new york city, month 4.5 : "this is for the memoir"
the thing about new york is when you first move here you cry, a lot. it lasts for the first 6 months to a year, so i'm right in the thick of it. friends have almost interrupted me with their own new york crying stories when i tell them about my current crying schedule:
"omg the first few months i moved here, i cried almost every day......it's less, now."
i started this thing where i tell myself, "this is for the memoir..."-those heartbreaking moments when you wander down the street, on the verge of tears, thinking about the gravity of your life. trying to get over that guy--the really great listener and kisser--who lives in a different country and you can't help but wonder what would've happened if he lived here. wondering why it seems like you don't even belong in the place you always felt at home, and if you don't fit here, then is there any place for you on earth? processing the car wreck you were in a few weeks ago, and wondering why you were weirdly calm when it happened, but now the trauma pops up, randomly. how you haven't figured out what you believe spiritually, but picturing God as mother instead of father helps, and you haven't been inside a church in months, but you're still v ok with it. finding a part-time job that works with the one you already have, but still worrying if it'll be enough to make ends meet. and sometimes random, overwhelmingly beautiful moments happen, like applying for dream jobs in education that weren't possible until now, and meeting a favorite author/hero and hugging each other's necks while she implores you to keep writing.
lots of extremes...lots and lots of things coming to a head. sometimes it seems really unfair to be forced to deal with all these things at once, but that's when the grace of capacity comes in. capacity is one of those words that's been bubbling up to the surface for me, a lot. at the moment, much of my time is my own, and that creates capacity for my brain and my emotions to do their thing, without interruption or judgement. difficult things receive the weight and time they deserve, and my mind gets to wander to things it couldn't before now.
here are a few moments that have come through because of capacity....the rest i'm sharing because they're fun:
- listening to "fade into you" by mazzy star, while doing the dishes, and feeling helplessly sad, but also really lovely
- crying in the bathroom at work, but realizing it's one of the only times your brain will actually let you get all your emotions out, so you're actually glad about it
- having a clearer statement when people ask, "so what do you do?" and answering with things you're passionate about (because sometimes just having the ability to articulate something is a success)
- thinking "omg. do i even WANT to get married and have kids??" and then sobbing on the train about it....?
- quickly realizing you're crying because you had a "plan for life", and even though you get to create a new plan, the not knowing scares you
- having a dear friend from berlin visit and a dear friend from portland visit (in the same weekend!) and having one long, brunchy/boozy weekend with them both
- walking past a gorgeous interracial couple in brooklyn heights
- becoming inspired to take spanish again because your roommate is basically fluent in french and you remember how much you also want to become fluent in another language
- wearing a party dress with llama slippers when your next door neighbor throws a party
- meeting a guy for a date and when he shows up an HOUR LATE, pretending to go to the bathroom but actually leaving, because my time is valuable/that's what beyoncé would do
- considering a braille tattoo, but is it just because you want another tattoo? and is the reason you want a braille tattoo pretentious?
- when you apply for a job you really want and get it, and "god's plan" literally starts playing on someone's phone
in college, (and the years following...and also now) whenever my parents would give me a little extra money to help me out, i would tell them, "listen. someday i'm going to be very rich and buy you a beach house, so no worries!" this is totally a joke, but i'm trying to apply the same idea to my present tears and emotional upheaval.
i tell myself:
"listen. one day soon you won't be broke all the time. you'll cry a lot less, and life will be better. you get to choose, and you will find your place, so no worries!" until then, i'm storing up lots of memoir material in the vault.