Tuesday, September 25, 2012
When I was a little girl I began building my perfect house. It was made of books and fantasies. That foundation hid the shotgun house that was paper thin and let in the mosquitoes as if we lived outside. I actually don't remember this. These are my mother's memories. I see it as if I remember but I don't. She told me how we slept in front of the fan and she still had to wave the mosquitoes off of me. I remember staying up to watch Friday night videos on our grainy non-cable television that required pliers to change the channel. That was another brick. Three minute fantasies set the music or a laugh track. I can still remember being shocked there was no audience to respond to my elementary school jokes.
When I was older, I continued building that mansion, that house with food. I cannot tell you what I ate all the time, but I remember thinking, do normal people eat a gallon of ice cream in one sitting? That was the closest I came to figuring out if there was a problem for at least a decade. In the meantime, I told myself I was still 'developing'. The crock of BS I told myself is amazing. But necessary. You can't have a house to protect you from life, emotions and pain without a healthy dose of BS to seal the cracks.
For a while, that house was heaven. I would sit down with ice cream and a book and I felt nothing, saw nothing and heard nothing. I resented when anyone seemed to intrude. When the nice girl sat down at my table to visit with me in my college lunchroom, I looked at her as if she was the most awful thing in the world. Until she went away. Instead of making friends, I pushed everyone away and burrowed into the perfect cave I made. I lost a good decade this way. There were no boyfriends, there were no great friends or road trips. Looking back, it seems like I was on a drinking binge that went on for years that I can't quite remember. I pretended my journey to another state was an adventure instead of me running from what my life had become. A dead end.
That's what I feel right now. I have lost so much time and opportunity and I want to recognize that for a bit before I move on and try to heal and get some of my life back.