Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Still In Bed: The Hangover

"did you miss me while you were looking for yourself out there?"--Train

The other night, I ran into an old flame during a rare and impromptu stop at the club. It was like Ashleigh "Hash Brown" Marie Redux, and I was the me from some time ago that I often miss but wonder if I should ever capture again. I contemplated no concerns outside of the room that I was in and was totally in the moment-- I remember every song that played, every touch I felt. There was dancing, kissing, iphone pictures of my pale orange lipstick on his neck, laughter, and some other naughty bits I'll leave out. I had a ball. I woke up the next morning feeling an itch in an unexplored, unknown place I couldn't scratch if I turned my entire body inside out. Story of my life. I'd already been feeling a pull to this place lately, but I can safely say that my actions that night really zoomed in on the hole I've been trying to safety pin away for some time.

Old folks and Bible-thumpers will tell you when something is "off" in your world, it's a Spirit. There are some doubters and naysayers, of course, who think that's hogwash. One might argue that with the loss of my beloved grandfather, a few run-ins with some major exes, a ton of travel, and a career shift, a mild loss of equilibrium is natural. But being an old soul and having done my personal fair share of Bible-thumping, I'm inclined to agree with the senior citizens. This said, I'll let you know there's currently a mixed-cocktail of a spirit wafting around my bedroom. I think that my cleaning frenzy yesterday, in which I shockingly decided to organize and put away the three piles of clothes and pillows that have been posted up around my room since June, gave the spirit nowhere left to hide. Ingredients include: mental and emotional fatigue, wistfulness, confusion, and a dash of regret--which is normally indigestable and staunchly not a part of my vocabulary. But I taste it ever-so-slightly in this concoction. And I think I have a bit of a hangover.

These late 20's are interesting, because you wake up daily with a heavy sense of purpose. It's just that you don't always know what that purpose is. It can seem like one thing when you put your head on the pillow at night and another thing entirely when you lift it in the morning. I'm personally in that phase where you wish you really had nine lives, nine opportunities to live completely different existences. Where you feel like choosing just one thing might take away the possibility of something else, or that you might run out of time before something important you needed to do gets done. That phase where you're doing everything under the sun, but nothing well. Or maybe it's not a phase, maybe it's just me--I haven't ruled out that possibility. I can't even choose a nail color for Pete's sakes (so I wear three) and that only lasts a week.

Anyhow, it's one of those days I feel not just like a writer who delivers tongue-in-cheek crazy, but someone that's truly crazy. It's one of those weeks I can't decide how I like my hair, my eggs, or my love life. One of those months I'm itching to do twenty different things and not doing any one of them solidly. It's one of those days I've sent five emails, searched twelve sites, sent four tweets but haven't answered one call or gotten out of bed, because I haven't figured out why I should. These days don't come often, but when they do, they make you feel like your life is in a tailspin.

The past couple of months have been ridiculously full--I've loved, I've lost, I've been confronted with that I've loved and lost--or loved and left. And so today, I'm in bed listening to Nancy Wilson and John Coltrane and plotting my next step, just me and Lola (my pink Dell). In the midst of this, I'm mentally running through the overdose of information, pontifications, and personal thoughts I've been bombarded with lately. Among them, my best friend's father's wisdom from last week, when he offered at dinner that our generation is like an old O'Jay's tune from the '70s that sang something about "where are you going", that our generation has no purpose and no idea how to discern purpose. The basic principle of life, he said, is that you discover your purpose and how it's going to serve others, find a partner to ride with you, and God will supply absolutely everything you need to do what you need to do. He said that our generation misses out on the partner and the purpose. We treat life like it's supposed to cater to us and our egos, and since we don't treasure the gifts of life, we miss the importance of picking the partner congruent with our life's work.

Of course, this got me thinking. I think a lot of women instinctively know and embrace this need for a partner, but our cultural climate has led us, over time, to act outside of character-- which fuels men doing the same thing. When Mr. Evans--whom I've known for 25 years and I know wants the best for me and wouldn't give me wooden advice--tells me something, I listen. So his conversation left me wondering what I've missed trying to feed my ego needs. I'm not a snob, but I am picky. Chemistry is very delicate, in all areas of life. And passion is penultimate in my life. If I'm not absolutely crazy about it, I won't care. Be it a career, a man, a friend, a song...it has to strike the absolute perfect chord inside of me, or I can't commit to it. This leaves me with few options. But the right thing feels so amazing, that I can't bear the off-key notes of the wrong things.

And this takes me back to the club (how many times in life will you hear that transition?). The kissing, the laughing, the acting out, the good times...they're great. And life should be made up of moments like that, in places like that, with people like that. But those moments can and should never define your life. I know they won't define mine. And so I'm left looking for the center of life, the core, the meat and who will eat it with me. Where I'm going.

Life is too intricate a science to be able to get it all right off the bat; it's trial and error for sure. But how many errors can you make before they're no longer trials but a way of being? This question is looming in my mind with the other million tooling around in my brain about tomorrow. And yet the fact remains. This day, I'm a semi-grown woman that's still in her bed at 4PM, typing away to ears she's not sure hear, including her own.

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