bRinG iT

Some days my brain and my heart go to war.

On days I am feeling alive or funny, I feel it and go with it, releasing good vibes that leave me free, shutting my Macbook in satisfaction, my day waiting to arrive.
Most other times I write not knowing what I am feeling or why, the end result leaving me to pause, surprised that I had not been aware of my own emotional tug of war, or just the opposite, I will be serious and at the end of reading what I just wrote, am surprised to hear my own laugh, almost like it came from somewhere else.

It’s ironic because I had not meant to laugh. When I write to be funny, I almost always end up crying, a wall I build to protect myself comes crashing down, and some of my most painful realizations arrive.

I am not quite sure how to handle today, this moment, a new place in my writing, my heart is pulsing and pounding to the beats of awareness, but my brain wants to protect, defend, shield. It tells me this is necessary, especially after a long week, and a million other excuses.

My brain asks my heart to lie.

My heart tells it to go fuck itself, and so, I wait, watching my own computer cursor blinking back at me in a pause, asking, waiting. The space of the blinking cursor signal back to me, and I hate my fingers are unwilling to lie.

I hate that they just don’t shut down the computer, so at least if I don’t lie, I am at least saying nothing, which is better than lying, a fact I used to be able to live with. The details of this week are endless, a wall I hit and hit and hit, a punch and a fall, to get up, feel the punch twice as hard, to get up, the feeling of traveling to a well with pounds of weight on your back to get there and discover the water was poison, to travel again to find the water had been dried, to lay back down, and wrestle my way up again, my thirst greater than my own exhaustion.

There have not been moments of exhilaration of finishing a race, no grand gestures of anything other than hard core problem solving, a step and a step into facing the only thing I have in front of me, all else falling to the side.
My car stalled in the parking lot of work, but I had another to borrow, a fact I was quite proud to have arranged, my tunnel vision to get to school overriding my heart pains of watching Divorcee shop for the girl’s clothes, something I always got to do.

When the car I borrowed began to smell like something was burning and I ended up on the side of the road, calling to tell this generous loved one who I respect and love that the car was on the other side of the country, broken, I realized something cracked, an oozing wound of pain for the burden he had just received in helping me, and I felt like I had traveled right back in time, like nothing I had accomplished even mattered.

The self defeating pain of worthlessness, of being a curse that no one should come near, the negative self talk that I had no right to put my family and community of loved ones out, that I was selfish, a bad person and mother, a failure. These things poured through me like poison, and yet, I gave him the information on the whereabouts of the car, sat on the side of the road with my borrowed camera equipment, three bags worth, and sent a girl in my class a text, to come pick me up.
I had not worked out anything at all other than the step in front of me.
I had to get to class.

Divorcee couldn’t go to work so I could take his car, my new other half, a girl I loved at first sight with my own first name, another blog for a different day, spent the night with me to get me there today, and I have no idea how I will have the next day the money, time, or if I even deserve it.
I do know this.
I know enough that it is a lie. I am lying to say I don’t deserve to be free, that my support system is here because of love, my belief I am a burden is my own rock I crash upon, creating at the very moment I may succeed, my own worst fears.
It is the way of the shadow, and so it follows, rearing its ugly head when I am on the edge of greatness, a freedom that will come with this fearless dedication to my art and my girls.
I once wrote to never underestimate the dark. It will sabotage, break you wide open, suffocate, freeze you, tear you down, all the best intentions lost in its power.
I also once wrote that nothing is greater than the light, with weak trembling knees and chin, I feel all that my shadow has came to show me, to remind me of what is deeply hidden in my core, arriving when I am the most terrified, asking just like my cursor, what do you have to say?

Well, shadow, you are correct. I have put people out of their way, have broken down cars, not one but two, have borrowed equipment and deadlines, have little girls who I miss so deeply my lungs close. I want to thank you for reminding me of all the lies, the way I see life through a lens I do not wish to own, and so, I pray. I pray to the light, let tears fall to remind me where I have come, who I am in my core, that I am worthy, and that now, all you have done is pissed me off. I feel anger and even rage over the sabotage of the last few weeks, my shadow crafty and waiting for the moments I am most weak, the moment I am on the side of the road, an orphan with its tail between its legs.
I decided for our self portrait assignment coming up, I want to dress in clothes symbolizing power, beauty, fame, awareness, and success. I want to be on a broken car, the straps of cables and keys tied around my wrists tied to the car as I rear it like an animal, in my head I imagine training the horse I tell how to ride and when, not the other way around. The car is the symbol of myself, a powerful symbol in my life, my father, broken and old in its way of driving, and I want to show my outrage that it has any place in my future. I will rise above, look into my rear view mirror, have pictures of all that I have overcome, and my GPS will have Lola and Kat, pieces of my self to remind me why I must take this path. I want to go home.
I cry for wanting this so, my art the only way I know how to live my truth, and even today, it asks for my silence.
I say again, like I have every day, waking to a new start on a day I don’t know what fears or tasks or walls I will find. I just know I can’t ignore the wall, beat my self against it, or even climb it. I have to close my eyes and believe the wall doesn’t even exist. The wall is an illusion my fingers and brain tells me is there, but my heart and my soul knows there is another way, that I am almost there, to hang on and trust, to accept the beauty of gifts, of family, of truth.
I remember my favorite part of The Hurricane when he says, “Fear got me here, but Love is Going to Bust Me Out.”
Bring it.
Dust that dirt off your shoulder, cause I am pissed, worthy, alive, and fearless.
Until, my tripod doesn’t hold the weight of my camera, but that is for a different blog, a funny one, when my brain stops telling my heart to lie.
Thank you for all the support, love, gestures, and friendship.
Your offerings are nothing short of Perfect, and I tuck them in my heart, and when you are not looking, I pull them up like a catalog, flipping through them, every kind thought sent, hug, ride, text, helpful hint or name of a guy who knows a guy who knows a guy with a this or that do not go unnoticed. It is humbling inspiration, the light shining on my lies, so bright, I am left hoping to be better, to love greater, to give more freely. You are the wings that lift me up off the side of the road. You are the people I aspire to be.

2 thoughts on “bRinG iT

  1. i felt this same way when i entered my post-graduate teaching program. i kept talking myself down, thinking “what are you doing here? why do you think this is something you can do?” i didn’t know the answer. all i knew is that i had to keep going. and i did. and now i’m a teacher. people like us become our own wall because we think we don’t deserve to succeed, to have what we want. we do deserve it and, katie, you will succeed.

  2. i know you only from your words, if that is ‘only’. your words resonate in me & not. i’ve thought about this ‘recieving’ stuff & why it makes us feel ‘less’. growing up there was always ‘something’ attached to something recieved, blame, guilt, some kind of price – it was seldom free.

    Now that I have my own ‘pieces of myself’ and give to them without even considering it a cost, i’ve come to realize: they messed me up, there is nothing more amazing than ‘complicity’ and nothing more fantastic than ‘joining forces’.

    and in our recieving we give …

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