Friday, June 11, 2010


Sometimes there are these words in my head, and they are eloquent, they are perfect, they are like feathers, falling comfortably around me, stroking my cheeks softly as they drift down to cover me. Usually I am in bed or I am driving or I am laying on the couch in that haze between asleep and awake, and I know if a pen appeared in my hand, just right that second, I could finally put it onto paper, those elusive right words.

But it's like that idea you have after too much wine, the idea to end all ideas, the idea that is going to make you a million dollars. You rush to scrawl it onto a napkin, sure that you've solved every problem you've ever had, discovered the best thing since sliced bread, and yet, when you look at that napkin later, you're not even sure what you meant to say, except that that was not it.

That's what it's like when I come here. I manage to crank out posts about the kids, who I think are funny and beautiful and infuriating, and posts about parts of life,  posts about car seats and babies and people, dying and belief systems and having a broken heart. But I have not scratched the surface of what is in my mind and heart, and partly that's because I'm a little scared to find out what that is myself. Plus I wonder how much is too much, and how much censorship is the right amount, really, and I know some people who read this blog take things I say very personally and all of that is going through my head when I'm trying to write.

Because all those words that are at the tip of my tongue, or my pencil, or my keyboard, when I try to write them out they fall like chunks of lead, or maybe bricks, and all the delicate perfection is gone, and I'm left wondering what I meant to say, after all while I jump around trying to avoid the falling debris. I want to impart the indescribable way Eli's curls felt against my neck. I want  to explain how the sand felt under my toes as I said I do. I want to remember the way it felt to hear Seth cry for the first time, and the way it felt when the silence in the room when Eli was born felt like it would swallow me whole. I want to make someone else understand the joy of talking so fast with your best friends that everyone else hears nothing but gibberish but you understand it all.  I want to remember, to be remembered, and yet my words always fall short of my imaginings.

And what I mean to say, really, in the midst of it all, is that I have so much to say.

I have so much to say, so much, and some of it is angry and mad and self righteous, and some of it is sweet and kind, and some of it hurts, and some of it is probably a little boring and only interesting to me.

And I'm pretty sure that makes me just like anyone else. Our trials are all different, as are our joys. I just watched the movie Dear John tonight (well, I did until the real, actual John who looks nothing like Channing Tatum, more's the pity, stopped by to pick something up and insisted I stop watching right now before he started crying like the girl he is, and then finally he left and I could watch again, and wow, did I digress or what?), and this isn't really about the movie at all except for the part where it's about the fact that I lived that movie, a little bit. Okay okay, kind of a lot, actually.

But that's not even my point, either. My point was about words. And about how I get to the point in a very roundabout matter. And no matter how the whole thing turned out, my deployed friend and I were master letter writers. I would fill pages with words and I don't even know what I talked lunch maybe? I just wrote. But I do remember what he would write me about, and it wasn't about where he was or what he was doing, which he couldn't really talk about anyway. He would plan the car he was going to buy when he got home, he would retell an old story, he would tell me all about how he was going to open up a car stereo business when he got out and it was going to be amazing.

He just wrote. Surfacey, deep, he just wrote, and I just wrote back. And after sending each letter I would feel this ...contentment, that what I had written was going to help someone, even if all it did was distract them from something bad or scary or just uncomfortable for a few minutes.

So I guess, even if you can't always reach the words in your head, even being a distraction with your second string words and phrases can be a blessing. But I'll keep trying to get the words I want on this page in front of me. Unlike tonight, when I've written a whole lot of nothing but I'm going to publish it anyway, because this is a lot of words in a row to just delete, and no one is required to read anyway. But I'll keep trying to get them down.

And if you write at all, I think you should too. And I think you should tell me where you write. A journal, a blog, a word document? How do you get your point across, and what works the best for you?
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