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Do not google your emotions.

 Have you ever felt compelled to google mystery symptoms in the middle of the night? I have.  I know I am not alone.  What is this rash? Is this bug a bed bug?  Does this fever mean I am dying or just slightly ill? These questions loom large in the dark.  We are urged not to do this, that instead, we should ask a health professional (or accost one at a social event). "Nice to meet you, how are you with moles? Have I got one for you!" This is how I have been feeling about emotions lately.  Due to global reasons I do not need to mention, I have spent a lot of time apart from others. I still talk to my friends and family every day, but it is rare right now that we are actually in the same room doing stuff together.  I cling to those fleeting moments of closeness like no one's business and get nourished by them long after we have to go back to our respective cubby holes, but the constraints on those times are real. As a result, I am starting to realize that even emotions are

Surface tension

  My vocabulary was the first to go.  Simple words would escape me and I would end up searching around for them like I do for my glasses in the dark. I would come back with inadequate replacements.  I blamed zoom, I blamed stress.  What I never really considered was that maybe I was searching for words when there were none.   Next came the conversation.  It dried up.  I used to love winding endless discussions like a river with many tributaries, some mountain fed, some coming from deep within the forest.  On really exciting days, the rain fell and made the river overflow. However, the river bed's water evaporated. I think about conversations now fondly like I do of childhood pastimes.  I cannot seem to reach for anything more substantial than what I am eating. or seeing on the internet or of course the weather.  I am boring myself. These past several months have felt a bit like musical chairs. The music stopped and I was without a chair.   I knew there was something really differen

The words coming out of my mouth

  These days I wear a mask. I don't wear a mask all of the time, only when I am indoors or unavoidably up close with people who I don't usually interact with.  I wear one when I am ordering things, or buying things or attempting to enjoy some form of public entertainment.  I cannot rely on reading others lips. My lips are hidden. We ask each other to repeat.  We move our eyes or our whole heads to try and enunciate more clearly.  I say fewer words, more carefully chosen words behind the mask. Sometimes that is helpful, sometimes that just causes more confusion. I walked into the woods. I did not need a mask.  I only saw a few other people and they were distanced. Masks were unnecessary. After so much talking and not talking and avoiding talking out loud I am forced to examine when I speak and when I choose not to. This is not a bad thing since I can be an insufferable chatter box, just a new thing for my brain to adjust itself to. When I am not standing around in a mask, I am c

Different Stages of your ability.

“Your whole life you are really writing one book, which is an attempt to grasp the consciousness of your time and place– a single book written from different stages of your ability.” --Nadine Gordimer

Out on the line.

 I have been so lucky in so many ways. I have only experienced tiny specks of physical and emotional pain in my life. Luckily that pain has been either episodic or limited and I have been able to manage it with drugs, or crying or writing or wine or chips....or something. This summer, a decade of holding my head the wrong way, typing, scrolling, stressing and driving all ganged up on my neck and said...we are holding you hostage until you address this.  However, when it first started, the pain didn't explain it just attacked. And attacked. No position relieved it. No drug touched it. It went on and on. I could not sleep. I could not hold a book or type. I drove with difficulty. Swimming in the ocean gave me enough pleasure that I temporarily forgot it.  I couldn't drink to forget it though or massage it enough. It just kept going.   I tackled the pain like I tackle everything, blindly and in a chaotically forceful way. This pain refused to be massaged away. It turns out this pa

Daymare

As I slept, I dreamt that I found shelter inside a house.  I was "escaping" impending lightening. However, the lightening found me. It struck the house and I stood inside the house and watched the roof be lifted right off.  I stood there, not afraid, thinking, wow, I have never seen a house's roof come off while I stood inside it (or outside it for that matter). I was strangely not terrified.  I was observing this fairly exciting event as a passive onlooker even though I stood in middle of that wrecked house. Mentally I knew that a roof being ripped off a house by bad weather is not good, but I did not feel stressed. When I woke up, I was gripped by fear.  The residue of that dream and others that had already faded remained and kept me pinned to the sheets. My subconscious is working overtime. It is patiently painting a picture for me in my dreams and gripping my heart when I am awake forcing me to remember seeing the sky through a roofless house.