Listing Out the Sore Spots

Today I awoke alone with the same old story running through my head.

I felt sore and sad and stressed out. I realized that I was overdue for a good writing session, but I didn’t want to write my same old story-not here anyways.

I figure, after all, that if I’m sick of telling it then I’d better stop telling it.

But I can’t stop telling it entirely, because it’s my truth. I can change my truth, but not overnight. Not all at once. Even all of that woe-is-me shit that I need so badly to let go of – it’s still a part of me. And it’s a part of me that signals the need for change.

So, finding a new way to tell the story (dear diary) and then maybe, just maybe, smile about it later, once I’ve let it go, is not a bad thing.

Maybe I can actually play with all this soul-stuff. Maybe I can be deep and true and even a bit dramatic and selfish and bitter and then laugh at it all later.

Maybe part of making art is letting go of these weights to laugh (later). Maybe the art of letting go is being able to laugh at yourself.

(The Martha Wainwright-the song/album above has been my main soundtrack of late and this song in particular evokes a sense of this ‘I’m bitter and I have reason to be, but I can laugh about it too’ kind of feeling-a certain playfulness).

Whatever the thing, I was feeling so-well, in it that I figured I had to do something that involved facing it, rather than running away.

So I decided to write a list of all the sore spots, of every single fucking thing that was bothering me right then (now).

I wrote it out so that I could look at it later and see what parts of the story has changed. And maybe some of it will seem absurd, then. Maybe some will be so different. Maybe some things not so much…but things will be different.

I can itemize it to work on each one and cross them off as needed. Tackle them one at a time.

One stretch at a time.

There is no way to write a new narrative without acknowledging these lingering aches and pains…even the ones that are just in our head.

Some of the things:

1. I needed to go camping this weekend but then didn’t/couldn’t.

2. I’m still in love with you but you aren’t with me.

3. You are with me all the time but I’m afraid that you won’t open up.

4. My phone bill is killing me and I’ve borrowed all the money that I can.

5. There is a hole in the wall of my bathroom door that I’m going to have to tell the landlord about when I leave.

6. I’m scared of selling my bike.

7. My bed hurts to sleep in.

The thing I’m sick of saying/hearing is that I need to just go.

But in this, I realized how easy it is to flip my perspective. I thought, for the first time ever: what if something or someone else out there needs me? What if it’s not about me going, but about me entering another place where I’m valued in a whole different way, for all new adventures?

Maybe this will happen in ways that I can’t even imagine right now.

And then after all of this was out of my system (and some coffee was in my system) I chose to see myself in a different light. I put on some nice clothes, I put my hair up. I placed some pretty earrings on my ears and some make up on my face.

I went over to the window.

I took a series of selfies in my living room, feeling a bit silly but spinning around and around to experiment with angles and lighting. It was amazing how different each shot looked, how the light came through my camera and hit my face and showed this space uniquely with each shift, with each click of the button.

As I spun around I started smiling in spite of myself.

I realized that maybe it is not so silly to feel like I matter, that documenting this moment in this space in this light is important to me and there is nothing wrong with showing it-with showing myself-in a new light.