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Postscript [03 Oct 2009|07:06pm]
For those who do not know, I have moved to rural Virginia and am living alone at my grandparents bayside home. To chronicle this place/experience (which mostly consists of me biking around and marveling at the eccentric wonders of country livin') I started a blog, listed below.


http://sheshakes.blogspot.com/
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[14 Nov 2007|01:49am]
Now I feel like a crumbling house on wheels. I keep rolling, faster, faster, because if I stop clumps of me will fall away from me, and soon I will be nothing but wheels. Now I feel like child-me with a red pail full of water. I am swinging it in circles around my head as fast as I can because I know now that I am old enough to know things that should I stop the water will spill from the pail all over child-me, probably wetting my hopeful cotton sundress.

Now that they demand I write films all I can write are circuitous fairy tales in which people go away, come back, fall in love, and go away again. I make lists upon lists upon lists of the things they demand I write, and when they demand I write them by, and then never write them. I just hold the lists in my hands and stare at the letters on all the little pieces of paper and wish that they demanded I write lists.

Now it is Summer. I am drunk and I am dancing and I am wearing a sundress and watching time whittle away at itself day after day - day after longer day. I am at the beach and I am swimming with sea lions and a boy who I am actually really just friends with and I am running in the marshland. I am learning the names of all the shaggy haired beautiful boys who make my coffee and mumble at me while steaming milk. I am covered in flour and glitter and holding a garden hose, and someone is spraying me with a shaken forty of King Cobra. I am eating zuccini bread and zuccini with parmesan and zuccini stir fry and zuccini on kabobs. I am swimming in a lake that I am not supposed to swim in and imagining the muddy bottom coated in fish hooks, and I am singing "Part of Your World." I am having awful fun, and I am doing nothing, and I am trying so hard to forget that some things are sliding by us. I am trying to forget that this is the last summer I have in this place with these people. I am trying to forget that some things are almost over. I am trying to live in moments.

Now it is Now. I am scattered like a dandelion, and a pail of water, and a crumbling house on wheels.
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[12 Jun 2007|02:50am]
I am initially inclined to say I have had nothing to say. But I should say I am learning to have nothing to say. I should say I am learning to close the door behind me.

Sometimes I make a mistake. I say, I am an angry person. But honesty is tactless. You look uncomfortable. I say, Oh melodrama, and we laugh at me.
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[31 Mar 2007|03:31pm]
I think I need a drink.
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[28 Mar 2007|03:53pm]
I am home. It feels strange to call it home. I no longer mind being in Fremont, so long as my stay is short and departure imminent. The long-lived bitterness I harbored for this place has mostly dissipated, and I am left with a latent sadness for the childhood and adolescence I lived in this colorless, characterless town. It is most strange to see people who I once knew, who once knew me. I find myself suddenly and unexpectedly apathetic to them, or their opinion of me. It has become very clear that they have no idea who I am or was, and it's liberating in a way. I have changed as I never thought I would, and I am absurdly positive about who I am becoming, perhaps for the first time since childhood. Those places in my hometown that I once looked upon with bitterness, or anger, or regret no longer perturb me; the mistakes I made here have not ruined me. I may be stronger for them. There is little, now, looking back, that I would do differently.

The mimosa trees and sidewalks and street names have lost their edge on me, and I find I can remember without wincing, finally.

My room feels as though it no longer fits me; the clothes hanging in the closet are either too small or too unlike me, and the bed is too small. The blue walls no longer suit me, and when I open the books in the shelves old snapshots of people I no longer know or can't even remember fall in my lap, like forgotten pressed flowers. I've only been gone for three years, but it seems like its been years and years, five, ten. Driving past the high school at lunch, the students look like children and I am shocked by their youth. We thought we were adults, didn't we? It is unimaginable to me, how we could have seen ourselves as anything but children. Not to say I am an adult now; looking at all of the time I have yet to live, twenty seems awfully and almost absurdly young, still. Almost twenty-one.

