the only hash for now.
SO. I'm apologizing...I think? I think that's what I'm trying to do. Or maybe I'm just hee-hawing so you'll cut me a little slack, give me a little lee-way, a little lay away (yeah, purchase me in parts!).
I don't mean to be suicidal sometimes, but let me just say, trying to draw even the slightest drop of blood with the sharp edge of a Garnier Fructise Deep-Conditioning sample tube is really impossible. I mean, it may just be that I don't have enough gusto to use plastic scrap to get through to the goods, but truthfully, I'm not shoveling around when I say that I'd be hard-pressed to find someone who could. I ended up with but a scratch here and there so don't get all gaggled on me because it was just for FULL EFFECT. Not for realZ. I saw the scissors on the counter later when I was shoveling bit fulls of pralines to get rid of the cigarette nose, and I only contemplated them for a second. About as long as I contemplated robbing a bank earlier today.
Incidentally, it's just not a good idea because the bullet will just end up bouncing back at you. Probably in the heart. Or the spleen. And then where will that leave you? Dead. (Think this: is it a better idea to try to kill yourself with the bounced back bullet or with the sharp edge of the Garnier Fructise Deep-Conditioning sample tube?)
My PMS makes me so dreeeeeary. I'd be in the commericial like, "My PMS makes me so dreeeeeary!"
I'm so sorry for everything, Les Matter.
Yeah, I got the bug from Jessica. So what?
Anyway, I've read enough of this journal tonight to realize that:
How pathetic is that?
I'm 22 years old, my house is half-painted and I'd go smoke a cigarette in my sweater and underwear if I didn't have two roommates.
Who can say, Les Matter.
When I drove with my sunglasses to shield the reflection of my tears, hiccuping along to the words of Sondre Lerche, I looked down at my clenched hand, my clenched left hand holding on with might to the scarred gray of my steering wheel. Through my mulberry tinted glasses I still saw clearly the circle sending rays of shine from it's worn silver, and I was sick to see it. I was disgusted by it, the shackle. It went through the window swift and quiet, suspending as I took a turn just in time to catch the light and blind myself once more before I had a chance to leave it behind forever.
I didn't make it to the other side before I felt the weight of his too large finger on my neck. It became his whole hand, his whole body, his every pound of blood and organ and bone and tissue hanging from the too large loop at my neck. He had suspended himself from my neck with a frail chain that never could've held his weight. But I didn't admit it before because no one had before even thought to make me theirs, to take ownership of all the unright things I am. So I accepted the weight, but at that moment, my tears wetting his weight to something unburdenable I found the strength to tear it from me. It hurt, the little piece of the silver clasp that dug into the back of neck as I pulled against him and his weight and his terrible love. It really hurt when it broke the tiniest bit of my skin before I could yank myself free.
That girl's no good. You see, you're making heart cupcakes with the ground-up beatings of your viscera, and she's licking off the icing and feeding the best parts to the dog. She's pretending your carefully poured heart cakes make her happy and full, but, dearest, she's just not satisfied. I know it because I've lived it.
Don't let it sneak up on you, Doll. Because it's only a matter of time before you've left none of your poor pulsing organ to keep yourself alive.
Your friend Les.
These days, you've been sunshine and rock candies. Last night I was worried because of the time, and I only entertained those wretched thoughts of you and he (well, you know what I mean by "he") for a split moment because then I remembered the sugar on your lips and the tang from your skin, and I was awash in sleep and forgetting.
It's your fault I think, and it's your fault I get over, so let's call it even and jump around on the bed.
All my love.
P.S. Thank you for taking me bathing suit shopping without once wincing or crying wolf. You always make me feel pretty as the day I was born.
My very dear Sir:
I have a secret.
Friend among friends:
I am happy for you.
Perennially insane but always your friend,
This is an excerpt from an e-mail I wrote my sister Barbie. She keeps sending me all sorts of internship things, and I thought it was high time I did some 'splaining.
I'm putting it in here because I feel like I need to read it everyday to remind myself about what I'm trying to do these days.
