Thursday, August 10, 2006

more on August 10 2006

For some reason, this phrase keeps running through my head: "Of all the things I've lost, I miss my mind the most."

While this is usually a humorous saying, I've been pondering it in a more serious light.

I spend a lot of time thinking about what I used to do. Stuff like: I used to be able to keep my stuff organized. I used to work a full-time+ job. I used to be able to socialize without needing to hibernate for several days afterwards. I used to be able to do a project from start to finish. I used to write lots n lots n LOTS of poetry. I used to draw. I used to dress fashionably. I used to exercise. I used to be able to go places all by myself (my gosh, I went to ALASKA by myself--I live in Maine). I used to enjoy all these things, too.

I feel like I am living in this dark little tunnel in my head, which only lets in little things at a time. Occasionally I have this little flash where I am able to see huge spaces and feel like I can actually DO all the things I want to be able to do. I can never tell how long this flash will last....minutes, hours, days. Inevitably, though, the light goes out and I am back in my little tunnel.

This little tunnel is especially difficult to deal with when there are things I *have* to be doing. Like this trip. I have been literally FORCING myself to do things today like the laundry, straightening up the house a little, trying to pack. It's been a huge struggle, because what I really, really, really want to do is crawl into a little hole and just have the world leave me alone. I don't want to go on this trip, and be surrounded by thousands of people I don't know and have no way to escape, nowhere to hide. I don't want to have to be "ON" for three days.

This is the third year I've gone on this conference. I know I'll survive it, it's not *altogether* unknown. I have my Xanax. Barbara knows how I am, she knows I don't do people well. (however, she's *not* the one I'm sharing a room with. I would be better if I was sharing with her, or if I had a room to myself. I enjoy Helen a lot, she's a wonderful woman, but she's not one of my "safe" people)

There *are* enough differences about this year to make me jittery, including what *should* be a highlight of the trip (and paradoxically, it *is* a highlight for me, although I am terrified), which is the members-only reception with the speakers that we are going to tomorrow night. Last year I briefly met Patsy Clairmont (which was WONDERFUL....I have felt a strong connection with her since the first time I saw her speak). But this reception (which I recognize is a wonderful opportunity, and I am so fortunate Barbara is sharing it with me) is just freaking me all out.

Anyway, leaving the trip alone, because I don't want to throw myself into more of a tizzy than I am already in....

As I've been progressing along on the house today, I've been feeling really nostalgic for the days when I could actually accomplish a lot. When I was the "go-to" person, who could help you get it together, who could come up with the great ideas, the one who was dancing in the living room during the party because the music put me in the mood, the girl who swung her hips as she walked 'cause she *knew* she was pretty.

There are still little flashes of that girl, just enough to highlight that she spends most of her time hiding, exhausted and scared, in that dark little tunnel. I miss her.

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