Nothingness & Creativity

I’m not as depressed as I sound. I’m more…stuck. And that’s been making me depressed. I feel like all my posts combined on this blog make me sound like I’m completely depressed. But the whole reason I started this blog was so that I would have a space to vent and let go, so, you know, there you go. ūüôā¬†

It’s been so easy for me to get lost in the nothing-ness, to create the nothing-ness, even as I yearn to create something. It’s not that I enjoy the nothing-ness, quite the opposite actually. I despise it; it’s the worst thing in the world. The more I go into it, the harder it gets to pull myself out of it.

Why is DC so hard to get to? Why is it so out of reach? What is it about me that isn’t good enough for DC? What is it about me that isn’t good enough for any of the guys I like? What is it about me that isn’t good enough for Allamiah? How much longer can I continue this way?

If it’s not one thing, it’ll be something else. What happens if I do get accepted to graduate school? Who am I kidding that I’ll allow myself to get $75,000 into debt to pay for this dream? Who am I kidding that I’m ever going to find what I want to do, be truly content that what I do matters, makes a difference,¬†and¬†makes me happy? Who am I kidding with all of this?

I ache to create something. I want to grab a notebook and pen and sit down and…create…something. But when my life is in limbo and I’m allowing myself to ignore it, allowing myself to push it away so I don’t have to look at it, pushing it away and away and away. Well, that’s no solution obviously. If I can’t get anywhere by ignoring my problem, the reasonable and normal thing to do is to face it and find a solution. It’s not that I lack the courage to do that, it’s that I lack the tools. It’s like math all over again: I’ve convinced myself so well I can’t do it that I don’t even bother trying to find a way anymore. I can’t go back to Houston. I can’t. I can’t face everyone, and God knows, God knows I can’t do the wedding. I¬†hate¬†weddings. I hate seeing everyone. I hate the entire community. I’m not going to go back, no one can make me. No one’s going to make me go back and sit quietly through hours, and days, and weeks of people telling my mom that I looked like this and I looked like that and oh, why can’t she buy me nice¬†fashionable¬†clothes? Everyone, everyone, everyone. Don’t understand why I can’t just be normal and happy? That’s why. I’m a different person completely when I’m in new company. I ooze confidence and charm and happiness. People love me. And why wouldn’t they? I’m such a normal, happy person around them¬†because that’s who I am. And then I go home. To the community. Ahh, the community. And they take who I am at heart, and they twist it, and I become stressed out, so stressed out, and I completely lose my confidence, and I’m therefore no longer happy. Without my happiness I’m not me. Why take someone who’s natural tendency is to be happy and turn her into that? I. Don’t. Know. ¬†

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Liege and Lief

I keep discovering how alike everyone is. I know it’s a cliche, but the more I see it the less depressed I get. I’m not actually depressed, alhamdulillah I’m happy most of the time, but I am in this weird place in life where I’m not sure what I’m feeling half the time. Am I sad? Confused? Apathetic?¬†Sympathetic to the state of the everyone’s (including my own) lives?¬†

So I keep discovering how alike everyone is, especially regardless of skin color and ethnicity. And the more I live my life in this weird feeling state, the more I think, “we’re all so alike, in fact, that they make sitcoms about situations exactly like ours” ‘Ours’, because I’m exactly the same as my white neighbors and my black neighbors and my Asian neighbors and my mixed race neighbors. Family is always, always the same. There are but a few different families in the world, and they all repeat themselves in each of the millions of families in the world. If you’re blessed enough to have both parents living together happily, the problems you have with them are the same problems the family down the street has who doesn’t share your skin color, your religion, your culture, or your language. If you have a single parent, you have the same problems that your other completely-different-from-you-neighbor-with-one-parent has. And on and on.¬†

Ellen¬†DeGeneres¬†has an hour long stand up routine called¬†Here and Now: Modern Life and Other Inconveniences.¬†In it she talks about the trouble we have opening CD’s, getting the brand new roll of toilet paper to start, having someone accidentally spit on you while you’re talking to them, receiving insults disguised as compliments, and the ‘universal sign that you’re irritated’. It’s hilarious. But it’s hilarious because we can all relate to most of it in the end.¬†