"In spite of the fact that I am living with my parents, I still have a lot of financial responsibility, a lot of it to my parents. I am paying them $600 in monthly rent to live there. Part of it goes to rent and part of it goes to the nearly $5000 in debt I owe them from bailing me out last year. I also have to get back up to date on my bills with the bank: credit cards, my car. I'm close. I'll be there in another few weeks, but I really, really, really want to do things right this time.
I see my moving back in with them as a last ditch effort, as my last chance to get a clue about reality and life and what it means to be responsible, and even with that in the back of my head all the time I'm still having a terrible time doing it. I'd love to be able to go to Washington for three months and write and experience, but I don't have that luxury right now. I mean I know I could get in if I applied, but the stipend is only 250 dollars a week. I can't expect to be able to continue to pay for my life with that kind of money. I have a responsibility to Dan as well; I can't expect him to pay for my car, my cell phone, my credit cards, and the half of my rent, with his salary.
I've had to make a lot of sacrifices this year to be able to achieve the goals I have set for myself. I can't go to my closest friends' wedding because it's a cruise wedding, and we can't afford it. I rarely go out with my friends because if I do and don't spend money they always buy things for me, and I don't like that, or I'll spend money to avoid them feeling obligated to buy me drinks, and then I feel bad for backtracking on all I'm working for.
I am not complaining, I actually see all the sacrifices as good things. It makes me feel motivated when I see something I want but I can't have. It makes me remember what I'm working towards, and my urgency is renewed.
I've promised myself that this year I am going to remain focused on three things.
That means that I'm going to keep a steady job for a year. I'm going to go to work everyday if possible. I'm not going to get lazy and call in sick when I'm really just tired because I stayed up too late hanging out. I'm going to be reliable and hard working and I'm going to make the people at work believe in me so that later on when I need their help, I will have it.
It also means that I'm going to go to school every Thursday at 6:30 p.m. and stay for the entire class, even after the fifteen minute break at 7:30. And it's not so hard this semester because I have a gracious boss who lets me off in time every Thursday to go and because I love my writing class, so that's helpful. But I'm also taking online courses, and I've promised myself to keep up my GPA, which is a 4.0 (and I haven't taken any math classes yet so it'll be hard to do when I take those).
The biggest thing I've been working on is responsibility, this encompasses everything from locking the door when I come into the house, to paying my parking ticket, to saving 10,000 to buy a house in a year or two. This has also been the hardest thing for me to work on because I am naturally unfocused and impatient. I don't like to do things when I don't feel like doing them and forcing myself to do the things I HAVE TO DO has been one of the hardest but most gratifying experiences I've had in a long time.
The bottom line is that I am, in essence, cramming three years of growing up into one. I'm 21 today, I'll be 22 on November 11th. By that time I want to feel like I'm 22. I want to feel like I have learned something valuable, like I have really made a positive, permanent impact on myself. I want to look at myself in the mirror at 22 and feel like I did something important in that year between 21 and 22. And I'm scared that it will be like last year, when I was at the lowest low I've ever been at personally (though not mentally), when I looked at myself and I thought, you haven't done a single positive thing since you were 19. You have hurt your family, and you've mooched off your parents; you have disappointed those who love you, and if you don't change soon, they're not going to care anymore. So for New Year, I didn't say I want to be skinny or make a ton of money. I just want to grow up and be happy and make my family proud.
So this year, I'm not doing internships. I'm just working and going to school and paying off bills and having as much fun as possible while being frugal, frugal, frugal.
But next year, when I'm 22, and I'm looking at myself in the mirror and I'm very happy to know me, I will go on many adventures and experiences. That will be goal then. But for right now, I think my goal is very important and I won't give up on it."
For reference use only, Les Matter.
I can't read anymore of that girl's moonshine words, her absinthian writing. It's making me sick in the brains, like I've got to puke through my spinal column, make it come out of the tailbone that is surreptitious under a soft, warm, but ultimately too-thin flap of skin.
Darlin' babies, it's the jealousy gone reared it's ugly head, makin' me have a fright of a pain in this too small brain of mine. Oh lordy, no one knows my sorrow.
Cradle me, Les Matter.
P.S. I hope I made up absinthian. Flatter my bone-shy thoughts.
P.P.S. Because I least I have that on her.