This weekend Dea and I will be at the Jazz & Wine Festival in Glenn Dale, MD.
ELO starts singing “Living Thing” and they get to the part about, “… yoooOOO-OO-OOu, and your sweet desiii-III-iiire …” and it made me think of him. I sent a quick love note:
“yooOOOooOOu and your sweet desiiiiIIIIiiire” always makes me think of you thinking of me
you make me feel like my desire is something beautiful
I can’t count how many times I have been shamed for my desire. Worse crime–I have a body that society doesn’t deem worthy of desire (from either side of the equation).
I was what my parents called a “willful child” and I tend to eventually question the stones I carry, and sometimes throw them right back. Other times I just carry that shit around without even understanding why. Why does it matter if somebody else thinks my desire is too much of a tsunami of want and emotion? I think it all boils down to that thing I always say: we all want to feel like we matter. Or at least not want to feel like what we’re doing is bad or wrong somehow.
It feels really good to hear a fun little pop song and find meaning in it. Though we shouldn’t let others determine our worth, it sure is validating to remember my desire is worth something to somebody. To know that somebody thinks it’s beautiful and I am worthy of it.
I once wrote a poem about myself as a river. It was convincing, I think. And I felt it. Powerfully.
Maybe it’s smaller, like a brook. A small meandering gentle flowing place to dip my toes and wash my blues away.
Smooth river stones. Winking diamond reflections as the water moseys by.
I feel small. I feel herded, funneled, mined by corporations who only know me by what I buy, watch, listen to.
I just want to float. I want to feel free enough to catch the rays as I float on by all of the glut and greed. I only need enough. Enough love. Enough money. Enough creativity. Just … enough to sustain my spirit and body. Enough to help the people who need it.
I need rest. I haven’t had rest in months. I haven’t had a vacation of any kind in years. I need rest before my spirit gives up. Before my body gives out.
I also need to find out where I dropped my faith and hope. They are stones in the brook, somewhere. I’ll keep looking, before it’s too late.
I told my therapist about my inward energy. “I’m in a downward cycle,” I said. “That’s what I call it.” She already knew. I’m normally big and outwards. I was more pensive, and my responses measured.
“Not like when I was younger. Not downward like that.” Or something like that. And what I mean is, I don’t rock in a dark bathroom hurting myself anymore, like I did when I was in my twenties and didn’t understand what all of these …. feelings? … were.
I dragged my partner along because I felt overwhelmed by how much had happened since I’d last seen her. It had maybe been two months. I didn’t want to waste my 50 minutes rattling on, thoughts flitting like butterflies, and zagging like drunken fruit flies. I wanted purpose.
I updated in sputters, looking to him to organize the thoughts in straight lines. We told her I’ve been grumpy. Mostly at Will, who called me out on it.
We told her about my latest adventure.
“She wanders a little bit. Never too far, though. But yeah, she does.”
“What do you think of that,” the therapist asks.
“I don’t worry,” he says.
Then we went and saw the fireflies in the treetops afterwards. It was hard to tell where the bioluminescence ended and the stars began. We stood there, craning our necks, arms looped around each other. Then kisses. Deep, loving, with that edge of desire creeping in.
We went to the car the other day. It was sunny and the clouds were the big puffy variety, but moving faster than that sort usually does. “It’s so beautiful out. Wow, just so beautiful.” And it was – balmy and bright. The kind of day you might draw with crayons. I said that it was the sort of day you lay on the grass together and look up and shout out cloud creatures. He agreed. He opened the car door for me and before I got in I said, “We’re going to die some day. And everybody we know, too.” And he just said, “Yup,” or something like that, and maybe kissed my forehead and I got in.
These sorts of things creep into my stories. The highs and lows of being inside of myself. The fears of an anxious brain and the darkness of a depressed one. Instead of letting it hurt me the way it used to, I use it. I use it to write. I use it to make art. Anybody who has ever been through these things, these painful beauties of feeling so much, and these lows that make your bed hold you in its maw, prisoner–they will recognize it. Anybody in a long-term relationship, they’ll recognize some of it.
I had some petty shit happen to me yesterday. And actually, some other petty shit happen to me last week. And I look at these petty things and think of all of the petty things I could have done, but never did, and wonder why some people can’t resist the urge. So, instead of trying to understand them, I just flip that shit. For every petty thing somebody does to me, I turn around and do something nice for somebody–usually something subtle, or even anonymous–so the yin and the yang are all in balance.
Right now I am drinking some sake warmed by my husband on the stove, in a cup my friend Gina made. I’m thinking of what graphic I am going to put with this blog entry. A photo of the cup? A doodle? I guess I’ll find out just before you do.
