I want you to see me; but I want to be left alone. I want you to call me; and I don’t want to answer the phone. I want you to knock at my door; and I want to hide under the covers. Invite me to your party; so I can tell you I have other plans. Give me a job; so I can spit in your face and tell you I’m entitled to more. Let me talk to you through a computer; so I don’t have to look you in the eye. Let me forget what it is to be alive; so that I can escape into a lush dream where I can control when the sun sets.
You look great today, She said to me looking upward from the bed, her face peeking out from underneath the covers playfully hiding from the sun.
I feel like a mess, I said back suddenly aware of my unkempt beard and need to run a thousand miles and squat a million squats.
I read what you wrote and I love it, Someone wrote to me over Facebook messenger.
It’s not as good as it could be, I typed back alone in my studio apartment doing my best to block out my neighbor’s vocal warmups while I re-count my rejection letters hoping for Russian interference.
Your photography is great, He mentioned over coffee.
It’s no Steve McCurry, I scoff sprinkling Stevia into my acidic coffee house java that will almost definitely cause digestive problems later in the morning while comparing myself to Nat-Geo’s Insta-feed.
You seem like you’re in a good place, She offered in passing after the meeting enjoying a muffin I silently disapprove of.
Well my car was totaled and I’ve been out of work for almost a year, I mention back followed by one of those emotionless smiles that exist only on the lips, waiting for my ride to quit being so goddamn chatty.
Okay just stop, I tell myself. Let’s try something different today.
Let’s let it in.
When offered, don’t shun it away. When smiled at, don’t avoid it. When loved, don’t negate it. Don’t pretend like it’s all a lie. They deserve better than that.
Isn’t part of living a good life accepting the good when it comes? I passive-aggressively ask myself.
Okay, I profess with my hands up to myself in semi-faux surrender, I will give it my best today. I’ll let it in.
I will let all of it in.
Some days are wonderful.
Some days aren’t.
Some days I wake up and I feel the sun on me and I feel connected to something great, finally part of something beautiful. Other days I struggle to make sense of anything, watching helplessly as my mind slips off into oblivion.
I sat here all morning, running through ideas, trying so hard to write something great and well, I came up short.
Some days are just like that I guess.
Some days are just hard.
Let go, I’m telling myself.
But I really don’t want to. Inside I’m like a child throwing a temper tantrum.
Stop trying to make this moment great, a gentle voice says again, just let go and surrender to it. Allow it to be whatever it’s going to be.
You win, God.
And so I’m letting go of today’s pages.
I’m going to go outside and smile instead.