Sunday, June 27, 2010

100 Words to End It All



I find myself falling into the metaphysical/metaphorical arms of wise, dead men as I sift through the filings of my mind, happy to say I have eased my troubles through expression and time. My problems of yesterday are yesterday's problems.

There are people in my life who support and understand me. Their words never used in vanity. Their minds never absent. While they are with me, time lost with them shall never be wasted.

"Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art… It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things that give value to survival.” – C.S. Lewis

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Desperate for Wrongness



This part of my life is what I like to call, "Desperate for Wrongness." I was not dressed to stand out, but the black on my nails, so atrociously stereotyped by my uncle on a previous night, was beginning to reflect the bastardly rebellion in my heart. I have had a lot to think about over the course of this summer, and I am sure more is to come for my sun-filled days have yet to find a close. Albert Einstein once defined "insanity" as "doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results." At this moment, I am a victim of self-injury: I have found myself wrenched into an unforgivable and disappointing trap and doing nothing to fight it or avoid it in the future. I continue to place myself in positions that only hurt me, and I hope to God, every time, when I return things will be different. I live with a willingness to grow for the better, while my friends stand on the other side and watch me pass like a slow-moving train, their feet buried in the sand. I want life to take me in an exciting direction and teach me its hardest and best lessons. The aforementioned would rather listen to what I have learned and pretend to understand it all than actually take the journey themselves; they believe if they sit still long enough it will simply fall into their laps.

Along with everything else I have learned, I am learning to let go of what holds me back. As much as it actually pains me to admit it, these friends of whom I considered closest to my heart are no longer the people I want permanently in my life. They look inwardly and use my person as only another number on their friend roster. They live by photographs rather than through them--the more they have, the more they can prove to others they lead an exciting life (though no one is there to sift through the film). And yet, despite all of this negativity, there is a tragic part of me that holds on tight to the friendship we once had. There is a part of me that defends them and will strike a match against my tongue before I speak misjudgingly of them. I have seen and heard enough unfriendly actions to teach me where to draw the line and how to be a better friend. They learn nothing, it seems, from their misfortunes, and rather, use those negative memories as a justification for future horrid actions against others. I may not always walk with my eyes as open as I would hope, but I know when I am wrong and try to make up for it in the end. I am worried a proper resolution may never come; speaking to a passive-aggressive personality is even less-accomplishing than speaking to a brick wall. This knowledge has made one failed attempt leave me with no reason to try again, and apprehensive of any reaction I may receive if I were to try harder.

I had spoken my piece for the afternoon--or the bulk of it rather--and fell to soaking in what Melody had to say. She is used to me giving her an earful, but she is just as capable of coherent speech as I. It was only fitting that, if I were to confide in her and speak my mind, I give her a chance to calm me and advise me on any future actions I may take to find some piece of closure. It seemed, she too had her own reserved feelings towards the situation, and I preserved the stance that while our thoughts share semblance, we are two different people with two different thoughts. If I am to ever follow through with any of my need for a satisfying ending, I would have to leave her completely out of it.

When we were both entering the years of teenager-y, I found myself in a tiff with another girl of whom we considered our "best friend." I was the friend who threw Melody into the conflict, and never realized it at the time. Melody, being the good friend she is, did not feel the need to assert this obvious misuse of her decency, but I know now asking her to pass along messages and pulling her to my side, ended with the girl turning on Melody as well, and us leaving the the girl in the lurch of her own self-pity. While this is all behind the three of us now, I cannot forget moments like it. I have to remind myself from time-to-time that while we may agree, my problems are my own and she needs not to carry my burdens unless she does so on her own accord. From which I would turn her if that was the case.

In the car, in the restaurant, in our quick trip to the store, and even on the ride to my house, we were either speaking of the problem, or I was still thinking hard about it. I am not sure if she was as distraught as I was, but we seemed to come to an understanding. Time away has not done even the slightest of good in this. As Melody put it, "It seems like it's nothing more than a hiatus, because when we get together again, nothing has changed. We pick right back up to being annoyed with each other," as well as what she left out: never moving on to something new over which to bond. They seem stuck on past problems or laughs rather than making new memories and moving on from worn issues. They are, as I have already stated, stuck in the same place as I try to move forward.

I would love to hear from the mouth of the sincerest of babes that all of this is in my head, that they still care and that I am being too dramatic. Maybe, just maybe, I am giving these people, who cannot see past the tips of their own noses to realize the consequences of their own actions, too much credit as being creative enough to produce what feels like a phasing-out. I am desperate to hear that I am wrong. I am used to hearing and believing that I am wrong. But even in my most fierce attempts to hold all of this together, and myself, I know in my heart this time I am not mistaken. As desperate as I may be, I am probably, sitting here, the most right I have ever been.

