numb

i haven't written. i failed at the post a day. i forgot one day and then the next day i just didn't care to get back to it. and so four days have gone by. 

perhaps writing a post about honesty on monday was a sign.

i honestly didn't feel like writing.

i honestly don't feel like writing.

the last two days, perhaps because they have been two days when i wasn't busy with work or family or friends or being away...perhaps because they were spent primarily at home with a to do list staring back at me, i've felt pretty numb.

numb and tired.

exhausted.

and completely unable to do much of anything.

is it the election? is it being overwhelmed? it is burn out? is it laziness?

i don't know, but i have been starting at this computer for hours and have nothing to show for it. this doesn't feel good because i don't know the source. about ten minutes ago i almost started crying because of this numbness...this is usually my indication that something else is going on. some emotional, hormonal, something is happening. since wednesday, i've been trying to make small changes: getting back in an exercise routine post-marathon, eating more fruits and veggies and less sugar, etc. i think thats a sign too. my body knows something needs to change.

it could be my usual pre-holiday anxiety and down-in-the-dumps-ness. 

or maybe i am just truly exhausted for some reason.

i don't know.

how can i fix feeling this way if i don't know the source?

as per usual, there is no helpful conclusion on this post. just sharing how i am feeling right now. just writing so i've done something today. just trying to figure it out.

 

honest

i've been thinking about the importance of being honest.

i mean, duh, it is always important to be honest, but it has been hitting me just how often i express myself differently than how i want to/need to.

over the last few days i've been saying things, naming things, sharing things that are a bit harder for me to be honest about. i've been sharing my anger, my fear, my reality a little more readily. 

little things and big things. probably the wrong things, but hopefully some right things. 

i just feel...like i don't want to not be me anymore.

not now.

i don't really know what that means in the scope of things, but those are the words i have right now. i just want to be honest with you. with me.

i want to share what it is like in this body i have so you can see and possibly understand. 

and i want to get comfortable with being uncomfortable because sometimes sharing, being honest, being unapologetically you can ruffle feathers. but, let's be real, my existence on this planet ruffles some feathers so...

here's to being honest about it all.

the morning after

i went to bed last night already knowing. i looked at the picture of my 97 year old grandmother, who yesterday acknowledged that this could be the last election she may be alive for--i promptly told her to stop talking, after she voted. i looked at the picture of my smiling face after i voted.

i had sat and done the math and while no one on the television was willing to admit it and while friends of mine said to keep hope alive, i knew. i climbed into bed, put my phone on silent, and closed my eyes.

oddly enough, i slept better than i have the last few weeks. i think, in part, because there was nothing to be done. i went to bed knowing the outcome of this election process and now i had to come to terms with it.

still at 6am, i stared out the window, refusing to look at my phone. i didn't want to read the words "president-elect". i didn't want to see the text messages from family and friends. i stared for a while and then finally bit the bullet. and there it was. confirmation.

and then i felt them...tears.

i am an emotionally odd person, i feel. in that i can be a champion at crying, but not at the things you'd expect. i've not cried at funerals of family members, but i have cried at particularly sad commercials. and so as much as i knew i felt gutted, i didn't expect the tears to appear. 

and with the tears i realized just how scared i am.

i've been saying i am scared, but before it was in the abstract. it wasn't in front of me. now it is here. the reality is here. as jay smooth (and lots of others) said, hate won last night. sexism won last night. racism won last night. homophobia won last night. white, patriarchal supremacy won last night. i've been well aware of the fact that much of this country could give a damn about me because of my race and gender and now they feel vindicated. now they feel heard. and now who knows what will be said and done all under the image of the american flag. for weeks people told me it couldn't happen and there was always part of me that knew it could. because there were people who felt this lost with obama and while i can't comprehend that, i know they exist. because there are people who truly believe supporting many of the freedoms i find obvious is a dangerous proposition. because they are just as adamant as i am. because history has shown us this. history has shown people's true colors. and we like to think that we are past certain moments in time, we like to think that we are smarter than those before, and we aren't. we are different, but we aren't smarter and we aren't any less selfish and we aren't any less hate filled.