So, to quote the album I’m currently listening to, I’m loyal and ready to be a part of it.¬†

Washington, D.C., and Georgetown University

I walked to Georgetown University blindly when I visited DC several years ago. It was a gorgeous, gorgeous day – cool and crisp, and I thought that that was the way the weather always was in DC until I passed two students crossing each others paths and one commented on how beautiful the first day of Spring was. I asked one of them for directions. I’d gotten off the bus on Georgetown street, main Georgetown, and made a turn onto a street that climbed up hill, then made a left onto another street, further inside and packed with adorable houses (town homes?). Trees covered the front, hiding half of each house from outside view. I glanced inside one as I passed it, the window was open and the view was clear. The weather, combined with the glorious trees and friendly banter between the students made it seem as if there were no barrier between the outside and the inside. The window was green and wooden, a cross hatch like the kind they have on log cabins.

The bus driver had told me that I would see Georgetown once I turned ¬†left, I couldn’t miss it. The boy I asked told me to walk a little ways ahead and that it would be on my right, I was going the right way. There was no real barrier either between Georgetown University and DC, the way I thought there would be. I had expected there to be one, but it turned out that it was DC I was looking for, and Georgetown was a boon but not necessary. Or maybe I just felt that way because I had Georgetown, I didn’t need to fight for it at the time.

Nothing happened that day, or in the years that have past since. Except that I now have an image in my head that is not completely made up. I definitely had an image in mind before going to DC, but it wasn’t a disappointment when I encountered the reality. In fact, it fit so smoothly into what I needed that I didn’t even know my two worlds weren’t the same until now. Or maybe that’s not accurate. It wasn’t that reality fitted into my imaginary world, it was that reality was so much better. There was no loneliness because I was only there for a handful of days; and there was interaction with people in academia and with people outside of it, with family and friends. There was beauty, and there was public transportation. There was walking, and there was discovering. And there was the fact that it was Washington, D.C. The D.C.

At Buccees

I know what I look like. What I appear to be. When my clothes and hair hang a certain way. When I have a tired look. Woken up at 4 am, to bed at 1 am. Not a lot of sleep, a long drive to the airport, a long drive back.

I know what I look like. As I stand in line and ask for a kolache, my mind on other things. The bread I need to buy, the milk. The coffee? Or should I save my money?

I know the self-consciousness when a man comes up behind me in line, asks for a kolache and pronounces it kol-a-chi. Not kolash. I must have said it wrong. Too tired and dazed to care too much, but self conscious a little.

I know what I look like. What I appear to be. When you ask me whether I want my kolash warmed or not, and I say no thank you and then change my mind. As you warm my kolash, as the man comes up behind me and my self-consciousness rises, waiting for you to bring me my food. I know what I look like.

My hair is dry, my glasses red. My hair sticks out from the side some, as if I’ve just gotten out of bed. You don’t know where I’m coming from, I know what I look like. You think I’m on a road trip, my look a result of that. Or do you think I just woke up, live close by, and just¬†desperately¬†wanted a kolache?

You bring me my food, I thank you and am about to turn around and leave. A second, and you smile, and you say, “Have a nice day.” Your warmth pours out with the words, your gentleness. I know what I look like. What I appear to be. You see me as a little girl, an innocent. Sweet, kind, kind of tired. Who knows why I look so tired? So bed-head-ed? And I smile back at you, a little.¬†Embarrassed¬†by your kindness, by what I know you think.

“You too.” Little more than a kid you seem. You might be younger than me, but appearances determine so much. I am hypnotized by you; a kid, so young. So sincere, so genuine in your kindness toward me. Kind, so kind.

As I walk away from you and toward the bread, a melody. And words, powerful words. But repetition doesn’t take away from life. So I guess right now here’s another one. After all, we’ve been on repeat since the beginning of human life.

“It’s been said and done.¬†
Every beautiful thought’s been already sung.”