Can’t Find The Man of My Dreams ‘Cause I Don’t Sleep

 

I'm definitely the baby in this picture

I'm definitely the baby in this picture, lol

Every five minutes the thing nearest me changed into a mistake and disappeared. —Tao Lin

I’m in, if, of, and. I miss him like writing with my left hand. Tea cup got up and said “damn, that’s bad.” The what you’ve got til’ it’s gone. Watching me sleep. Zumba drop out. Clothes don’t fold themselves. Walls don’t happen to paint themselves fireplace red. Over my head. Send to journals. Write it. Revise it. Read it. Scratch it out. Insomniacs anonymous. He winked at me! And then I am there. I love it when a man winks. Then I have blacked. Then I am where? He said welcome to my world and held my hand while we were going under. I don’t swim like a fishie. How come they don’t tell you the things you want are gonna hurt this much? I’m poppin’ Motrins on a roller coaster.

~~~

*Woman of my dreams, I don’t sleep so I can’t find her* actual lyric by Lil Wayne

5 Things I Can Help

“Stop assuming the negative I don’t give you reasons to,” [redacted] says to me.

“I can’t help it??” And he snapped back faster than ever, “Well, what can you help?”

Occupational hazard. Writers plan for the worst and secretly hope for the best. It’s a defense mechanism for publishing rejection. I cannot promise him I can stop doing that. But I wrote something to help him believe in my try:

The Things I Can Help

1. UuHm. [Clears throat] I definitely can help myself to another serving of, spending as much time as I can with you in order to know (enough in advance) what I want to help myself to.

2. I can help appreciating it after you treat me like we’re in a slow-motioned old-fashioned movie and you’re  behaving like Noah in The Notebook, give a little, then leave something mysteriously amiss—wouldn’t hurt if your look was sincere and you made an effort to stare longingly into my eyes.

3. Moreover, I would help myself to your psyche and while you seem to believe you would not want to walk with me on the beach; not walking with me on the beach would only lead me to discovering my full potential… which is destined to be an old, lonely, rich writer in Paris. I can help that.

4. I can help the way I write, and I can help myself to a second helping as you are so frikkin good for my writing that I have to ask if it’s selfish, or I have to ask if it’s too soon to beg that you never leave me yet? Or tell me when it’s safe to ask that? And don’t take too long to respond, a bitch got deadlines.

5. And what else can I help? You o you my tough little nookie-crook could help out in loosening-up-with-all-your-mite so I can help bind you to me exponentially and that would somehow reverse your adverse reaction to my cupcake-flavored lip gloss—which at one point your dislike of it made me sad—which was too bad because I envisioned no more a sweeter vision than you and I holding hands [the off-limits gesture] and making love daily, singing kumbiyahhhhhh my looooooord kumbiyuuuuuuow as you propose in a romantically aligned stupor that which results in my instantaneous pregnancy and combustion. Amen.

I’m not shy, I guess, it’s just the butterflies, they’re eating me alive.

All of a sudden, I’m clingy. I caught myself. Usually intimacy creates it, this time—I blame the butterflies.

~~~

I like to call it smothersome. And boy have I had some of this medicine before. I don’t mean the gentlemenly “You look beautiful tonight,” I mean the “I’m going to attempt to kiss you four times in five minutes, come back to check on you, peek-a-boo around the corner-honey is that you, hi, I’m still here… just looking at you, watching you go about your business, studying your eyebrows and then guess what I’m going to do, honey-honey! honey! I’m going to kiss you. Yes, again. Mmmmuah” Seriously, I want to give up on people. [Shake-my-head.]

