My body has been been doing this thing where every once in a while, five minutes or whatever, I get this feeling like my heart skipped a beat, or I stuck an extra beat in. As if I've gone over a hill very quickly, and parts of my chest are actually back behind me somewhere. Or like I forgot to breathe and my body is forcefully reminding me to fucking do it already. It doesn't hurt, but wow is it weird. I have no idea what this sensation is.

I told Ann about it, and she asked if I've been feeling stressed out lately. And I said no, because whatever stress I'm feeling right now doesn't even come close to the stress I was feeling in 2009, or in 2013 when everyone fucking died. Subjectively, I'm in the sweet spot of knowing where my next meal is coming from, knowing where I'm going to sleep tonight (or tomorrow, or the day after that), and feeling supported and loved.

But then my heart skips a beat, or whatever the fuck that thing is, and I wonder if I'm telling myself the truth.


I do worry that we're all getting old, and our relationships are getting old, and pretty soon we're all going to be little piles of dust and memories and maybe someone will see the value in that when we get there. But the idea of that is just some defensive bullshit. It's so easy for me to be a nihilist sometimes. Just slip into the groove and let it sweep me along on the track. Boring. Boring and dumb.

I spent a good chunk of my life being boring and dumb, and I'd rather not do that anymore. And usually I don't. Usually I'm out there in community, talking to people and sharing stories and really making deep, significant connections with people. I'm really reached a point in my life where I am good at being me, and being the most genuine person I can be. Even with my family now. Even with strangers.

It took a ton of work, but I think I can really see myself now. I am kind of funny and really introspective and sometimes I miss the logical line of things. I'm empathetic and I don't have a lot of filters, and I will run toward intimacy with people even when it isn't the greatest idea. I'm emotionally intense, sometimes more intense than I really want to be, but it turns out that's a good filter for finding out who my people are. I'm pretty smart, and I can do some really amazing things when I'm engaged and putting my energy into it. I'm supportive as hell for those that are my friends. I've got some anxiety issues that prevent me from reaching out to people sometimes, and that's something I've got to work on. I see value in here, and I see flaws in here, and it's all me and here I am.

That's really scary. Because now when I'm boring and dumb and being bullshit I can totally see it. I can see what I'm doing and totally call myself out on it in real time. I'm me in here all the time now, and there's nowhere that light doesn't shine.

So for the last few days, when it's felt like my heart is jumping around in my chest, I kind of get where it's coming from.


I had the house to myself tonight, and it eventually devolved into crocheting and looking at the picture slideshow screensaver on the computer once it finally timed out. Sudden flashbacks flip by for an hour, and I call them out as if I'm working to remind myself of my past. Hawaii in 2005. The house in Pacific City in 2009. My brother's kids as babies. An abandoned house in Glen Elder in 2008. The 416 porch in 1998. Me in front of the Hodag in 2012. Dead lovers. Montreal in 2010. My thirtieth birthday party. The last school photo of my sister in 1976. The Bennington Monument. A wedding in 2003. Dover Castle in 2001. The end of the Mississippi River from last May. My grandfather in 1996.

It might not be the healthiest thing I could do. People watch movies or listen to podcasts or something. Instead engaging myself in something new, I'm crawling further into my own head, with the assistance of 21st century technology.

But there was something in there that I really needed tonight. I needed to be grounded in myself for just a moment, because it doesn't feel like there's a lot of stable ground right now. Like things might tumble over if I'm not careful, if I'm not smarter, if I'm not more on top of my shit. At least I know where I've been. Even when it was shitty and weird, I know what that was and I know where I was, and there is comfort in the remembering.

Things might creak and shudder. But at least I know I can hide in the basement.

Yeah, maybe this is stress. Maybe I need to keep an eye on that.

Last night I watched the first game of the World Series. The Royals won which was not a huge shock, the game went into extra innings, but I went home before it ended since I was tired of the bartender and the guy she was talking to at the end of the bar. Yesterday I found out that my car needs $1100 worth of parts, the good news is one of the guys I talked to who diagnosed the problem is willing to install my new hub assemblies, the bad news is that drained a lot of my savings and I don't know how much labor will end up costing me.

The guy I've been talking to called me last night. Postseason baseball only happens once a year so I use that as justification to stay up later than I normally would, but I had no intention of staying up until almost eight in the morning. We had such a good conversation last night. At one point he was pretending that he was unfamiliar with the wildlife in Wisconsin. He was asking me about the moose and caribou population and told me he wouldn't be surprised if he came home one day and found a trophy moose head sitting out on his porch. I was laughing pretty hard at some of the things he said. He likes to pick on me and I like to give it right back to him by making fun of where he lives.

At the parts store I found out that they need a delivery driver. I went online to apply for a job and saw some more opportunities so now I have to think about whether I want a part time job that would be relatively easy, or a full time one that would be a lot more challenging, but also more stimulating and would pay better. I need to put a resume together, such a loathesome task and worse without a computer, but I'll manage. Full time work would mean benefits and there's a practical aspect to that. Delivery driver is the safe option, there's always the possibility I could start at the bottom and work my way up the chain of command, but there's the risk that other positions may not be available later.

I put a layer of leaves on my garden yesterday. It rained last night which was good for the grass, my raspberries, and will help tamp that mulching material down and help it decompose more rapidly. When we were talking I told him about my purple hoe and turquoise shovel that I bought in the kid department of a local hardware store when we first moved out and I wanted a garden. For some reason we were talking about shooting snakes, I told him the story of my dad beheading a snake with a shovel, he called me a violent shovel fashionista, and I laughed so hard I thought I was going to start crying. It's really weird to have someone I can talk so easily to, it was late when he called, but all of sudden I looked at the clock and it was five in the morning.

He was writing an article about a Korean War veteran who has liver and colon cancer. I turned my email notifications off so I didn't see what he sent until half an hour had gone by. He wasn't happy with the ending so I read what he had and suggested rephrasing the final sentences and quote. I had heard about the interivew earlier, it was really neat to be able to see what he put together for this guy whose end of life seems near. He wanted the veteran to like what he had written, that led to a conversation on writing which turned into a conversation on Rita Hayworth, Fred Astaire, and old clothes and music from the 1940s that I enjoyed. I heard more about his family after I asked. He's a detail person who doesn't volunteer a lot about his own life. We have two sisters with the same names spelled differently which I thought was interesting, he told me my family doesn't know how to spell so I shot a lame retort back, it was just fun to lay on the couch and chat like a teenager again. 

I'd love to keep writing, but I have some work to do and I'm at the library again so this is goodbye until we meet again, whenever that may be...



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