i may not be a body on a plantation, but it does not mean that there are no people in this country that believe i still belong there because i am less than human. and the worst part...some of the people who think that have sat next to me and claimed me as a friend.

i sat up and thought of the things that scare me. personally. the little and the big things that may change over the next four years. the practical things and the emotional things. i thought of my friends and what they are afraid of losing. i thought of how easily my brain had made some switches, already made edits. i thought of how i used to say i wanted kids sooner rather than later and how this pretty much secures me not having a child before i am 35.

i also thought of how i learned about history. world history. and i remember learning about the roman empire and just how large and powerful it was. and i am remember thinking that if something that big and powerful eventually fell then that meant the US would eventually fall too. and i thought of how i've been wondering, with all of this difference and hatred spewing, if this was the beginning of the fall and i woke up today pretty sure that we were at the start of it. 

anyway, i found myself crying. i find myself crying. 

and then of course here i am writing. i have a number of plays i am working on and to be honest only two right now seem important. because they discuss race and gender. because they discuss history. i know we need entertainment. i know we need escape. but right now the idea of continuing with some of my work seems ridiculous. maybe i'll feel better later.

tonight claudia rankine is coming to my class. i am hoping she will give me some guidance on how to use writing to combat the things i am scared of, the people who i am scared of. i will read citizen again today and breathe.

my boyfriend wrapped his arms around me this morning and i leaned back and i almost cried again and then we talked about how we are going to have to get to work--doing work we were already doing, adding work we didn't think we'd have to do. 

and so we will. it starts today guys. the work starts now. 

we wait

i didn't want to write anything until i knew the outcome of the election. 

but it is close. we are waiting. we are scared.

tonight, while sipping wine and trying to breathe, i looked over the exit polls.

and it is fascinating.

not really surprising, but fascinating. 

we are a divided country. 

and we are divided by race like whoa.

gender too. a bit.

we have opposing views of where we are as a country. in 2008 and 2012, i voted for change. i voted for obama. today, in the exit poll, those who wanted change the most voted for trump. 

i don't know where we'll be in an hour or two. or tomorrow morning. 

i do know that the feeling as much as i can't believe we are here, i am not surprised. and those exit polls, they show why i am not surprised. because we are multiple countries in one. because we see things differently. we define great in different ways. 

and i think they also show how what people say and do in public is different than what they do in private. 

and in private, people do some crazy shit.

#imwithher until the end. 

today and tomorrow

i am sore today.

i was feeling cocky about my walking ability until i had to use some stairs.

what they say about stairs post-marathon is true. it hurts. walking down the subway steps is its own kind of hell. just fyi.

i had to run for the bus today though and i totally could and i find that weird.

to be honest i find it weird that my body hasn't, like, thrown in the towel.

i also find it weird that life doesn't just stop because you ran a marathon. like what is this thing called work? and more importantly what is this thing called...

tomorrow is election day. 

i haven't written that much about the election because, well, i think there are people who say things better than i can. 

i have said that i am with hillary clinton.

have i mentioned how scared i am of clinton not winning?

probably not. because it scares me. 

but election day is happening tomorrow. thank the heavens. and hopefully my fears are unfounded.

honestly i am in complete denial that the election could go the other way. i honestly can't fathom it. i can't imagine it. it is terrifying as a young black woman to think about what that would mean for me and those i love and care about.

it has been terrifying to read and hear the vitriol that has been uncovered during this election. truth be told that won't go away tomorrow and that is sad and scary too. and truth be told it has always been there. just hidden. just under wraps.

that is scary to me. it is scary to me that there are people in this country that just hate me due to the color of my skin or my gender. but i also guess that has always been true.

