I could not want any more for this to be any different, for these states to disappear completely and leave me to what little happiness I’ve clung to for 28 years.

But this is not the case and there is nothing to be done about it, but lay in bed, with the sun highlighting my keyboard and the birds and the city outside chiding me for wasting a day like today on this, wasting a day like today indoors, when we intended to be outside, enjoying the sunlight while we have it and pulling in all the Vitamin D that I can.

It is a trick of the mind, to shut the blinds and push the world away, to roll over next to the cat and take a nap at noon when you’re not tired, but I won’t do that because there is nothing worse than lying to yourself, instead I’ll lay here, words slipping into memo talk from the office work I’ve done this week, and let the sunlight tease my skin and the cat stare at me incredulously for not getting her a bird from outside. I’ll lay here, under the covers even though I’m slightly not because this is the state and this is what happens — writing and wishing I had the willpower to fight myself and the weight of everything to joie de vivre.

I will find reasons to waste more time, picking at my cuticles, playing another game on my phone, reading some more of my book, not because I want to do any of those things but because the state dictates it so. If I lay here without occupying myself I slip further into the state and then it becomes unbearable, the weight of everything — the demands, the expectations of each person and each commitment and the failures of doing any of the above well enough to get away with it long enough to avoid this state. This place. This dark hole I slip into, afraid each time that I cannot find my way out…walking in the caves without a flashlight or a granola bar, unready for the darkness I’ll find that will take the last piece of humanity left in me, the last remnants of the smile and laughter of last week. Will it eat me alive this time? Will I succumb to the thing I still fantasize about as an adult? Just giving in to everything and letting it take me, wandering the dark and becoming part of it finally, adjusting my eyes to something that isn’t there, but is.

No, I’ll stare at the sunlight on the cat’s fur, on my keyboard and I’ll let the state have this time, but no longer.

I am entirely aware that I have not published any chapters for awhile. I need to take some time out and do some writing. I know.

I have never entirely been sure how I feel about all of this. I am not the bearer of my own fate.

And it could be that I am afraid of letting go. Letting it all take its own course to where it will go. But the fear and the thrill of flying through it all is frightening. I let go before, you know. I let it go as far as it could, full well knowing that it would hurt later. Full well knowing that I was speeding to my defeat. But I wanted to try.

And you have been there. You have been there waiting every step of the way, waiting with laughter and everything I could have needed. Letting everything go is frightening because who knows where it will end up and that last time ended worse than I could have ever expected. I cannot be the bearer of my own fate but of how do we wish that we had the power to change everything we wanted. To have an inkling of everything that mattered.

I want to tell you and I want to tell fate that this is not the right way. It is supposed to stay here, not go over there. We are supposed to go this way. THIS way, the way I had charted in my head and planned for. But the signs are pointing that way. That way over there.

But man, that is not the fate I had intended. At all.

I worried I heard you whisper
into the night
into the wall
that you loved me
your leg thrown over mine
in a subconscious attempt to claim me for you
the buzz of siren of the city outside

The guilt sank in
There’s nothing wrong with you
There’s nothing wrong with me
but it’s not going to be enough
a perfectly plated meal
an earnest look
a wish for something more
that we both ignore

Your voice in the night
whispering something
that I never wanted to hear

The journal was a thing, not a person. The journal should not have feelings, wants or desires. The journal should not speak, should not dictate.

But it did.

It was alone. It was surrounded.

It was hers, it was a guide to no where in particular. It did not tell the future and it was not meant to make her fortunes better. It was no decades old, passed down from mother to daughter to improve luck and win the lottery, there was no ritual. It had been made partially by hand, partially by factory, bought by the mother in a bookstore long ago.

It had dreams of being the conduit to the next great American novel or keeping the secrets of an heiress which would later become a memoir which would later become a movie on Lifetime. But it was empty.

