Good morning, page. I've missed you. I thought about you all night and shot straight out of bed without hitting snooze to get to you.
Today is my mom's 74th birthday. I guess that's pretty old. I haven't seen her since Christmas and I miss her. It takes a lot to miss her but I do. I miss her smell. It's the original scent of skin - so familiar, distinct, irreplaceable, comforting. She calls me pumpkin and pats me on the back when I hug her goodbye.
I'm in a missing mood. I miss my boyfriend. Four days can feel like forever. I need lots of skin-on-skin time. There's just no substitute.
I need to reconnect with my friends. It's easy to feel lonely when you see your friends making art and hanging out without you. Most of my best lady friends have moved far away. Oregon, Chicago, NYC, Portland. I'm proud of them for making the move. They're all up to big things.
The dog is eating away at his own skin. It's like he can't get enough of teeth-on-skin time with himself. He's a pack animal; maybe he misses biting the skin of his mother and brothers. I bit him on the neck last night and he launched into a whole other level of play that I had never seen. Maybe I should think more like a dog when we play.
It's already 3-blanket time around here. If it's under sixty degrees, it may as well be the dead of winter for me. I need a heavy blanket to shoosh me off to sleep. If it can't be skin-on-skin then I guess three blankets and four pillows will do. One pillow rests under my head, one under my arm, and the other two form a barrier between me and the deadly wall. I can roll over and feel the pillow there and snuggle it. Otherwise, I'd roll off into the endless, cold, dark abyss that is the other side of the bed. I'm in a missing mood.
I had a dream that my old work friend was accused of murder. Some fucked up torture scenario that I can't recall. Her face was flashing all over CNN -- all the worst shots. Half-blinking, tired, sadistic-looking shots. And videos of her saying questionable things out-of-context that anybody would say if they thought they were in private. No one is perfect and it's so easy to find dirt on people if all you want to find is dirt. I cried and cried because I knew that even if she did murder someone, she was a good person. But her life would never be the same, guilty or innocent.
No matter how completely you clean up after your mistakes -- acknowledge your actions, take responsibility, apologize, seek out those you hurt -- you can never get back to where you were. All you have is now and now and now and now. The catch-22 is, you can't stop making mistakes. And even calling them mistakes is misleading. There are actions, consequences, and reactions. What one calls a mistake, another might call a blessing. I've made plenty of these so-called mistakes in the past two years but they have all led me here. My life is more perfect, more complete, more me than I ever could have imagined.
I just found myself doing something I did for countless hours as a kid-- staring at my skin. I would sit under a sunny window and let the sunshine make sparkles every color of the rainbow. It shimmers like diamonds - purple, green, yellow, red. It's a lifeless desert. It's a map with blue rivers running through it. There's a pulsing force beneath trying to escape. I got lost in these questions. How does the body know where fingers should stop and fingernails should start? How do we get our fingerprints? Why don't dogs have fingerprints? These are my fingerprints and no one else's. There are so many people in the world and no one has these fingerprints. For a child, this is mind-blowing shit. For an adult, it's all science. DNA, genetics, the circulatory system, blah blah blah. We can't un-know what we know about our bodies but it's incredibly satisfying to indulge in that again. To get lost in the tiny hairs, and now scars, and tap into that wonder, to feel small, to grapple with the paradox of being totally unique but ultimately a blip on the radar of humanity.
When my dad was in hospice -- at the very end when he had lost consciousness -- there was nothing to do but sit quietly and stare at his hands. I'd always loved his hands. Leathery, covered in a million scars, swollen knuckles, wooden fingernails, dry, dry, dry. There was no window or sunlight to make sparkles on his skin. I don't think there were any sparkles left at that point. He was gone in a matter of minutes. But I still have his hands burned into my memory. And besides the scars, my hands look just like his. He is always with me.
I had a dream that I called my sister. We haven't talked in many years. I
assume she knows some things from context clues on Facebook, but she doesn't really
know about my business, my divorce, my life as it is now at all. And I
don't know her kids anymore. Her daughters are 15 and 13. Her son, who
was a shy little toddler last I saw him, is up in the double digits
himself. In the dream, it was effortless. I don't even remember who
called who, but I picked up the phone and, as if by magic, she was there. We picked up
right where we left off.
I miss everyone.