Monday, December 31, 2007
Revisit all my old albums.
When I say 'revisit', I mean that I want to grab my big ass black case of CDs, and prop it next to my bed, and listen to every single one of them. (Some of the albums I have I removed from my iPod awhile back when I started a phase of being selectively moody and extremely picky of which songs would "make the cut")
TL and I were talking about how every single time you revisit a song, you know it's a fantastic one because each time you listen, there's another meaning than the one you previously thought was there. They might both be there - but you suddenly have a whole new appreciation for the song that you'd never had before.
I felt that way about Coldplay, Radiohead, Frou Frou, Imogen Heap, and Paula Cole (among some others) the very first time I heard them.
I remember listening to "Tiger"(from Paula Cole's 'This Fire') at age 13, and sitting there, listening to this grown woman scream and curse, and yell at the top of her lungs. It was raunchy, it was raw, it was dirty, it was sexy, it was annoying, it was frightening, it was inspiring, and it was melodic...all at the same time. It was way too many emotions to take in at one time, and although there was a quality in her voice and melodies that attracted me, I remember thinking after the track had ended that I was leaning towards not liking it very much.
I came back to the track 2 years later, this time it was late at night, and I just popped any old CD into my CD player out of the pile on the floor and it turned out to be 'This Fire'. Suddenly, "Tiger" starts playing and the lyrics immediately pop out at me...I remember thinking, Holy Shit! This is crazy great stuff right here!
"I've left Bethlehem and I feel free, I've left the girl I was supposed to be and someday I'll be born..."
Oh. my. goodness. That's all I have to say. And where before, her screaming towards the end of the song had frightened me, the second time I heard it, it was the best fucking part of the song. It was affirmation that no one was holding her down, no one was going to force her to fit anyone's mold, and she was finally finding who she was, and who it was she wanted to be, regardless of what people thought. That's exactly how I was feeling around that time - and still do.
Sooo, if you see me at a stop light one of these days or rolling through your neighborhood, don't be too surprised to see the windows down and me screaming "High and Noon!!!" like a possessed crazy ass. I'm just 'revisiting' my albums.
Friday, December 28, 2007
For instance, I am a complete spaz. How do I know this? Because secretly, I have begun to stress over everything. And when I say secretly, I mean that I am a closet spaz. The kind of person that looks cool as a cucumber from the outside - the girl who says things like, "ohh, I am not worried one bit!" with a reassuring laugh, or "I don't give a damn!" with defiance and consternation when really inside I am like a Jenga game missing a dozen or so of my sturdy pieces and about ready to collapse at any time.
Does it mean I am crazy? I don't know, for sure. I think it makes me a lot more sane, to be quite honest. I think anyone who says they don't care about something is probably trying to hide the fact that they are deathly worried about something else. I just admitted to myself this year that I most definitely worry about way too much.
And this isn't zoned to any particular thing, or part of my life. My spazziness holds no boundaries and no prejudice. And it's not that I worry every single second of my life because then I would definitely go insane, but I guess I am talking about those specific times where I find myself feeling trapped, and with an acute case of butterflies fluttering wildly in my stomach. Those are the times that I wish I was more like my high school teenage self. I think I handled stress a lot better when I was younger, which is unusually the opposite of what most people say. I have heard that stress management gets better as you get older but for me, I've become a lot more lop-sided on this issue of "stress management".
I think because I found the definition of "worthiness" to have a lot more credibility than when I was younger. I didn't really have people I cared about or who cared about me in my nearest surroundings like I do now. There's more at risk if something goes wrong, or if I don't feel like I am measuring up to my own standards.
Anyways, for New Year's, resolution #1 is to not be such a spaz. This is a tricky one. I don't want to QUIT worrying completely because then I run the risk of becoming a complete asshole. (Who wants that?) I think the resolution more specifically is that I just want to learn how to pick my worrying battles. Pick the ones I know are worth the worry, and shed the other ones away. Stress is great, and an awesome character builder and I don't ever want to push it out of my way - just shave a little bit off of the sides here and there. That's Resolution #1, so far. The rest are more to come as I think of them.
Wednesday, December 26, 2007
But in the meantime, let me share with you a track that I have been falling in love with as I've hit the road to visit with family and friends over the past few weeks. If you listen closely to the track or read the lyrics carefully - there is a little bit of everyone between the lines.
