Sunday, October 28, 2012

Questions on Heaven...

Can you tell me what heaven looks like? Is it endless trees and fall foliage, or sandy beaches and sunny skies? Will I be on my own, or among friends--known and unknown? Will I meet the people I never had the chance to in this life? Do people still age? Is everyone smiling or secretly crying?

Can you tell me what heaven sounds like? Is it peace and quiet we always asked for amidst the hustle and bustle of city life? Or is it just as loud as our living thoughts always were? Are we singing, dancing, and laughing? Do we all know the words? Are they written on our hands or imprinted in our brains? Are we listening to each other or only hearing ourselves? Is it melodic?

Can you tell me what heaven feels like? Are you homesick or is it homely? Are you mourning for those that mourn you? Are you moving on, letting go or holding on to your final show? Do you feel empty? Are you afraid? Are you certain or unsure, insecure and skeptical? Is it all a dream or are you really there? Are you awake? Are you still here?

Can you walk me through the gates? Talk me through the change and hold my hand through the pain? Rest your hand on my shoulder, tell me it will be okay. This is heaven, after all. Can you teach me how to live, exist as this immortal entity? But doesn't heaven prove mortality? Can you tell me how it works? What to do and how to act, where to go and who to know, what to say and where to play? Can you show me your heaven? Welcome me to your new world that no one else can see? Can you tell me how to get there? Can you visit me from time to time and I you? 

Answer any of the above, and I'll know it's real. 

Change of Pace

Someone recently asked me what my preferred medium for writing was and without thought I replied typewriter. But the reality is, I never wrote a single line of type on a typewriter. After I responded, my mind toiled over the reasons it came so easily, despite my unfamiliarity with such historic machination that after creating an invisible list of reasons why I prefer a typewriter, I came up with this:

Typewriters are forever linked to a writer's DNA. Of all the real reasons to use a typewriter vs. a computer (though if being completely honest I prefer a notebook and pen), typewriters produce a solid finished product whereas computers are only a digital record of your words. If a writer is continuously typing on a computer, she is never really holding an actual binding of pages, she is not feeling the nostalgia of reading, flipping pages, scribbling notes in the margins, crossing out whole sections only to realize five paragraphs later you still want to use that opening line from a passage you crossed out. Typewriters therefore are an instant record of your work, and writers need to see the fruits of their labor. Otherwise, we make excuses for not writing, we suffer from severe bouts of writer's block, we are easily distracted and looking for interruptions, we lack creativity.

Second and certainly as important as the point above, typewriters provide a necessary change of pace. Do you ever question why it seems impossible to finish that decades-old manuscript? Or why you lose your train of thought and find yourself staring at the screen for half an hour before you finally give up and slap your laptop shut? I do. Every day. So often that I'd rather skip past the questions and just put off writing all together until I can find the time to beat myself up over my unoriginal blog posts that people probably gave up on ages ago when I first gave up on it. If I had a typewriter though, I'd like to set aside a block of time every day where I write something, anything, to get my thoughts back on track and the hundreds of words in my head on paper, regardless if anyone ever reads it. Which brings us to point number 3;

Typewriters remind me that my words are written for me. It should be my choice if anyone ever reads them. Can you handle that? Knowing that your craft is something you live and love and you and only you have the power to introduce the world to that part of you. There's no need to rush, take you time. Set your own pace. Otherwise you're sharing half a thought, never digging deeper into what you're really thinking on a subject and no one really wants to read uninspired ramblings, do they?

That being said, this is a complete rambling of my uninspired mind, hoping for some sort of spark as I'm imagining this 21st century hi-def product were in fact a 19th century typewriter...

Thursday, September 27, 2012

The Letters I've Never Sent: To Lonely Girls

Dear Lonely Girl,

How are you feeling these days?  Has it been hard for you lately? Tell me what it feels like when you close your eyes and try to fall asleep. Do you still fight it? Do you stop breathing? I only ask because I feel for you. I worry that what happens to me now happens to you. We share this eerie likeness, and it hurts sometimes. But it's not all the time, at least I don't think so.

Do you worry about your future? Your entire existence? I do. I think that every day I start to fade a little bit. And maybe people can still see me, but I'm not as present as I used to be. Now even more people walk into me, or rather right through me. Like I'm not even there. Like I'm invisible--like I'm thin air. Can you imagine a world without you in it? Don't. It will only make you feel worse.

I did this all too often and realized, life would go on, people you think can't live without you, they will go on living. Without you. Maybe it will be rough for a few days, or maybe even months, but they will go on living. I'd become a faded memory, a good ol' days reminiscence, an "if she was here I bet she'd think I was funny." But beyond that, everyone is still moving forward. Caught up in their own heads, their own dramas and their own stresses, and you and I have simply ceased to exist.