Sitting here in my too-small bed in my Alaskan Ice Blue room, I can hear the band practicing across the creekbed and the wind in the gray-blue pine that used to touch my window at night, before they cut it back. I still know where every fruit tree is, avocado to banana, and where the nasturtium grow best in the shade upstream. I know what the houses looked like before they were remodeled, bursting anew from the ground like beige-stucco mushrooms after the rain. I remember the games I played in the backyard and picking snails from the leaves of the agapanthus, and listening to the far-off train whistles at night. I am starting to weed out the good from the bad. I wonder who I will never see again - who I will forget entirely. I wonder what I'll remember of this place in ten years, once my parents have left Fremont along with most everyone I ever knew here. I am not so afraid to forget anymore. I am not so anxious to, either. I think I may be on my way to being okay.
3 sunk|swim

[13 Feb 2007|01:14am]
I don't really know what my life has been like since I last found I had anything to say about it. I have been avoiding myself, lately. It is a horrifying thing, the ability to ignore oneself. Ignoring my little wants and hurts and sorrows in favor of efficiency and functionality and stability. Subverting those little heart flutters to the demands of this institution to which I have bound myself and the majors within it to which I have pledged my time and their money. And I have truly come to recognize how capable I am of this neglect of self, this callous dismissal of weakness or vulnerability. I forget for days sometimes the things I have shoved away in drawers and onto the dusty shelves, out of sight and, now, mind. It is easier, I have found, to shelve some things. Even love.

Years ago if you had told me that I would ever deny myself my own feelings because of their inconvenience I would have laughed or cried or screamed. When I first realized I was ready to do it I did all those things at once, for hours, knowing that somewhere along the line I had let myself get rational about the one thing I swore I'd never be rational about. It is an unfortunate thing, to realize you might love someone that you don't want to love, who can't love you. And to realize that you've known and sabotaged yourself, denying yourself the admission of something because of its inconvenience, or its difficulty. Laughing because it's absurd. Crying because it hurts. Screaming because you're mad, mostly at yourself.

And I have been forgetting you for days at a time now.

It has been a bizarre few months. I used to think I knew myself better than anyone should know themselves - that I had robbed myself of the ability to surprise myself with years of unrelenting self-criticism, an adolescence lived predominantly in my head. I never knew I could be so cold, feel so distanced, or behave in a way so out of keeping with my nature. Today it rained on me and I didn't have an umbrella, and at first I ducked my face, trying inexplicably to shield my eyes from the rain. And as I did I began to think about that reflex - why, why bother hiding my face when water fell in the air all around me? So I turned my face up to it, just for a few seconds, eyes open, and let the sky flood me. And I was struck with this incredible feeling of sadness because I realized , face wet with rain, that I have been mentally dead for weeks. Months. And that it was I who elected to be that way.
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[18 Dec 2006|01:53am]
Always, always, I feel a desperate need to perfect what is imperfect.
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[13 Dec 2006|03:30am]
I want to meet someone unlike anyone I have met before, and when I do, I want to love and be loved desperately, foolishly, inconveniently, helplessly. I feel old, like thrift store air and stale bread, like dry rubber bands and fading dye. I want to be new, like grass after first rainfall and the smell of chopped cilantro, like unworn leather shoes and blank journals. I want my interest sparked. It is a strange moment when you realize that you are now a person who you never thought you could be, would be. It is a strange moment when you realize that you can't remember what it was like before it all, before these past few years drained you from yourself.
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[09 Dec 2006|03:54am]
And I will always choose the broken ones, the sad hurt messed up broken boys who don't know what they are or why, or who they want to be. And I will allow myself to hope that in allowing myself to love these terrible, lovely boys I will be safe - that they will never be loved by anyone but me. That I will be safe in the knowledge that my love for them is unique and rare and that they will love me for loving them as they should be loved. The broken ones deserved to be loved.