doesn't make it any less scary though...

today i asked my boyfriend if he'd like to be my hot date to the polling station tomorrow. he said yes (so basically i am winning). when i step into the booth tomorrow, i am casting my vote for a candidate who i believe will support me and those i love. she isn't perfect, but neither am i. none of us are. and i will be proud to refer to her as madam president. 

but until that happens in a few hours, i am going to put my legs up and work on this soreness so i am not hobbling into the polling station.  

wanting - an unfinished list

i've been wanting to paint lately. like get some canvas and pull out some paints and get dirty while trying to capture something words cannot.

i've also been wanting to write a novel lately. 

and write poems.

basically anything but a play. (avoidance much?)

and i've wanted to read book of poems after book of poems.

and to take photos that capture the beauty in my every day.

i've been wanting to reconnect to yoga and meditation, things that have dwindled in my life this past year.

and i've been wanting to stop eating as much dairy and carbs as i have these last few months.

i've been wanting to sit among the trees and just stare and listen.

i've been wanting to lay in bed longer.

i've been wanting to hide in museums.

and i've been wanting to avoid familiar haunts.

i've been wanting to go on a road trip.

i've been wanting to listen more than i talk.

i've been wanting to end each night with a glass of wine.

i've been wanting to have less coffee.

i've been wanting to wear all black.

i've been wanting to take naps.

and crossword puzzles. i've wanted to do those.

and to run without music.

lately i've had the urge to go out dancing and to have a little too much to drink.

and to make lists on paper so i can have the satisfaction of crossing items off. 

and to buy books i don't have time to read.

and to both obsess about the election and yet not talk about it.

to daydream.

i've been wanting to stay in the moment.

lately i've really just wanted chocolate chip cookies.

 

 

 

in the quiet

it is late. not really late, but late for me now. and i am sitting in the dark in my living room. i can just make out the books in the bookcase due to the streetlights outside. and the dog just came in and sat near me. and i can hear my boyfriend shift in bed in the other room. and i sit in the dark in the living room with a headache and the sound of a bus pulling into the bus stop downstairs. and then there is the sound of my fingers typing away. and it is late and i am in the dark and i feel like i shouldn't have had a bite of a marshmallow an hour ago because now i feel a bit sick to my stomach. but the dark can help with that. it does. 

and i have too much i should be doing. too much that got lost today. and tomorrow there is another to do list and my head hurts and the dog makes little dog snores and i enjoy sitting in the dark in the living room with only the sounds of the world around me and my own voice in my own mind and not out in the world too.

i feel like i've been talking a lot lately. in general. to lots of people. and i want to be quiet. i know i partially want to be quiet because i am scared of what happens when i open my mouth. i am scared sometimes to encounter the person who comes out and the person who is left to deal with the one who comes out.

the dog growls as he hears a dog bark outside. he sits up and stares out the window.

sometimes i want to stay in this quiet moment, in this living room in the dark, with those i care for nearby and i don't want to have to say anything or be anyone but a person thinking to herself. i want to just worry and complain and fight and cry and laugh and feel numb all in this dark space, all in the quiet of the evening, all in my head. 

the boyfriend shifts in the other room and the dog has gotten upset by another sound and i am moments from gathering them up and exhaling because with them in the dark in this apartment i can just be quiet and be me--

and yet let me linger in this moment, let me linger with just me a bit longer, let me stay in this quiet in this darkness in this place for just a moment longer--

before i close my eyes and get ready for the light for the outside for a day of words again, let me breathe the words out here in the dark by myself

in the quiet.

 

marathon anxiety (and happy nablopomo)

it is november again. 

and i'm, yet again, signing on to write one blog post a day for National Blog Posting Month aka NaBloPoMo (since I don't have time for NaNoWriMo).

enjoy the rantings of this crazy loon aka me. 

