Tuesday, February 10, 2009


I finally accepted my life, and I thought you should know.

Driving up the coast, ocean on my left, cliffs on my right, the song on the radio telling me to forget. There were no bonfires tonight. Too cold, I suppose. Usually the beach is lit up with them, meteors plunged to earth. Star fall.

I follow the curve to a local, usually empty restaurant, and pick a table in the corner where I will remain undisturbed, except for the constant chatter of the television in the opposite corner. A dog show, of all things.

The waitress asks me what I would like to drink, and if I am expecting others.

No, I tell her, just me.

Before I even look at the menu, she asks me if I know what I want already.

Apparently she gets a lot of us, solitary diners, solitary people. And, yes, I already know what I want, without looking at the menu.

She knows too well this MO.

She leaves. I open my book. I read.

My drink arrives. I read.

And the song on the radio, now playing in my head, tells me to forget.

Forget what?

Forget that I am this solitary being? Forget the clamor of people, asking for help, asking for advice, validation, attention? Forget that I have never found a single social group that I could fit into, that those who I do not immediately connect with are either intimidated by me or find me aloof and detached? Forget the words of an ex, who, when we broke up, told me I was too intense, too overwhelming? That I would eat his life? Forget the people that look on me like some sort of trophy? Or the things I did to myself so such things would not bother me? Forget how many meals I have eaten alone, how many movie theaters I have sat in by myself, and the constant knowledge that this is my life? Forget how many miles upon miles of sidewalk and asphalt I have walked alone in exploration of the world and of the self?

So many evenings ending with me and a keyboard, fingers flowing, fingers dancing, exorcising my demons. Translating feelings into words.

I shed my skin.

People have expectations of me to always be strong. People think that I can take it all. What did he say to me? That he thought it would be okay to damage me for his own self-interest because he thought I was strong enough to take it? People are always so shocked when I become weak, even temporarily. It's like this idol has fallen, has turned human.

And then they reach to me. Reach for me. As if I could heal their damages, just because I have seen so many like them that I can predict their behavior because I've seen it before. That somehow my attentions will fix and validate them. That me choosing them means they're special in some way.

Sometimes men pour their hearts out to me in such a way... and I can do nothing. There's no connect. There's no words for them. And then others believe acting in a certain way will attract my attention, like I'm some typical girl who will fall for their games that I've seen a dozen times over and used against them.

When I slam them against the wall with words, they lash out in anger.

But they never get in my shell.

Their expectations, their memories, their hopes. I can walk into a room and know that those who ask who I am will hear a dozen different sordid stories of the things I have done, and some listeners will connect old tales with me. So that's the girl.

I walk inside myself. I walk detached from the world. I monitor each step, each sway, where my clothes cling, where my hands rest. I do not think about this any longer, I just do it naturally. They call me predatory. They say I'm one of the most predatory girls they've ever met, a shark gliding through waters. Silent and controlled. Never angry. And while constantly open, never connected.

I'm good at it.

They scoff when I tell them I think I'll be single forever. The constant stream of flesh through my life attests otherwise, as if any of those men could be the one in my head. As if any of them could have that strength and understanding, that they wouldn't be overwhelmed.

I accepted it, maybe not today, but it has been... acknowledged. I've nodded at my future, told it I would see it soon.

Alone but not lonely.

I thought you should know.

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