No I'm not color blind, I know the world is black and white.
Try to keep an open mind, but I just can't sleep on this tonight.
Stop this train, I wanna get off and go home again
I can't take the speed it's moving in
I know I can, but honestly - won't someone stop this train?
Don't know how else to say it, don't wanna see my parents go
One generation length's away
for fighting life out on my own
Stop this train I wanna get off and go home again
I can't take the speed its moving in
I know I can, but honestly - won't someone stop this train?
So scared of getting older, I'm only good at being young.
So I play the numbers game to find a way to say that life has just begun
Had a talk with my old man, said help me understand
he said turn 68, you'll renegotiate...
don't stop this train,
don't for a minute change the place your in
don't think I couldn't ever understand
I tried my hand,
John honestly, we'll never stop this train...
Once in awhile, when it's good
It'll feel like it should
And they're all still around
And you're still safe and sound
And you don't miss a thing
Till you cry when you're driving away in the dark
Stop this train
I wanna get off
And go home again
I can't take the speed it's moving in
I know I can
Cause now I see I will never stop this train
Tuesday, December 18, 2007
EJ, my subconscious whispered to me in my sleepy stupor, you should pack work-out clothes for lunch time.
Thus, for whatever Force possessed me, I walked out of the house this morning with the now unfamiliar feeling of my gym bag strap pressing diagonally against my chest. Contents: A bottle of water, gym sneakers, my comfy Puma black track pants, and matching tank and some sport socks.
I don't know why I thought today would be a good day to start back at the gym, but in the end, I am glad that I did.
Once 11:45 am rolled around, I glanced at the clock, hoping that somehow it'd motivate me to get my lazy ass up off the chair. And then I made the announcement to my coworker over in the next cubicle (Anyone who has ever worked in a cubicle environment understands that there somehow or other is an unspoken bond between you and one of the cubicle mates around you, mine just happens to be right next to me.) that I was to go to the gym.
"Really?! Are you joking? The gym?!" she exclaimed.
Her tone embarrassed me. Okay, okay, people, I've been slacking. Hardcore. But it felt like with my hair, also went my energy. That's not the case now, but it was at one point.
"Yeees," I answered slowly, "yes, I plan to go to the gym in the next few minutes."
"It's been a couple months since you've been hasn't it?"
Wow, okay. Even worse when someone other than John Basedow, Jr. notices and makes comment of you not having gone to the gym in a while. The scene and motivation was set now. I was committed. I had to go to the gym now to prove all these people I could. That, and prove to myself.
I walked into the familiar sights, sounds and smells of the gym. Walked into the dressing room and was immediately greeted by a familiar face. When I used to work out everyday before I lost the hair, I had become friends with a lot of people I'd see everyday there. The workers, the gym-goers, everyone. But particularly this lady, A. She works in my building actually, and is absolutely the sweetest person you want to meet. When I first met her, she had told me she started going to the gym to get back into shape. She was probably the most committed, and determined person out of all the people at the gym, besides the older lady that I always see that looks tighter than the Abs Made Simple video.
She asked me where I had been since it'd been awhile since she had seen me.
I explained to her that I had taken a little hiatus from working out - mostly from depression and sadness in the beginning, but in the end, it turned out all right - leading to a peaceful inner me and a better handle on my inner strength and capabilities. All the fun stuff you've been reading about here.
Once I began to tell her about the alopecia, I removed my ski hat to reveal my shaved head.
"Well, it looks great," A said, "you have a beautiful face anyway."
"Thanks." (I never know what to say when people say this to me. I take to feeling the redness in my cheeks settle in and I smile and just nod my head and offer a quick, "thanks")
The rest of my workout went rather fast. I grabbed an elliptical and A grabbed one right next to mine. We talked about everything from Christmas shopping, to her by-pass surgery, to her new diet, to even trying to get her husband out for exercise. Within 45 minutes, we had both run about two miles a piece and didn't even feel like we had run anything at all.
"I am so glad that I ran into you today, EJ," A said, offering me a hug.
"No, no...hey, thank YOU for running into me here. My first day back went a helluva lot better than I expected because of you." And I meant it.
