July 8, 2007

what i'm trying to say is something.

[note: never begin a serious attempt at writing something of substance by first swinging by myspace. you'll be sucked into the hole for a good 10 minutes and then forget what you were going to say in the first place. because. look at all the funny pictures. heh. and oh! a survey bulletin. that'll be fun...i wonder whatever happened to whats his name from middle school. ad nauseum.]

1 am. i cannot sleep. i sigh a lot. toss. turn. accidentally steal covers.
"what's going on?" she asks. "i'm having a hard night."
"tell me about it?" she asks.

i can't get a deep breath, i tell her. everytime i breathe in, my lungs don't fill; it's not enough. like a panic attack, the walls close in. i flail around. i know what i need: air. life. and i try and try and my skin crawls and please i just want it to stop. relief. please.

writing. writing has always been breathing and i can't breathe anymore.
and i want it so badly. i remember what it feels like to draw in fresh air, to exhale. satisfied. energy coursing through my veins, all the way down to my fingertips and onto the keyboard.

we spent a rainy 4th of july with helen's mum. small talk went a little like this:

"so, annie, are you writing anything?"
uh no.
"really? well, what are you reading?"
nothing, actually.
"oh, are you taking pictures?"
not really.
"are you playing your guitar"?
you know, i'm not...

and i was embarrassed! embarrassed because my prolific journaling self has not written an entry in over a year. and my beautiful camera sits, collecting dust. and books? anything i read is informative and dry. the music doesn't swell. the air in this space i am occupying is thinning. i am dumbed down and bored of myself.

i know that i chose to exile myself for awhile. it was self preservation in lean times. writing = faith, and faith = too much pain. therefore, not writing eased the pain of a broken faith.

i am a woman of faith. i have faith in words.

words to transcend.
words to heal.
words to bring relief to tired lungs.

i know i still have it in me to breathe deeply again.
and it is here that i return to my beloved etty hillesum. she was my age when she was writing her way into a real inner life. for five years, i have clung to her journey like my own roadmap. (sparrow, i still cannot thank you enough for giving her to me.)

here is a thought of etty's that keeps me writing tonight:

Ultimately, we have just one moral duty: to reclaim large areas of peace in ourselves, more and more peace, and to reflect it towards others. And the more peace there is in us, the more peace there will be in our troubled world.

my exile was about bringing peace into the chaos of my first years of living publicly as a lesbian.

i am stronger now. more at peace with who i am as a woman. a lesbian. a person.

i'm breathing. i'm breathing.
hang in there with me, i'm still writing a half hour after i began this ramble.
i am trying so hard to get these words out. what am i trying to say? (you must be asking yourselves that by now.)

i am trying to say that if i can find my way back to the words, peace will only deepen within me. and if i keep writing as the peace deepens, maybe you'll see it. recognize it. and peace will deepen within you too.

when all is calm, in heavenly peace, our breaths even out. steady. rhythmic. deep and sustaining. inhale. exhale. and rest. what more can we give one another?

Posted by bananie at July 8, 2007 11:51 PM |

Bananie, do you know the Enneagram? I've been reading about the different types lately -- interesting & enlightening...

Posted by: jaz at July 10, 2007 1:36 PM

Beautiful post Annie. Maybe revisit the early years of your blog. Read it from the beginning and see if something calls out to you to expand...or not. I will sit and wait regardless for when the words come to you, I want to hear them.

Posted by: maxine at July 10, 2007 7:48 PM

jane, yes, i studied the enneagram probably about 5 years ago in college. i think i am a type 4 :)

maxine, thank you. you've been a reader since the beginning, and i greatly appreciate you sticking around for the journey!

Posted by: bananie at July 10, 2007 7:59 PM

You've convinced me to read etty, and I don't see how you can't not write (did that come across clearly?) Maybe not every moment of every day, but someday and (as always) beautifully.

Posted by: Lisa C at July 14, 2007 8:11 AM
Post a comment