Here’s something y’all don’t know about me, really, because I don’t think about it that often. I cannot stand to have my shoulders rubbed too hard. Or hard at all. It makes me want to throw up.
When I was in college, some well-meaning person was convinced that I “carried all my stress” in my shoulders and she would sit behind me and start, very lightly, rubbing them. This felt like Heaven. But then, as she got a feel for the lay of the muscles under the skin and where she felt like they were knotted beyond most relief, she’d start to rub harder, one thumb and then the other along the grain of my shoulder blade while her fingers held tight to the tops of my shoulders to keep me from running away.
And I would feel, along with excruciating pain, this release of something that almost had a smell. I don’t mean that literally, it’s just that whatever happens in those muscles when they’re rubbed too hard, releases something that my brain doesn’t quite know how to process. It feels like a chemical spill inside me. My shoulders get all hot and then the heat starts to slide down my back and then there’s just this feeling of nausea, I guess like there should be a terrible smell, but isn’t.
So, yeah, I would guess that I do carry a lot of “stress” in my shoulders, but that being the case, I’d rather we not work on releasing it all in a big flood of toxic blah, but instead maybe just rub gently, peeling away layers at a time.
The recalcitrant brother doesn’t believe in evolution or in man-made global warming or in living on a lot of land that you don’t hunt. He was tickled by the idea of going back to his boss and telling him about the crazy weekend he spent with the “real” liberals. The recalcitrant brother is considered a liberal in his neck of the woods because he didn’t vote for Bush.
I’m not sure he voted at all.
I was also thinking about the blogger meet-up on Thursday, which, I have to say, was weird for me. I’ll just say that up front. It was weird. And here’s why. Because I used to be the type of person would didn’t go to those things because there’d be one other person or a couple of other people there who I wanted to talk to, if that, and otherwise, it’d just be a bunch of strangers. And yet, I walked into this one and I was all like, “Well, thank god, there’s Kat Coble.” and then a second later, “Well, thank god, there’s Jag” or Ivy or Ginger or Kleinheider (speaking of which, if this is not proof of Wage’s talent, I don’t know what is. Look how beautiful he manages to make them both look.) or Smiley or whoever.
I looked around the room and saw a bunch of people I just adore and a bunch of groups of people I wouldn’t mind spending the whole evening talking to.
I don’t know. It’s weird.
I didn’t tell y’all but I saw a shrink on Wednesday. It was the most unbearable thing I’ve ever been through, including having my shoulders rubbed by well-meaning, but too strong people.
As shrinks do, she wanted to know about my childhood and my transition into college. So, we were talking about growing up in a fish bowl, feeling like I was the church’s pet, and the relief it was to go to college and be unknown, what a luxury it was to not be known.
And I do still feel like that’s a luxury–to have no one know who you are. But it’s a luxury that becomes binding and I think I’d let myself be bound by it for a long time. You see what I’m saying? That I’d gone so long with being known in ways I couldn’t control that I went to the other extreme and tried to keep myself in some controlled state of anonymity.
And now, maybe, I’m striking some kind of balance, to be known and liked on my own terms, for who I am.
It makes me wonder if I can do that for my brothers. I hope so.
Anyway, this is wandering all over the place, but the shrink thought, after listening to me for an hour, that I don’t need her services, but maybe the services of a sleep specialist. Still, my point is that opening myself up like that was really, really difficult. I felt very exposed and, again, like my life was up for scrutiny and that any abnormalities would be weighed against me.
But I guess not.
I hate those times when you can feel time slipping away from you. That’s really how I felt all week, that no matter how much we did this stuff, I would never be here with these folks in this way often enough.
That, my friends, is why I get drunk and want to fuck you. Not because you’re gorgeous, with your lively smiles and your dancing laughs, and not because I’m in love with you and want to break up all your relationships and force you to devote all your energy into worshipping me, but because these moments seem so fleeting and I want to carry you with me after this all passes.
It’s fleeting, time. It’s a cliché, but it’s a cliché because it’s true. And there will come a time when we don’t have this any more and I just can’t help but long for something to remember you by.
Ha, you know, maybe that would have been a more productive hour with the shrink–instead of talking about my childhood, we could have talked about how being happy makes me sad.