So what happened you ask? O, besides subtleties? O besides someone that knows how to play the push me once on the swing and let me flap my legs for a bit on my own, then come back and push me slightly—then run when I say “again!” He slips off, then pops up behind me when I’m least expecting it-game. See, it’s the same but quite different. Did I know about it until it hit me? Maybe once or twice before, but it’s very very different. Butterflies are more like dragonflies when you’re an adult. Like the bigger the elephant the harder it falls, maybe?

~~~

Case in point: The other day I was conveniently gossiping about the new cutie patoot. The conversation was getting so interesting, but I had somewhere to go, and I’d already started out too late. I decided it’d be a bright idea to bring my bestie (on the phone) into the shower with me via the cordless phone. I sat the cordless phone alongside the tub and decided to shower with her on speakerphone blasting and bursting with laughter— it went something like:

“Grrrrrrrrl, I know, I know! I know right?! Right!” I continued on explaining to her that I know it’s early, we just met, I know like only a few weeks but I feel (giggles) clingy. Like. I’m human. My emotions are carbonated lava and he likes to kiss five different places on my forehead and then doze off across the bed and pretend I’m not there.

Subtlety, S-O-L-D. Like rose gold. Like a garage sale, everything must go.

I’m smack dab in the middle of confession 101 when my son runs full speed into the bathroom and vehemently bangs and shakes the shower sliding door. I freak the hell out, slip the soap, slop the towel and the cordless phone slides jollily down into the shower water as I fancy a jump-hop-scream AaAAah of terror I’d be electrocuted back into my good sense anyway. I did all of this magicianship stark naked, mind you.

Today I spent $20 replacing the cordless phone battery after having dried it out inside of a plastic bag with a hair dryer like my good ole google-friends told me to.

And yes, and yet, I’m still fighting this, example #2: The other night, I swore North, South, East, West, and upside down that I didn’t like holding hands. It’s funny as soon as you draw a line how much you yearn to blur it. Now all I want is for him to grab for my hand. I want him to take off work and play in the sandbox, pink sand of course. I want him to hold my hand and hold it while he tells me the biggest storybook story with the most enormous imagination. Queue artful silence I like.

And yet, I would very much like him to keep holding my hand. And I guess that makes me clingy. Or irksome. Or what I’d coin as smothersome from some folks in my past in which I shall not name. Ah, the other foot is so hard to wear. I suppose I’d rather be slightly ornamental—sniffing him in like the tip of a permanent marker. Because what does it say about someone who doesn’t have an ounce of overdose in their blood? Someone without that race in their genetic make-up? That she sticks to no one? Or that she sticks to everyone? Or that she’s unemployable? I sorta dig long-term. Sigh SMH again.

~~~

He got really quiet the other night, and I pouted, well, because, well, you see actually … I just wanted his undivided attention.

How absolutely OUT of character of me.

I guess it’s just the butterflies, they’re eating me alive.

I Regret You and Your Mama Too!

I regret “spooning,” I regret his over-excitedness about daily regurgitating tasks, I regret the handholding—the squeezing, I regret all the big dreams about French doors and ponytails. I regret going along with it all by thinking I’d grow into it.

I’m 28 years old and I’ve never been in love. I’ve only been in regret.

I can explain. You meet someone and you fall impeccably, dancing around lampposts “in love” with them, their smell, the habits they have that you initially think are cute. Wait for it…

You meet their Mom and you’re sold. She’s nice, which is the best word to use about any man’s mother you just met. You meet his kid(s). I once fell in regret with a man who had two little girls. Prettiest peaches ever. No, I mean impossibly, selflessly, itching under my skin to be around him and his kids. It wasn’t as hard as some claim to get children to “like” you, but again, this was only one experience, and only my experience. I was pushing the four year old on the swing and the seven year old was coloring with me at the park in no time. Cake. The issue is, the moments you remember most—like a movie, those moments that incessantly replay, aren’t the moments of fancy dinners or dotes, but are the moments you had to catch your breath with overwhelm, the moments you’ve said to yourself “I want this.”

Thing is, when you fall, you fall hard for their families too. I recently watched “How to Lose Your Lover” on Netflix. A funny chic fling movie about a writer convinced he’s over LA life, so he does everything he can to rid himself of excess LA baggage, including women. He goes off about pissing everyone in his corner off. He shoves his love interest into uncomfortable positions such as meeting her parents and his friends on the first and second dates. An interesting concept indeed. I think this way now. I’ve realized that so many people wait the three months, six months or years before they meet the friends and family of their significant others only to find it plops. People don’t realize that when you date a person (for the most part) you date their loud ass mom, their overprotective dad, their sneaky sister, their ignorant ass friends, and their horribly annoying children.

If you think you can handle it, you should know sooner rather than later about the people you might love regret.

Case in point: when you love, you love the bad about a person sometimes even more than the good. This wanes and regrets once it’s over, often while it still is. Gretchen Rubin says in “The Happiness project” a book I’m currently reading “I knew that my combativeness and pedantry in this conversation came not from petty irritation but from a desire to protect myself against false hopes.” I completely agree with her. False hopes.

I regret not learning how to “fight right,” as in, pick my battles. I regret not loving myself enough to love anyone else. I regret having to admit that I went crazy before I got this half-right. Only half. I regret the growing up process and all the short sticks I give and get. I regret the shit out of not getting to know a person enough not to regret the whole damn thing.

I’ve never been in love, only regret. Funny what you regret is what could be what you’ve loved the most. Funny what you regret is what you’ve learned the most from.

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