The funny thing about healing is that you never quite know when you are done. And I guess, you could say, you never know the precise moment when the whole healing process begins. I’ve been on this kind of insane emotional roller coaster for the past few weeks and I’ve had a difficult time pinning down the exact reason. Pre-menstrual? No, no amount of bodily preparation for a monthly friend could make me cry like I did in Hugo, hugging Mr. Man and sobbing, “I miss my grandparents.” Pregnant? No, not that either. Though many people have suggested it’s a possibility, I know that preggo is a no. Sad? No, not really. Actually, pretty happy. A little bit excited even.
Maybe be some unresolved emotional issues around rape? The two friends that died in the past two years? All the shit that has changed so dramatically and the culmination of my twenties, here in this twenty-ninth year?
Oh yes, that’s right, I’m creating a website about healing trauma. Maybe there are some things I haven’t dealt with? (insert lame canned laughter at the obviousness of this revelation)
**side bar: We are moving in a week and a half, partially to have an outdoor space for Saucerton Dogsworth and partially to get away from the crazy you-know-what next door. She is currently stomping up and down her hallway like a madwoman, which is what she does when she believes we are walking too loudly, and I am currently fighting the urge to put on high heels and do bunny hops up and down the hallway for the next thirty minutes, which is why I decided maybe it’s time to sit down and do a little bit of writing. Back to my singleness of purpose.
I was in my Fem Eth class yesterday, and we were asked to share a piece of artwork about our project (my project being the new website), a poem we wrote, and then give a general update on how doing art can open up the project in a new way. I did my art walk, sharing a collage I’d made with unique beds and people’s stories, illustrating that the place of safety is different for everyone, and once we open up and share we can begin to feel safe once again. I read my poem –
When you called
You were only
It doesn’t count
If I can’t
And as I finished the poem, I felt the stickiness in my throat, the heaviness of my tongue, the threatening wetness behind my eyes. I thought, Fuck I’m going to start crying, I don’t want to fucking cry in front of thirty chicks in class. I updated the group, very quickly, in that high pitched I’m-totally-going-to-start-crying-at-any-moment voice, and then I sat down. I pressed my tongue to the roof of my mouth (a makeup artist trick that allegedly keeps tears at bay), and looked at the ceiling. A few salty alligator chunks rolled down my cheeks and I swiped them away, not wanting anybody to see. It’s one thing to cry at a meeting, or some other place, but class? I felt like there is just no way in the world that would do.
The next girl got up and did her art walk. As soon as she opened her mouth, tears began to fall from her eyes. The most courageous person I’ve ever seen, she stood in the middle of that giant circle of thirty desks, and cried as she spoke of her project, and watching her, I began to cry as well. I cried that she was so strong she could share that kind of emotion with us. I cried in self-pity because I could not, I was not in a place where it was okay for me to let those feelings out. I cried for both of us, because we are doing something so close to our hearts that we couldn’t help but feel it from our words to the proteins in our tears.
I’ve been trying to do each of the Daily Meditations I suggest on the site. When I wrote about forgiveness, I tried to let go of the way things could have been and that made me want to cry. I tried to share something I hadn’t been sharing (that I don’t want to make financial amends to Mercedes Benz ahah), and that made me want to cry. Each and every thing I’ve left as a suggestion I’ve attempted to do, and each and everyone made me want to cry. Which I suppose must be a sign that there is still more healing to do.
It’s okay, doing all this crying. Intellectually, I recognize that my body is trying to tell me something, and that I must listen closely if I am to translate the meaning of these tears. Physically, I am trying to allow myself to experience the feelings as they come up, instead of intellectualizing them, deciding what they mean and for how long they should last. Emotionally, I am becoming tired. Tired of crying. Tired of smeared mascara. Tired of still having more healing to do. Spiritually, I’ve never felt so connected.