And I will aways watch when they walk away from me, when they choose the girls who are beautiful and simple, who love them without knowing that they are broken. And the boy always loves the unbroken vision of himself he sees in the eyes of that beautiful, simple girl. And I will always know that they are broken, truly, and that no one will ever love them the way that I do. And every time they leave I will be inexplicably surprised. And I will always wonder where the boys are who love the broken girls, knowing painfully and awfully and unavoidably that the broken girl may someday leave them for a beautiful simple boy who loves them as if they are beautiful and simple. But I find neither. And they keep leaving, again, and again. And I am always surprised, despite the dwindling trust I have for any of them, broken or otherwise. They keep leaving, and I keep loving them, and every time, a little more, I want to stop loving at all.
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Umbrella, just in case. [27 Nov 2006|03:32am]
It poured today, for hours. The house is freezing and I ineffectively light a dozen scented tea candles in my room in a sad attempt at creating my own warmth. Everything has that wet sound, wet smell. The cars going by on Laurel sound like they're being driven through a shallow pool, and sirens wail somewhere on the other side of town. I momentarily miss my tiny single in the on campus apartment we had last year, which had a heater and was easy to warm because of its closet-like size. I love my room in this house, truly, but when it's cold outside it quickly starts to feel large and empty and frigid, and the three single paned windows that I usually adore suddenly seem cruelly amused by my sad little tea candles. I am shivering.

I need to spend more time both alone and outside of my room, a combination that rarely occurs unless I am coming or going from classes or running errands downtown. I should meander pointlessly, stroll without objective, walk nowhere. By myself. When I am alone I see things. I see a thousand things every day that I store away inside my head and hope to someday have a use for. A girl with a broken heel, a woman with a large yellow purse, a boy who is young enough to adore his mother possessively, completely, an old woman eating raspberries with her eyes closed, a kite stuck in a magnolia tree, a lost shoe, a waitress running after a man leaving the restaurant, his cell phone in her outstretched hand, a piece of graffiti they keep painting over but that keeps reappearing, a girl hopping over the cracks in the sidewalk in front of our house, a red winged blackbird.

The days have not been that hard as of late, but sometimes premonition prickles up my spine and I know this will not last, as ever. Some things fail to change. On the hard days seeing all of these things, these beautiful useless transient things, can ache. I am going to Virginia soon, where I will continue to search the forests for all that I have lost. For all that I have willfully abandoned and shamefully forgotten. I am trying so hard, so hard, so hard, Father, to be believable. To be glad. For you. There was a time you would not leave me in the house alone for fear that you would return to find me dead. Someday we will both be able to stop pretending, I that I am happy and you that you believe it.
swim

It would be easy. [16 Nov 2006|12:48am]
There are times when I am in love with nearly everyone I see. On the bus a boy I awkwardly stood next to at the bus stop yelled something, laughing, but I couldn't hear him above the music in my ears. I imagine that he is simply in love with the world, completely apathetic to the people who stare at him as he laughs aloud. I am trying to write a piece on regret. I ask, what is your greatest regret? I do not know what my greatest regret is. I am habitually without regret. But there are some moments, some words, some actions that I will regret as long as I remember them. And I hope that my memory does not serve me well.

I have been happy for two days, genuinely happy. Khalid, thank you. For whatever reason talking to you as put me here, in an unlikely and rare state of mind. Sam said, she sounds too happy to be sober. I do not want to be like that, I don't. Tonight I danced, screaming the lyrics of Bohemian Rhapsody in a dark living room. Later, I sat on the balcony alone mouthing the words to Sufjan's song and felt terrible and great and sad and integrated. I was everything at once, and it was overwhelming and beautiful. Every night I wash away my makeup and then stare at myself in the bathroom mirror, hesitant to see what I am beneath the paint. Beneath the white lie. And then I wish that I was brave enough to allow someone outside of this finite circle to see me like this, nude and nervous. Spend the night, I would say. And I would wake up with them beside me, no longer alone in this bed that I am forced to fill with pillows in a vain attempt to compensate, to fool my own unconscious. It never works anyway. I wake up cold. I do not have to do that, wake up cold. I hope (question mark?). But every night I go to bed alone and when I wake up, tousled and without my daily, public face I am momentarily grateful that again, again I went to bed alone. It hurts to be grateful for isolation. Someday I will throw away the paint and face the world as I wake up, but not yet. I am not ready yet. To roll over and have them say, you're beautiful like this - that would be a great and terrifying gift. At least I have something to hope for, yet.
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Letters to myself. [06 Nov 2006|12:56am]
I am vaguely sick and subsequently find that I have time to think. Drugged, uncomfortable, suffocating thought. I usually avoid this part. Lately I have been writing in my blank journals daily, sometimes more. I am trying to retain, to create some kind of evidence so that in five, ten years I will have tangible documentation of who I am now. Rereading some of what I have written I am absolutely terrified. Some things are getting worse. Worse every day. A terrible air of desperation, of bitterness. Despair. Despair seems like such a strong, almost ridiculous dramatic word but I have the textual evidence to support such a claim, all painstakingly recorded in indelible black ink in so many journals that used to be beautifully, blissfully blank. An admission. I am scared. Legitimately frightened of myself, of what I think and write when I am given time. I never remember the next day, what I have written, and when I read it I am scared. It isn't right, to be scared of yourself. Something in me begs to burn the evidence, to destroy the words I may someday read and laugh over. Cry over. Some evidence I can't destroy, the brands of what I have felt. Letters to myself, all so neat and meticulous, written out in that beautiful penmanship I worked so long to cultivate despite my shaking hands. Straight bright lines. I run my fingers over the surface and feel the ridges and indentations left by the pressure of my hand, the metal tip of my pen. I am getting to the point where I am afraid to be alone with myself, afraid what new things I will show myself. What new evidence I will carefully create and then forget for days, until I am too curious not to look. For the last 48 hours I have been paying for two weeks of drunken forgetfulness, for sloppy avoidance and cheap wine. Bottles of Chuck thrown back casually, night after night. My sickness today is the evidence. A bodily letter to myself: don't forget what you've done. I pay for everything eventually.
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[15 Oct 2006|02:28am]
I really don't know how much longer I can keep doing this.
swim

