Tonight was supposed to be a celebration.
I turned in my last paper and took my last exam of this midterm period. Proud of my work, I rewarded myself with a night of dinner, white wine, turtle brownies, and gossip girl/the office with Micah and JP, who I hadn’t seen in over a week. I needed this. The stress of this week, and my failure to perform at the level of my expectations were taking their toll, and I was starting to question myself again.
A few glasses of wine to dull the pain, and it all falls apart. I fall apart.
Shame on me for forgetting that alcohol and self doubt are always a volatile combination. The only combination worse than this? Being an animal lover who can’t resist petting cute kittens, when you are incredibly allergic to them…necessitating a dose of allergy medicine…after you’ve already started drinking. The result? I think this picture speaks for itself. Gross.
Pull yourself together, I scold myself. You’ve held it together for this long. Just keep waiting, things will work out and it will all be worth it. Everything will be okay.
But it never is.
It doesn’t matter how quickly I was able to pick up the pieces. The fact remains, that I
was am broken to begin with. Here I sit, with my itchy, puffy face and red, swollen eyes…intoxicated by pinot grigio and drugged with Claritin…slowly coming to terms with the realization that the emotional damage done to me might have been irrevocable, and I may have lost the ability to fully trust someone with my heart again–no matter how worthy, honorable, and deserving that someone might be.
All I ask of anyone is unabridged honesty. Maybe that’s the problem. I don’t ask enough. I don’t ask for reassurance, even when I need it most. Instead, I sit and wait. For a sign, a glimmer of hope, an expression of sentiment, commitment, confirmation, acknowledgment…something–anything to help me believe again.
I wait because I fear that it is too much to ask.
And then, aided by enough wine and/or anti-histamines to be truly honest with myself, I see that my time has become consumed by the waiting. Waiting for others to come to terms with their feelings so much so that I discount the value of my own.
So I wait (impatiently) for the return of numbness. The indifference that shielded me so efficiently in the past–allowing me to survive waking up not knowing what hurt the day would bring me, how many lies I would uncover (or how much of what I thought I knew would be deconstructed), which unfamiliar women would make their presence known thus rendering me incommodious in comparison, what stories had been omitted from the telling, or what would finally succeed in breaking me.
I wait for the proficiency to forget how to care, so that the pain of waiting for an answer to a question which I can barely articulate (let alone find the courage to ask) does not drown me in its ambivalence.