Bitter Sweet

Oh, god, now I have that “Can’t change, I can’t change, I can’t change” in my head. I’m having a very lovely visit with my cousin A. and her husband and daughter. Her daughter is two and a half and just smart as poop. Hilarious. I mean, I’m glad she’s not my kid, because my kid would, if she said “damn it” as cute as N. does, would not be stopped. She’d be cussing like a two-and-a-half year old sailor.

Her visit so far has involved finding every stuffed animal in the house and putting it either to bed or in time out. Grover, it seems, cannot help but hit people in the head. I was asked to “talk to him.” About all the hitting of people in the head–Kermit and the Grinch.

But the best part is when she sat on the couch with me and told me all about her dogs, Charlie and Lola. Charlie has a “twinkly eye” but Lola does not. Turns out poor Charlie has a cataract. But I love that she came up with the notion that it was “twinkly.” It’s going to be odd if she maintains her current bodytype, because she’s really tall and slender for a two-and-a-half year old. We Phillipses don’t produce a lot of tall and slender people usually, but, eh, every once in a while. And neither her mom or dad are that tall. but she’s about as tall as a five-year-old.

The thing is that, I had a wonderful evening last night. But this morning, while they’re still asleep, I about want to cry. Is this what I’m missing out on? Having these people closer? Having a kid who runs around saying “damn it” when she gets frustrated?

But how could I have lived my life any differently? I mean, it’s not like I deliberately chose this life, but when I saw it coming, I didn’t run from it, either, and I’ve run from other things.

The Corporate Shill had a baby last night. I didn’t even know she was pregnant.

I just let go and let go and let go. Take my hand and feel it already slipping out of your grasp. And for what? I don’t know.

The Rejectionist has a post about this today, too.

Is this what you do to be an artist? And, if so, then why do I suck at it?

Oh, lord. I don’t suck at it, I know. I just don’t know something and I’m not even sure what that something is.

Oh, family. They’re just like excavators for all kinds of emotional crap.


3 thoughts on “Bitter Sweet

  1. Oh, god, this is such a giant pool of suck to be in. It’s hard if you have one and hard if you don’t, and inevitable to want the choice you didn’t make, even if the wanting only lasts a few minutes. Upside of what you have now–rich friend/social/family connections, times to yourself, more in general of your life is yours, less is forced down your throat because you don’t have most of your bandwidth taken up by someone else’s needs. And yes, all of that helps your art. And no, you DON’T suck.

  2. It’s sort of what was said in the post about art and publishing and music, too. It’s sometimes just luck whether we end up with one life or another, and what could we really do about it anyway but play the hand we’ve been dealt? Still, I hear you.

  3. B, when I first met you you didn’t write much, except for this blog. Then you wrote a play, and then you wrote some scary stories, and then and then … and now, you write. That’s what you do. You don’t say, “oh, I have some free time, let me throw a party.” You say, “oh, I have some free time, I have this story I want to write, or this plot I want to work out, or this text exercise I want to tackle, or whatever.” You are a writer: a person who writes, and thinks about writing, and would rather write than do several other things, and writes, and is paid for it and published.

    That doesn’t preclude your doing other things, or your wanting other things. But, knowing you, I’m pretty well convinced that when you want them enough you’ll get them or do them, the same way you have done with your prose. I’m not at all convinced that this is an either/or situation. You can have family, and children, and all that, and continue to be a writer. Right now, I think, you are putting all your mental energy into the one thing. That doesn’t mean it’s all you’ll ever put your mental energy into, but right now it seems to be your big deal. And what’s wrong with that?

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