This week I have delved into a very particular part of my past, that I don't often spend much time thinking about. You see, one of the reasons I've never much cared for the city plan-less, SpinArt of suburban sprawl that is Northern Virginia, is that I lived here for two years. As a George Mason student, I drove all over these parts looking for something to do, eating mac and cheese that I made on a hot plate (flavor saver!), binge watching TV shows from the internet (trail blazer!), and pining (love craver!) for my long distance girlfriend.
Today I drove through an almost unrecognizable campus, since I had to go to the art store near the college for some supplies (I'm setting up a little satellite studio in my Mom's house so I can get back to cracking the paper whip!), and I couldn't stop the flood of old away-from-home-for-the-first-time emotions flowing through me.
As far as I can tell, I have a pretty inconsistent memory. It's a bit of a blind spot. I used to say I had a terrible memory and who are you and where's my mommy, but then I would hit that calm after crying and I'd recall that certain moments (my sister and I hiding in the clothing racks at JC Penny while my mom shopped), stories (scrambling up a cliff wall to poop in the brush, offering the alternate view from a Grand Canyon scenic platform) and people (the smell of my Pap Pap, his short sleeve shirts with starched collars, his very Irish sounding voice, the astroturf he used to cover his concrete patio and steps), I remember in vivid detail, while all the same others are foreign to me in such a way I struggle to even feign recognition.
This is however very common and not my fault (so please forgive me). In fact, the real crux of my memory problems stems from other people under representing their own. Eye-witness testimony is widely accepted as unreliable at this point, and that's because memories can be altered by nostalgia, television and by other people. We're totally memory biased. We remember ourselves as better at things than we were, we remember positive experiences over negative ones (I'm on board for that one), we distort our recollections to serve ourselves. We have all been caught telling, or or caught a friend red-handed as they claim an old story for their own, WHEN YOU KNOW FOR DAMN CERTAIN THAT'S YOUR STORY.
As I took the bus down from New York and passed the cowlicks of cordgrass that cover the marshes, I could think of nothing but swan dives. Men and women in caps and one pieces flying in the air. More mallard than mankind. Ladies appearing through the side stage of pines and arching into the water through the reeds.
The real power of nature for me has always been that it stirs me up. Like receiving a big phone call and standing and sitting, no longer understanding the purpose of either. Too wild for waiting. I think maybe these past couple years when I struggled to feel positive emotions what I really struggled with was the ability to let go. Both of things that have happened and that have not happened yet. And that is what is so hard about the way that humans seem from the outside. You cannot always tell, but we are brimming. There is an ocean inside us all. We are compelled and propelled by it, but it can be also a great weight. The weight of our limbs when they are injured or asleep.
Depression is a heavy sea. It's also a jigsaw puzzle of which the finished picture means no more than the jumble of pieces.
This week was quite a doozy, what with another job over and done and a post-surgery forecast of at best a whole lot of back and forth with the insurance company about bills and at worst a bill for one (1) total depletion of my savings (and then some). I'm going to take this week to collect my thoughts and build a little river cottage out of them, so I can drink coffee on a porch and remember how symbolic and cleansing moving water can be. SO, instead of an exploration of life, love and the pursuit of making little paper dealies, I'm going to share my current brain in a new format I'd like to call: THE LANGUAGE OF LINKS.
A place for product updates, inspiration, behind the scenes stuff, and in general a place for mind meandering.