It had been full of hopes and dreams and words that the mother had collected and saved from magazines written in the dark light of the morning or overheard in the grocery store. The words had fallen away and continued to fall away into the books that washed over the girl, her dark hair splayed on the couch, the cat purring itself in contentment. The words were never to be seen and would not be seen except sometimes the journal liked one.

It liked pennies.

It liked the light way it glanced off the tongue and how tiny yet important the shiny coper pieces were. It liked the double ns, the way you could let the eeeeeeeis slide up or down into light or dark or be as crisp as a autumn apple. It liked the word

So it kept it. It kept it from sliding off the page into the books collected about the ramshackle apartment like a hoarder or nothing but paper and lost love.

The journal cried for the girl who had been heartbroken twice over, somewhat by her own device. The journal cried words and sniffled punctuation marks. The journal lay alone, surrounded by the other books that did not feel as it did, did not talk did not cry words did not hold hopes and dreams just words printed on a page once written by a man or woman in a cabin or hotel room hoping that they had written the next great novel hoping that maybe the advance would be enough to pay the rent. The books were not like the journal. Not at all.

Was listening to this…got thinking. Something quick to get it out of my head

Hanging on the edge
I got up and said “I have to go”
Too late to undo last night
Too soon to try and fix it all
In the silence of the morning
piling on sins to wash away it all
tearing everything I know apart

Come over
the words escaped my fingers
and then it was too late
just to get a hand on mine
an arm around my waist
piling on sins
to rush the forget
the more the more the more and it’ll all be OK.

I don’t like who I became with you
and I am only so sure of who I am
piling on the sins
looking for the needles
just to feel the pain
and find myself in their arms

Maybe just once
I’ll get it right
and I’ll forget
who I was with you.

Piling on the sins
piling on the sins
and in the ashes
I’ll be there.

This is not a story to make anyone feel better and maybe there are no fairy tale endings here, but there is something. The wash wash wash of the words and the spilling of letters onto white can ease. There is no moral, there is no overt struggle.

It is not easy, it is not hard. This is a story. Just a story about a girl, a boy, another boy, a journal and a life. Maybe there will be more people, maybe less.

Stop reading now if you want to leave with a better view of the world.

I sent it back
I sent it back to you

I sent it back because the other day I found it in my bag and it hit me like a train. The anger and sorrow associated with it was too much. So, I sent it back.

I didn’t sign it. I could have, but I couldn’t sign the note.

Why? Because of the flowers at my door, because of the self-centered need you had to keep part of me, even when you wouldn’t have all of me. The words came out of your mouth slowly, like a dying man’s spittle. They still fucked me up beyond recognition.

I am only as beautiful as I imagine and my self portrait will never be the same. The older you get, the more you give, hoping, just hoping, that this time, this time it will stick. The more jaded we get with age, battlescars from trying to love the unlovable, the ones who deemed themselves unworthy to love others, but could not keep themselves away from someone warm next to them at night. I cannot change what has been undone, but I can build another sandcastle, one where it’s OK to take a day off and lay at the beach and OK to work until midnight because it makes me happy. A castle I can live in by myself. Or with someone who sees everything I am, yet wants me to be my version of better.

I sent it back because it hurt to look at it and realize this is what I’ve done to myself. Knowing it would work out like this, but willing to risk it anyway. For what? Exactly for what do we take the risks for? You asked me to bear my soul and took it for granted. So strange, the things we do to ourselves, pushing ourselves over the same cliff over and over again. Is this heartbroken? Or is this the worst sense of regret I’ve let myself feel in ages?

I am not in love with you. You shouldn’t feel smug in knowing that you have ruined me for others, that you were the only one who could break me like this. Life breaks me like this. I break my like this. I am not ruined. I am beautiful, intelligent and everything you never saw, nor took care to keep safe. You were reckless with the gifts I gave you, yet I am gentle with what I am sending back. This is not forever, and I know by sending it back that this is it. I am happy. I am happy in a storm.

It will be in the mail tomorrow. Sent to somewhere you might be. It might get to you, it might not. But it doesn’t matter.

I sent it back.