Learning more and more about less and less and less. [10 Oct 2006|11:41pm]
My room is yellow. I once read that prologued exposure to the color yellow has been found to facilitate feelings of depression. Hot diggity. My bed is too large and red, and I fill it with pillows at night so that I can sleep without feeling alone. I have decided to be more honest in future, because while extreme privacy comforts me it does little for my relationships with other people. I would describe myself as a fiercely private person, although strangely enough I am not fiercely introverted. Today in lecture the enigmatic Ralph Quinn was describing the danger of over-identification with the persona, as described by Carl Jung. It was a little too familiar for comfort. In the past two years I have learned a few pieces of information in lectures that have resonated with me. In Gothic Literature I learned that, according to Freud, we may develop melancholia not only in the event of someone's death, but also in the event of growing up. We may miss our past selves, and become melancholic, thereby seeking to integrate aspects of our past selves into our present self. I found this fascinating, and, again, too familiar for comfort. Maybe I am simply self-obsessed. Most people seem to be, though. I think it'd be rather silly to be anything but self-obsessed, because, really, I am all that I have and know that I will always have, for as long as I live. I am stuck with me. It seems logical that I come to know myself as thoroughly as possible, in the same way that someone might come to know the person they are stuck on an island with. Take that as you will, foul-minded readers.

I live on Laurel Street, which is a major thoroughfaire in downtown Santa Cruz, and it is one part loveliness and the other strangeness. My balcony puts me at level with a group of perpetually blooming magnolia trees, but simultaneously gives me a view of the rather eccentric inhabitants of this town. Sometimes both of these things are lovely. Sometimes not. The couple across the street fighting in their front yard, or sirens, or drunk sorority girls vomiting on their stumbling paths home, or tweens at the Fosters' Freeze, or homeless people going through the ashtray on our porch, or car accidents (extremely frequent at the intersection of Cedar and Laurel), or the whine of the one mosquito that always manages to find me. Or, locals carrying armloads of flowers and vegetables home from the Wednesday farmers' market, or the conversations of the countless people who walk by without noticing me, or the man who smiles and tells you that you're a beautiful woman (since when are we women?), or the muscle bound man in a pickup listening to Aimee Mann, or the neighbor playing his guitar on the front porch, or the smell of magnolias before they fall from the tree, or the house shaking slightly, just slightly as the 16 Laurel East bus goes by on its way to campus, or the view of the "crack-house" (alleged) directly across the street, or the aroma of bagels wafting over from the bagelry when it is far too early to get up and actually get some bagels.

The house was built in 1895, and two days ago while exploring the recesses of the attic I fell through the floor. Life is completely absurd.
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[07 Oct 2006|11:48pm]
Oh, just shut up.
swim

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