Monday, June 21, 2010

A Visit From Family



I sat in Waffle House staring at the laminated convenience in my spot at the booth--menu and place-mat in one. She was on the phone with her latest beau (and I use the term loosely), hardly noticing the company before her. The waitress continued to come to our table, making sure she did not miss a chance to serve us and add to her personal tip jar. She, too, went unnoticed by my friend. I spent two-dollars on a glass of orange juice which I patiently used as a buffer to keep me from ripping the phone out of her hand and stealing the battery from it for the duration of the night. I contemplated throwing my drink at her as well, but the juice had enough tangy flavor to keep me preoccupied by my taste buds' needs over my own. I began to miss the annoyance inside my home from which I thought I was escaping.

At 76-years old, my grandmother had not told anyone that she had been sick since April, and it had finally caught up to her. She is currently lying in the hospital in intensive care with double pneumonia. As she re-cooperates, the rest of us have had the delight of entertaining one of her sons, who traveled 700-dollars worth of plane fuel to see her and catch up with us. The time apart has not helped us come together so easily. We lead two different lives: start our days in different ways, eat different things, and express ourselves, well, differently. While it may be quite overbearing and unnerving at times, with Minute Maid as my only friend tonight, I actually found myself missing my uncle's incessant talking, for when he speaks, he wants our full attention and returns it.

With all of my uncle's negative personality traits, I tried to steer clear of him. Today I was cornered in my room for conversation and eye-contact--two things of which I was avoiding successfully until that moment. Any way a person could find to rival my patience and nerves, he had found. It seemed as though the tension I filled the room with during such times did not bolster his confidence. I actually found myself in the awkward position of being the one who has hurt a family member rather than my usual position of just being hurt. "Will you promise me something?" I had heard this question since his arrival last Thursday. "What is it?" I asked apprehensively. "Will you open up to me?" I did not like hearing this. He was so desperate for affection and love, and it was my fault he was not receiving any. "I'll try." It was all I could say.

Until that moment, I pictured myself ranting about my uncle over a cold glass of chocolate milk and syrup-soaked waffles. I did not suspect I would find myself having to give into his quite pathetic attempts to engage me in conversation, and considering myself a horrible person afterward, while my friend sat across the booth refusing to get off the phone with her latest toy. I could not convince myself that I was hungry enough for even a small serving of hash browns. Even the dollar menu seemed overwhelming. I fought the urge to throw the obvious at her when she finally parted the right-side of her face from her phone. The boy is all wrong for her, but she thinks they have a connection, and it is not the first time she has assumed so. But if it does turn out to be a mistake, I have to let her make it. After all, I was having to face the fact that I am human as well, and this past weekend, I made a slew of mistakes that interfered with loving someone who loves me dearly. Her mistake, if any, would just be to love someone, who did not deserve it, too much. I wonder if it is easier to bleed love than it is to build walls. Blood stains clothes but not quite as badly as Georgia red clay, and you need clay to make bricks, right?

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Love and Be Loved

I wanted to write about a wedding. About the ceremonial, nauseating traditions, and about the humorous and obvious differences between Yankees and Southerners in America. However, I could not even force myself to finish the post. I was unmotivated, to say the least.

Recently, I logged in again to MySpace under a new account. I wanted to keep up with my favorite music and To Write Love on Her Arms (TWLOHA). I am glad I made such a decision. Ever since I created a new account, I see new people crying out for attention and love on TWLOHA's MySpace page. It is heartbreaking and beautiful. It is because of this and some of the newest friends I have made through such a discovery, that I feel so inclined to send this to To Write Love On Her Arms, though I doubt they will ever see it:
I love you, TWLOHA. What you do... What you stand for... You guys are absolutely amazing. I hope to intern with you all at least once in my life, to experience the outreach, the fellowship, the love.

I read the stories people leave on your MySpace wall. They say they have given up, but they haven't. If they had truly given up there would be no comments. They wouldn't be around to even surf the web anonymously. Within them lies a bit of hope--they know if they cry out, somewhere, someone will find them and take their hand. And it is because of you, TWLOHA, that they feel that comfort that there is love if they just search hard enough. That, despite everything, there is someone willing to love them and take care of them when they really need it.

I know I won't be able to save everyone, but I want to take a hand in need, if they are willing to accept my offer. Because I have been inspired by the idea that we are here to love and be loved. And that life only gets easier if we look to help others and then help ourselves.

TWLOHA moves mountains just by inspiring others to love a little more.

I feel it only suiting now that I inform those who are unsure of TWLOHA's mission statement, which reads as follows: "To Write Love on Her Arms is a non-profit movement dedicated to presenting hope and finding help for people struggling with depression, addiction, self-injury and suicide. TWLOHA exists to encourage, inform, inspire and also to invest directly into treatment and recovery." Their vision is beautiful and moving and can be found here. Just reading it changed my life, but avidly supporting it is what has changed me forever.

I hope this means something to someone. This may not be the most eloquent post I have ever published, but I believe the movement says enough on its own. I could spend more time tonight, depriving myself of a good night's sleep, stitching together the most delicate of my vocabulary into a masterpiece of its own, but this is not about my writing ability, it is about what TWLOHA is doing and has done for thousands out there, and continues to do daily for others.