Every day at the same time, a truck drives by and makes a clanging sound that I think is the mailbox. I don't know why I get so excited by the arrival of the mail. I think I must be lonely.
I'm not the sort of person who needs to not be lonely.
Kurt is the very same way, although he is also shy. I'm not shy. I just don't maintain a proper connection with people. I'm too pent up, in my thoughts. I'm too much inside of me. I will let you down.
Like in this song, all of this might make you think I don't like people, but that isn't quite right. I love people, some of them. I want people to be happy and safe and cared for. I also don't really feel sad when something happens. When the World Trade Center collapsed, I understood that it was sad, but I didn't know how to really feel that sadness. My little world was still in tact.
That's what I mean when I say I'm lonely.
I've been struggling lately with feeling like I'm failing at everything. I'm pretty sure my problem is bleeding. I need to compartmentalize so that I'm not writing in my head when I should be playing with my kids, so that I'm not curled up under a blanket with Scouty watching tv when I should be making dinner, so that I'm not falling asleep and irritable when I should be paying attention to my beautiful husband.
I do everything, but none of it very well. I need to understand that I can be whatever I want to be, but just not all at the same time.
I need to make a time for walking and writing and opening the mail. I need to let every day from 7am - 5pm be for focusing on only being a mommy. When I try to be something else too, during that time, I just end up hating everything I try. I end up feeling scattered and Louisey complains and I resent the fact that she's complaining and I can't come up with any ideas about being a person.
When I'm mommy-ing, I need to do it with my whole heart.
When I'm writing, I need to be alone and for it to be quiet and cold.
When I'm alone with my husband in the evenings, I need to have saved some part of me.
I need to just do the fucking laundry, bake the bread. I need to not be muttering to myself over breakfast.
I am tired and I am lonely and failing because I have no boundaries. All of the parts of me bleed together and turn into something muddy. When my baby cries in the night, I curse god and say, "I was promised this time for sleeping!"
Nobody ever promised me anything.
Except Kurt, when he said, "I will be the first person in your life to treat you the way you deserve."
And except my girls, when they came blinking and arms splayed wide open under the fluorescent lights and promised with their wide little eyes to be pure and good and real, to love me and love me and love me, no matter how distracted I am while we're coloring.
I told Kurt I was quitting writing, I was quitting trying. I was quitting exercise and gardening and sewing. I was quitting trying knots in my hair. I was quitting.
He told me, "Okay, go ahead, because I know you won't."
When I meant is that I'm quitting trying to get away from something. From days that are the same. From a bleached carcass and dreams that paint murder on the horizon. From a desert of love and sorrow.
When I'm mommy, I'm mommy.
When I'm alone, I'm alone.
When I'm somebody's wife, I am a for real partner. I'm not scribbling down notes during commercials.
There needs to be a time for planning dinner and folding clothes. I need to stare at the shirts as I'm hanging them, to feel them, the grain and pattern of the threads and stop making up stories in my head and pretending like I am someone else.
We're not going to fly to Morocco. I'll write when I'm allowed. I'm lonely, but I don't need anybody. I've forgotten everything except the buzz in my thoughts. I'm doing everything, see? So, I am doing nothing.
I'm not required to take advantage of every opportunity. Sometimes a moment to sit down is just a moment to sit down. When the kids are playing quietly or sleeping, I'm not entitled to a chance to read or write or to be a woman who is separate from them. I'm not entitled to anything except the magnificent ocean of love and blood and sorrow that they'll afford me, if I'm paying enough attention.