Then you realize you can no longer make history. You miss the opportunity to leave your mark because you let yourself fade, never fighting to stay, and life left you, while every thing around you took your place. People, things, whatever. They're still existing. But not you.

Are you still avoiding mirrors? Stop. I glance up at least twice a day, to remind me that I'm me and I'm still here. Still a part of this fight, and though I struggle with all my might and the people around me seem to take flight, I'm still here. Lonely as it is,  I'm not, really. Cause you're right there with me. Existing, a part of this same fight--only we haven't been formally introduced yet. It's nice to meet you.

Please receive this letter with an open mind and in the event that you feel more alone than you can handle, just read it. I'll be right there with you.

a Comrade of the Cause.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Letters I've Never Sent: To The One Who Lost His Edge


It's not really fair to say you alone lost your edge. I lost mine too, more specifically, it's been missing for a while now, but I'm actively looking for it. I recently told someone that it takes tremendous tragedy for me to find my way back, and as terrible as that sounds, it's true. And lately, that tragedy has been you.

It started a few months ago, maybe more, but I've been sad for you. Really, really sad. Because I know you, and I know what you can do, but it seems as though that knowledge is lost on you. What happened? When did you stop being the annoying Mr. Know it All, Mr. Has It All, Mr. Everything? I envied you, and at times I still do, but I fear that I no longer even know you. How could we let this happen?

I went to bat for you, everyday. I thought about you and prayed for you, everyday. Whether consciously or subconsciously, I was always thinking about you and wishing you well, even in my state of anger, shock, and pain for you. If it was me that led you astray, I am truly sorry, but I can't accept that we will go on "cordially." That is not a term I care to understand, because it is not a term I believe defines us.

Have you really abandoned the old you and me? Forgotten the words I spilled so humbly, about a world unprepared for us, a not so distant future that would mold us, and me, always believing that we were stronger than the bullshit? I know you think my reaching out now was forced, but you, Mr. Know it All, Mr. Everything Happens for a Reason, is this not the most prime example? I believe I got that phone call for a reason. I believe that past actions and current relationships led me back to you, regardless of the circumstances. And I never stopped loving you.

I refuse to define my love since it's become common cause for debate. "T are you sure it's not more than a friendship? Are you sure you're not romanticizing your relationship?" Once and for all, the answer has always been no. I love you like the brother I always wish I had, the friend I never found in any of the girls at school, the man that made me all the more wiser and much more stronger than I realized. I love you, and I've never been afraid to say it. And even when I feel like I could hate you, a voice in my head chuckles, like I could ever, really hate you.

"Cordially" is unacceptable. Life goes on and gets tougher, and I know that I need you. Whether you still need me is up for debate, but as much as I want to believe that I only need myself, I am not capable of processing that right now. It seems as of late I'm not capable of processing much of anything outside of longing, fear, and sadness. For you, my family, for everything really. It's much like a dark cloud follows me around. Call it depression, maybe, but I knowingly feel this way and seem to feel I know the fix, so it can't really be depression, can it? Anyway, like I said,  I cannot accept "cordial." I understand you see a similar situation between other people, but we are not "other people." We're T & J. We're the classics, the fools, the incredibles. We're many things, but we're not cordial.

I know this is hard to take in but know this: I am in it for the long haul. Always have been. I don't expect you to wake up and remember the old you and me, but I do expect that you never forgot us. It won't be an instant remedy, but progress is all I ask for.

Are you up for it?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

The Letters I've Never Sent...Gypsetters

To The Only Gyp-Setter I know,

How do you come up with these things? You're elegant, raunchy and rough around the edges all at the same time! People choke on their words when you walk in a room, and I just shake my head and giggle in your shadow. What is it that you do?

"All we need is a tent," you told me. And in that moment, I believed you. I think I still do. The cubicle that subdues me during the day evaporates. In it's place, an oversized tent with plush pillows and Bohemian-style accents that feel like home. You are home, even when you're thousands of miles away.

I told you I'm inspired when I see you, and that's only partially true. I'm inspired when I think of you, and whatever crazy thing you just might be doing now. I'm inspired by your due diligence, or rather you not doing any, actually. I'm inspired by your ability to just be you, wishing I could just be me. Instead, I'm chained to a greater world that swallows my creativity and blindfolds my thoughts. Help me.

You defined a gyp-setter for me and I laughed. You don't need anything, you don't even need a destination. you just let the wind carry you, and oh how I sometimes wish to follow. This is my ode to you, my praise to you, my envy.

Keep inspiring me, keep outlasting me, and keep driving me. Most importantly, keep going on your journey to any and everywhere, or perhaps even nowhere, and when you get there, send me a postcard.


Monday, March 5, 2012

The Letters I've Never Sent...Mr. Verbal Minimalist


Dear Mr. Verbal Minimalist,

Alas, the time has come to address a growing concern of mine that I find simple yet complex for I can’t say how you’ll react. Quite frankly, I’m not sure you’ll be able to say how you’ll react either. But nevertheless, I’ll give it a shot.