How about that. The sake and a doodle. ❤
I think we all owe a debt of gratitude to Beyonce and Jay-Z for opening up their personal marital struggles to the world. So often we look at celebrities and we only see the money and the beauty without the struggles the rest of us seem to face. They are breaking down those barriers by talking about stuff that is, well frankly, freaking embarrassing as hell. Being cheated on. Breaking vows. Giving in to baser desires and hurting your loved ones. This is deep stuff we are all looking at here with the release of Jay-Z’s 4:44.
If this successful couple can come out and be vulnerable when they have so many reasons they don’t have to, you have to respect that, and try to learn from it.
I’m not big into celebrity talk and all of that. I don’t think I’ve posted more than a few celebrity centered blogs in the 15 years I’ve been blogging. But this particular situation brings up something that I am always blogging about and forever fascinated with: the psychology of love, desire, and promises.
From my perspective – based on my own life experiences, and writing about love for a while, I feel like a few things are happening here when it comes to the psychology of love:
1 – When Beyonce used her art to talk about Jay-Z cheating she took back some of her power she probably felt she lost when she found out he cheated. And it was something to behold.
2 – Women are going to lash out at Jay-Z, not only because he hurt their beloved Beyonce, but it’s also scary, personally. It’s unnerving because here we are, just your average citizens, and there is this paragon of Goddessy art and beauty – and she got cheated on. It makes it feel like it’s not possible to avoid being cheated on if there are any cracks at all in the trust of a relationship.
3 – Women who cheated with Jay-Z are possibly the sort who get a power surge from it. Imagine if the man who belongs to, sleeps with, and has children with, a woman who is considered one of the most beautiful, talented, and powerful women in popular culture–chooses to risk his vows and his family because he’s so attracted to you–that’s heady stuff! Aside from Jay-Z being a powerful and rich man himself, but to feel like you out-did Beyonce in some way–that could be part of rush of doing that.
4 – In offering up his confessions and apologies in such a public way, it’s giving a little power back to Beyonce in the form of support and validation. But it’s also setting an example for men who might be in a place where they are trying to decide what’s right and wrong in relationships where things are promised. If this is the nudge they need to stay on the side of the line that honors their relationship and their partner, then I think Jay-Z has done a great service to many couples out there by laying his sins bare.
And as is stated in “Red Archer” – promises don’t really mean anything when they’re easy to keep. Promises only mean something when they are hard to keep.
A reading and discussion with authors Dea Schofield and H.L. Brooks.
At Scarborough Fair Bed and Breakfast in Baltimore!
Saturday, July 22nd
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I will hold you, quietly. I can be still long enough to listen to your pain. I’m not good at being still. You know this. You know. I think that’s why my embracing still moments mean so much to you … because you know.
I had an epiphany about myself yesterday. A realization. And it was such a simple answer, I was certain I must have realized it some time in the past. I thought about the times I’d been embraced by somebody, only for them to get close long enough to see my utter humaneness, and then walk away. I thought this meant I was bad at love. Now I realize it’s more about the ideal of me not matching up with the reality of me. And you never did that to me. You always understood. It’s amazing to be truly seen that way.
The essence of it all? You understand why the things that matter to me–matter to me. You also understand that I am an embodiment of celebration. Even my quietness can be a spectacle. I think that comes off like obsession, or possessiveness, to some people. And in all truth, I was possessive in my first marriage. I was jealous in that life I once led. I was a teenager when we met. And that was a difficult twenty years. I grew in that time, particularly starting around my early thirties. I know the difference between excitement and jealousy, between celebration and possession. I know it for myself, even if others don’t. And you know, maybe that’s why I can appreciate the abundant trust I am now the recipient of, because I know how rare it is.
I’m trying to get over that fear of being misunderstood. You really help with that, did you know? Because even though I’ve read that Anaïs Nin quote a million times, it really sunk in yesterday. It isn’t that my love is wrong, it’s that my love is viewed through the filter of others. It’s about the way they experience my love that makes it work, or not work. Its about their past relationships and what they learned.
Maybe at some point I can stop writing and vlogging about being afraid to be misunderstood, and that will be the measure of when I am cured of that concern.
Finally diving in again. As mentioned in the video, I tried vlogging years ago, but it was too much of a pain. As it is, I still need to learn how to do some editing to make them a little more exciting.
This vlog is a little longish, but I think it moves along at a pretty good clip. In the future I will have topic-driven vlogs. I think I’ll also read some sexy story bits. Trying to just be more myself these days. Not so guarded. Taking a fresh direction, or at least getting back on the right path. We all need a reset sometimes. At times they come in interesting forms. Mine came in the form of some restlessness and desire that needs to be expressed. I have to forget about the politics of the world in order to be so self-indulgent as to post about being misunderstood and finding my voice, and all that. It’s so small in comparison.
You take my hand and we spin in close. Your arms around me, your breath on my neck. A few heartbeats, chests rise and fall … heat … then you spin away.