--

me. eating a levain cookie after a run this summer. 

me. eating a levain cookie after a run this summer. 

on sunday i run a marathon. if you know me, you know this because i've been talking about running a marathon for a year now. you probably are so sick of me talking about long runs and races and foot pain and hunger that you've been counting down the days until i cross that finish line. to be fair, i'm sick of me too. i'm sick of complaining about running. i'm sick of finding my runs boring and hard. i'm sick of being hungry all the time and then eating crap and then gaining weight despite all the exercise i do. i'm sick of chafing and smelling bad and not sleeping in and worrying about stress fractures. 

running and i are going through a bit of a rough patch as you can see.

this week, i've also been sick of the nervous knots that are in my belly. 

you guys, i'm scared shitless. really. i am. i know people run marathons all the time. i know many of you reading run them all the time. and thats great. but you all are super human and i am just regular human and i can't really fathom how this regular human is going to run all that way and wishing my pace were more like oprah's and not just collapse at mile 17. (pause. i was looking for oprah's marathon time and i came across this crappy article which insults celebrity marathon times...this is shit and this is why people don't run because people are jerks. fuck you, complex for this article. the average marathon finishing time for a woman in 2014 was 4:44:19. marathon running isn't just for those sub 3hr superhumans. i may never run a marathon as fast as oprah (who was faster than the average, just FYI) and that's okay and its not bad and shut up.)

i don't want to collapse. that is scary.

i'm scared of collapsing. 

i'm also scared of not collapsing because that means i'm still running.

it is all very complicated right now.

i'm at the point that seeing signage for the marathon or looking at the marathon course map makes me nauseous. my mom asked if i was at the convention center this morning picking up my bib and i snapped at her because 1) i can't do that until thursday and 2) how dare she bring up the marathon before noon? 

i have issues.

but in all seriousness, i'm scared. i'm legitimately scared about finishing. yes i ran 20mi two weeks ago, but it was hard. and i was slow. and i wanted to cry from mile 15 on. at mile 15 i'll just be getting to manhattan with 11mi to go. who designed this craziness? who said this was a good idea? 

WHAT AM I EVEN GOING TO WEAR ON RACE DAY BECAUSE I'VE FORGOTTEN HOW TO DO EVERYTHING?

i should be distracting myself with the ridiculous amount of work and life i have going on, but somehow i still find myself staring at course maps and eating homemade chocolate chip cookies (baking is another great form of procrastination) and not doing the work i need to do. which means that after i run a marathon on sunday i'll have to come home and do all the work i didn't do and which is due the next day. and because i'm not fast i won't be home until late afternoon and i'll just want food and my couch and i'm already crafting my emails to professors and collaborators apologizing for the lack of plays in their inboxes.

cue more anxiety.

in other words, i'm an anxious mess. these are the days i want to hide under the covers. i honestly think i'd run away if it weren't for the fact that i've told all y'all that i'm running this thing and that all the work i have to do isn't done in a vacuum so others are depending on me. 

remind me to cultivate my introvertedness more. if i were true to my introvertedness, i wouldn't be in this mess.

so i am counting down the days until november sixth not only because it will be a crazy amazing and emotional day but mostly because it means i can do other things again. like not be as anxious. that sounds wonderful.

but also a teeny tiny part of me imagines the end of the race. it imagines me finishing the thing and smiling and crying and proving the part of myself who thinks i can't do anything, wrong. so i'm also counting down the days until she feels glory. like real glory. like not dependent on someone else, something else (except maybe the weather and the great water stop volunteers...def dependent on them), not dependent on the right person reading my work at the right time, not dependent on looking a certain way, not dependent on using the right words...

just me, my breath, my legs, and my brain. 

now excuse me while i get another cookie and freak out some more and finally do the work i set out to do at 9am. or not. maybe i'll just eat the cookie while "doing work" and watching elementary before class. anything is possible. don't judge.

 

p.s. i was interviewed over on lady parts. you should read it. i don't mention running.