Bottom's Up!

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Friday, May 25, 2007

Party of one please

Warning: There's a pity party going on here. Normally I don't invite people to these kinds of events. Besides the fact that no one really wants to go to a pity party, is the indulgent privacy of it. It's been quite the bash, and I have decided that instead of waiting for the door to close with the noise and commotion safely on the other side, I'm going to leave it open and see what else enters the room. You, kind witness, may stay or go. Don't say I didn't warn you, and thanks for being here if you do decide to read on.

I've been really low this past week. After the high of two entries and a great night out, I crashed. I'm still, still! trying to figure out how to ride the current that will take me away from where I've been. And since storms and calms are part of the journey, troughs and waves are also inevitable.

My hands look like they've been blistered as if the only thing I have had to climb out with is a ladder of white hot steel. The eczema is back and driving me to distraction as my homeopathic doctor tries to map a way to heal what needs to be healed in my gut. These are the two poles of my body, attached and repelling all at once. I've had the eczema more extensively from finger tips to elbows (a couple of years ago it was six months of it looking like evening gloves stained a pale red), and for many years in a row (It dominated both my hands for 7 years, starting when I was thirteen.) and I'm sure it's part of my over all auto-immune defects as much as the connections between my mind and my body.

I've been thinking about that first time, when I was a teen, and the pure denial I was living in then; I had been well trained, so much so that I would wash dishes and clean everything-- for fear of worse things -- except for my bedroom, despite the pain. I would wake in the mornings and fill a sink with water, and immerse my hands into what felt like acid to my skin. Slowly I would bend them, splitting the skin so I could move my hands that day. I itched and scratched for years and not one doctor was able to help me. I never let boys hold my hands, but I still used them in other ways besides the torture chores, to learn pottery and attempt basketball. I just lived with it and kept my words, thoughts and feelings, about it small and sparse and as far away from myself as possible.

Those years of painful and malfunctioning hands made it frustrating to hold a pen, and my poor writing became even more illegible, but in me grew the desire to play guitar and the moment I got my hands back (It took months to get used to my pretty hands!) My sister's boyfriend, and my friend G, strung up a intonationally challenged classical guitar that the eldest sister got years before, and I got my friend B. M. to teach me to play. And I practiced daily until the sister closest to me in age gave me what I still play today in a rare moment of recognition that brought me to tears. I still play when I can, not today not for the last week. But playing gives me so much. I began my writing efforts in song and though I don't do that much any more I will cherish my music for it's own sake.

This time around it's me and the computer, my right hand is frozen in one position (In the film "The Greatest Show on Earth," with James Stewart who plays a clown, there's a trapeze artist, "the Great Sabastian," who falls and becomes partially crippled; his hands look like claws -- once he flew like a bird in flight, he then became perched. My hand is in the same position as his, almost, , which is perfect for key boarding. Ironically my finger tips are fairly clear so I can type. But the only thing on my mind is the misery I am feeling. I'm not thinking straight and my emotions are of a single scale, minor I would expect.

So I'm typing and thinking, feeling misery in a way I've never allowed myself before, waiting. I'm itching and scratching. I'm playing a lot of cards (on the puter also.) I don't have to clean today so a shower was my only necessary torment. Not much map making done today. And I cannot tell you what else will walk in this room, besides you.

I know this will pass, but in this moment the misery is all that there is. And I'm looking out the window, again, waiting for this party to be over or for something else to enter the room.

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