A woman who speaks her mind is not all that hard to find, but when she takes the time to decipher your mind, now that is something else entirely. She is patient, though she’s brewing a hesitation for your resistance to speak freely. Do I have permission to speak freely?

I mean really, is it easier to pretend you’re interesting, better yet, intriguing, because the fascade is you’re some sort of mystery? To me it’s almost outright creepy. Step outside your comfort zone and maybe more people will find you comforting. Good listeners are only good if they take the time to reflect and respond to whatever they’ve heard, but when you’re only hearing words, or verbal exchanges that sound like words but you can’t really tell either way, it suddenly goes from good, to pretty terrible—food for thought.

But that’s not even what I’ve been meaning to tell you. My intent is really to inform you, educate, and perhaps enlighten you. I’m losing all that patience you constantly tell me I have. And what is more, I’m glad, so glad that I don’t have to deal with all of this complicated mess that is at the very least, your emotions. I mean I thought I was emotional—really, really emotional. But you have far exceeded my expectations of a man feeling his feelings and expressing them. That’s the other point I wanted to make.

I get the ‘woe is me act,’ and I get the “I’m not sure what to say” predicament. But if you’re not sure what to say, and you know you’ve got the ‘woe is me’ act down pact, why not try and refrain from the wrist-slitting commentary you do occasionally provide when I pry, and I pry, and I pry. My ears are bleeding from our painful verbal exchanges, when it would be much simpler to make a break for it…For both of us.

We’re passed the small talk and well beyond the exchange of pleasantries (which by the way you’ve never really shared), so let’s stop here. Let’s move beyond this, and beyond the two us because really, there’s no coming back from this. I’ve reached the point of being irked at the sight of your name in my inbox, and if I actually had time to stop and delete your number, or didn’t have to worry about you randomly calling and roping me all the way back in, I’d have cut the cord a long time ago. But you keep popping up again.

What ever happened to fun? I mean actual, simple fun that happens in the now, and doesn’t go much further than that. Women have the ‘what if’ debate down cold—we don’t need men entering that realm too. We may think we do, but no, we don’t. That’s our role.

I’m not angry, nor am I trying to upset you. Apologies, if that’s all that I do. You deserve someone that’s truly interested in your drama, and someone who doesn’t care that you’re just a bit more melodramatic than they are. Because let’s face, you are more melodramatic than many. Your silence is beyond awkward, and the minimal conversation you are capable of has the potential to be great, but you haven’t reached that level yet. Hopefully some day you will though. I’ll pray for you.

With that I’ll take my leave, and hope that you’re not plotting against me. This was all meant to advise, critique and assist you. I hope you’ll see it that way.

Farewell for now,


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

#10. "The Letters I've Never Sent"


Dear Mom,

I wanted to let you know that I'll be okay. I had a dream the other day, of me a few years from now. I was so happy.

I was in love. I was successful. I had a house. I never stopped smiling. I want to let you know that you are my rock. I would wait to tell you all of this, but why bother? It means as much now as it ever will that you know how much I respect you.

You have mastered the art of motherhood, regardless of how any of us may seem now. You love us, protect us, and encourage us everyday, and you are appreciated.

The dream that I had the other day? It was my wedding day, you were in the front row laughing and crying all the same, perhaps at who the groom was (because so was I). An unlikely companion, but fitting for what we already know I believe in. I don't have many loves in this world, but you are at the top of the list, along with the family you've created.

Sometimes I worry that dreaming too close to reality is a dangerous thing, but I can't help it. Perhaps I reached a place where I can't tell the difference, nor do I want to, because I am living my dream. You never demanded I choose a different path, and I know I'll be okay.

Hard times are ongoing, but so is fulfillment. I want you to know that I am trying. I will not stop trying to achieve my goals, and no matter how long it takes, I will get there. Watch and see.

Are you worried I'm not seeing what's in front of me? Or that maybe I'm chasing something I will never catch? You've never let on that you are, and I thank you for that. Thank you for trusting me to make my own sound decisions.

But about that dream that I had the other day. I was so happy. I laughed and I smiled, I cried, I practically ran down the aisle! Completely shocked at my eager actions in my dream, I was subconsciously seeing the me I've been afraid of for so long. The one that believes in love, companionship, and all the other makings of some day starting my own family.

No one is perfect. I'm certainly far from it. I'm most comfortable admitting my flaws and expressing my own doubt; some weird defense mechanism I guess. But for some reason I can't get there today. I'm just all positive all the time.

I know good things are coming. I mean all this happy has to be unnatural! Perhaps I'm preparing for good news of some kind, just not sure what kind yet. But I'll let you know.

I wanted you to know that I'm going to be okay.

We all are.