Sunday, May 22, 2011

Better than a Dream

I had a very vivid dream last night.  I was a teenager, albeit a total screw up (which is quite true to reality) living with a strange mother and two dogs.  It seemed that we were nomadically relocating all over the world and in the midst of another new town.  I could feel the uncertainty of what was to come, the intoxicating mixture of adventure and nausea that I was facing with my jaw jutting forward and my head held high.  My entire being was saying 'BRING IT', as I looked forward to peeling back the layers of yet another experience.  It was a high as potent as any chemically induced one.

I actually remember that feeling quite well.  When I was younger I lived for new things, new faces, new places and got a rush like you wouldn't believe from not knowing exactly what was going to happen next.  The epitome of reckless, I dove into everything head first, only coming up for air when absolutely necessary.  Sometimes it took me down an ugly rabbit hole, other times it payed off in spades.  I've got memories stamped solidly in my head to carry lovingly from all those days, both the disastrous ones and the ones that actually didn't blow up in my face.  I was brave and stupid all at once, I let my fear of the unknown drive me to charge into life like a bull zeroing in on a matador.

That was a long time ago.  I am now, quite possibly, the furthest thing imaginable from that wild girl.  Obviously, life and its responsibilities makes it much harder to go with every whim that pops into one's head, but I know damn well that it's so much more than that.  I just lost it,  I can now admit it easily.  I don't crave adventure, I snuggle into familiarity and routine.  My favorite place to be is in my bedroom, far from strange faces and break in my structure.  'Controlled environment' is one of my favorite and smile inducing thoughts.  Frankly,  I'm well aware that by all appearances, I probably seem like one of the more boring people you may know.

If you've read my blog since the beginning, you know that I'm one to happily wallow in nostalgia.  That being said, it would make sense that I would have awoken from my dream and once I was coherent enough to get my brain going I would have reverted to a mixture of sullen and pensive, yearning for a taste of yesterday.   In that sense, I'm pretty predictable.   But today it didn't go down like that at all.   Maybe it was all that extra sleep I got,  once my glasses were placed on my face I saw that it was a bit past eight in the morning.

Twenty minutes later I found myself in the kitchen with Husband, sipping on my first cup of coffee and losing myself in the dreamy voice of Tom Waits, who is still crooning to me in the background as I type this.   I sat quietly and helped chop vegetables and chicken for Husband's breakfast creation while thinking that the temperature in the house was perfect.  'I'm neither hot or cold, this is amazing.'   No one was irritating me this morning with too many words.   Husband cooked, The Teen was obviously still sleeping in and The Kid shuffled around aimlessly while reading about lighthouses in his underwear, still rubbing sleep from his eyes.  No one talked, Tom Waits just continued singing.

Ahhh.  Things haven't been easy for me lately.  I get a bit resentful of the fact that being an adult at this stage in my life sometimes feels akin to drowning in personal sacrifice, it's one series of 'have to' after another…. what I want doesn't seem relevant all that much in day to day life.  This feeling makes it easy to be negative and romanticize the past.  After all, it's pretty easy to forget all the shit that comes with wild days.  My trade off for adventure and craziness is peace, plain and simple.   My peace has been essential for my personal long term survival.   I'm not too confident about how long I would have lasted without stumbling upon it.  I suspect I would have had a pretty early demise, gone down in flames for good.

In moments like this, things are so clear to me.  Maybe I won't feel like this at seven thirty tonight (even in my currently boring life, I have realized that the rug can easily be pulled out from under me with no notice in the ugliest way possible…oh, how I've learned), I know I won't feel this way tomorrow while I'm elbow deep in drama at my bullshit job tomorrow at approximately five thirty in the evening…. but I'm not letting that matter.  In this second, it's still clear.   Right at this very moment, things are vastly better than a dream, even an intoxicating one.   I'm going to ride this 'living in the moment' concept for as long as my brain will allow me to.  


  1. I can't believe how similar your past is to mine. The sentiments you express are the same.

    Except I'm still living recklessly. You wouldn't have gone down in flames. I haven't. They said with all conviction I wouldn't reach 30. Then it was 40.

    Now it's 50.

    But as Charles Bukowski said: one day, they will be right.

    But between then and now, there are great words to be written. Words Left behind for a world that never truly knew me, or understood my meaning. Sacrifice comes with all walks of life, my dear woman. They will only remember me as the greatest writer of my generation. They will think my life framed by rainbows. They will never comprehend that the life I lead is a necessary sacrifice to do what I do and to be who I am.

    We must be true to ourselves, whatever the cost.

  2. Indeed. There is sacrifice in anything worth doing, I'd imagine. No one has it all.

    I should mention that I have decided to stop making flippant predictions on this blog, because it's the second time I've just casually written something down only to have it be true.

    Damn good thing that my morning made me so happy, because the day went to total shit. By 7:30, the rug had been so firmly pulled out from under me that I was picking my ass off the floor trying to figure out what exactly had happened.

    Well, it's not so surprising, in retrospect. I did, after all, write it right here. Man should, at best, expect happy moments, not happy times.

  3. This morning I finished writing my 3rd novella. A character in the book came out with something I think is true:

    "Happiness is just a form of temporary neurosis."

    And there we have it.

  4. Excellent (and true)! Hope to get to read it eventually.