I haven't had the urge to write recently and that's probably because I'm exhausted. And also probably because there is some throbbing beige undercurrent in my life, like things are happening and they are big but big in the way where instead of celebrating on a dance floor I build Ikea furniture and do more yoga.
I signed a book agent and a firm to represent me. I'm about to secure venture funding to grow a vision I've had squarely planted in the middle of my heart since I googled "things sober people do for fun" and found only Bucky Sinister's non-ironic advice to get a VCR and use it. I moved back to the city I love and I no longer feel like an alien pretending that Los Angeles is great but rather who l actually am which is a woman who fucking hates Los Angeles. I finally have an apartment with a washer and dryer and a bedroom door and a car replete with a parking spot, and my life isn't walking up-hill (to the Trader Joes) both ways. I have a growing team and I wake up every day doing exactly what it is I want to be doing.
And yet I have the energy of a wise old grey-faced dog; I am not agog; I am agogless.
Maybe this is what being an adult looks like, like an actual adult and not the kind we pretend we are when we have 401ks and houses and guest towels. Or maybe it's that other thing, that part of me that is so lonely and starved for male energy and affection and a relationship that I find myself not masturbating in bed or my car on my commute like a normal person but rather making out with my arm in the shower.
I talk about this a lot lately, about how hard this one part is for me. And I feel like I'm running out of time to talk about it, like I've used up all my Where is he?-credits. But also: I don't care because this is what's happening.
The last relationship ended in February 2011, he came home from his morning row and explained to me that he didn't feel as in love with me as he'd hoped he would but he'd like to pursue us anyway, as if us was a business transaction he was mildly bullish on. I told him to fuck off, skipped work, uncorked a bottle of wine at 10am, and called an ex-boyfriend to come get me and make it go away, the way I always called up someone from the bench.
And that was it. The last of it. I would pass further into addiction that year and the next and climb my way out of it two years later, and I would do that alone, and then I would spend the next 4+ years gutting and rebuilding my life, and I would do that alone, too.
Alone for a number of years that rounds up to a decade. Alone for my thirties, not just in my thirties.
It is this thing, my thing, and it isn't so much a part of my life or this thing that I've experienced, but at this point, it's almost its own entity. There is me, and there is my aloneness, and we both have a story. It has the shape of Rome and the smell of new car and it sounds like Nils Frahm. It is the moment in the shower, arm in mouth, the water pouring over my body and the sobs that follow it, the grief of a loss of something I don't even have to lose, and the moment after it where I tell myself that this okay, this is healthy, you are sick of not making out in showers with things that have two legs and chest hair. It is a thousand conversations on my knees, my head pressed into the floor, asking for this one thing that doesn't feel like it's mine. It is the march through airport after airport of a woman by herself, who figures out new countries and cities and languages and transportation systems and luggage without the other half of her team. It has the power of someone who finds out she is her own prince charming, the space of a bed where a woman can sleep diagonal and turn over approximately 31 times without a care of who she might disturb. It is the forgetting of morning breath and morning sex and what it feels like to be the little spoon. It is the foreignness of what it means to be a person's person, and the startle I feel when I see some other couple's intimacy at close range. It is a diary of love affairs of men with exotic names and corn-fed names and it is the hundreds of stories I have told and the hundreds I still have to. It is too many first dates, too many last ones. It is that one time where he ran into the Museo Criminologico grasping the copy of Self Reliance I kept throwing back at him, or the first time we held hands in the opera, or how we kissed standing over the place where Julius Caesar was murdered, or how for the first few weeks that we knew each other Louis Armstrong came on everywhere I went. It is the last time we saw each other and how many times I walked away, or how many of them found the right ones just after our first date, or how many of them stood me up, or how I handled all of them standing me up. It is so many what-ifs; so many pieces of so many somethings that will never add up to one. It is to be alone, and it is to be alone through the years where I find out who I am, or at least start to.
When I feel silly or ungrateful, and think how could there be an undercurrent of beige when everything you have worked for is neon pink, I remember that we are dynamic things who can hold more than two things true at once. When I feel like I have told one too many a man story, or preface my pain with "I know I can't stop talking about this" or some other phrase that apologizes for what I am going through. When people say things like You can have it all but you can't have it all at once or When you stop looking is when it happens or how God is just keeping that door shut tight or that this is for my protection or so I can focus on building my fucking business or that I just need to go on more dates or be more patient or change my energy because I'm REPELLING MEN or any of the fucked up things that people say to try and make sense of the pain we sometimes cannot make sense of.
When all of this:
I remember that this is the story of me and that entity. The story of that almost decade of my aloneness, and it will never feel like anything that anyone else understands or anything that I yet understand. That it isn't tired or old and I am not bringing the wrong energy to it, or doing anything wrong for that matter. I just am, and it just is, and it's beautiful in the tragic kind of way, and tragic in the "this is how you know you're alive" kind of way.