I am a full believer that things happen for a reason, and going there today and feeling like I was truly missed by people I wasn't even sure had acknowledged my existence every day at the gym before...it really helped to solidify all the reasons in my head that I had had about how good it was going to be getting back into working out again. I feel like a million bucks after that run, too.
Monday, December 17, 2007
Blah, I will get to it eventually. 'Tis the season to keep your sanity cap on tightly, brave those massively packed mall corridors and purchase gifts for every Tom, Dick, Jane and Harry that you know (I know more guys than girls, what can I say?) and hurry your ass home so you can wrap them all up with nice paper and ribbon, etc., etc., etc...
It might sound like I am a bit "bah humbug-ish" but really, I do love this time of season sans the damn Christmas carols! I love going out and buying gifts for all my close friends and family, and wrapping them up, and then seeing the surprised faces and happy faces all over the place.
But this year is different. I am just not ready. At all. It's bad when John Basedow, Jr has totally and fully completed his X-mas shopping and I have still five or six people to buy for...that's bad. Why? Because I specifically remember several years being spent going out the day before X-mas to help him buy gifts for everyone. It was fun, but I was glad it was him that was behind and not me. And now, it's me. Revenge has reared its ugly, nasty head.
So I guess that's why this year's holidays hasn't been as pleasant as it should be for me. And it should be tons pleasant. Mainly because I can drive myself ANYWHERE and EVERYWHERE to go X-mas shopping. Which, might I add, I have been. I am loving it, and have grown to love driving more and more each day - except for parallel parking...that's not something I love at all.
Alas, though, I haven't forgotten to write about my birthday. I love all that were able to make it out to celebrate - it made my year to see all those happy faces. And a great big love to all those who couldn't, just 'cause you weren't there doesn't mean that I didn't feel your love in other ways this year. I have been completely blessed with everything that I have overcome this year - and all of the friendships that I have that have grown stronger, and new ones that I am excited are just beginning... and just all the wonderful growth that I feel that I have made for myself, personally - even though the times were tough and sometimes ugly - I feel that I have come out a better person, a more confident woman, and I am finally for the first time in my life loving almost everything about myself - and learning to accept the things about myself that I can't change and don't necessarily love all that much. And that's okay.
I promise, pictures, pictures people. I really promise. But hey, I am in a procrastinating mood recently. I just registered for class last night on my laptop in an oversized t-shirt that I got for free from the Irish Festival last year and my comfy brown robe with a cup of hot chocolate listening to the rain beat against my bedroom window... God, it felt so amazing to be lazy. But I knew I had to register soon or die. DIE, I tell you! I still have to go to school later on this week and argue the fact that my financial aid is not showing up on the system to cover my registration from being cancelled. Nothing ever works out like a piece of cherry pie for me... but that's what makes life so interesting with me.
I also promise, more thought provoking posts later on...I have been writing in my journal more and more, reunited my music roots back to John Mayer's "Any Given Thursday" and Radiohead's "Pablo Honey" and cried, and explored my inner workings... and have lots of mind-tittilating subjects that I have feasted my mind on to share with all of you.
***Quick Shout-out to Ms. PT & Jolee*** Thanks for "forcing" me out on Friday night, and "forcing" me to celebrate my belated birthday with you two, and "forcing" me to go to 1722 and talk with the meathead in the back lounge area so I could be your "guy friend" that night. Haha. Have fun in Taiwan, Ms. PT and Jolee, you know I am there for you no matter what.
Tuesday, December 4, 2007
Ahh yes, vending machines that hold to key to unhealthy living. All the unwanted fat and calories I could possibly ask for in just one package of self-dubbed "Homemade Grandma Cookies" or in "Fiery Habenero" Doritos which by the way comes in a bag no bigger than the palm of my hand and holds about the portion size of a 6-month old. (Doritos are my secret enemy. I LOOOOVEEEE Doritos. I have three bags at home hidden in a secret place for that certain someone who likes to come over to my house and chastise me for eating so much junk food. Take that, John Basedow, Jr!! :-))
I just finished my feast of Peanut Butter cookies, Cheese crackers with peanut butter filling, and Salt & Vinegar chips (I know it sounds disgusting right now but it felt soooo gooooood going down). To balance out the equation, rather than buy my regular binge drinking can of Grape soda, I opted for the 20 oz. bottle of Aquafina. That's right. I went for the 20 oz. Boo yah!
The wind is ridiculous near my building. Most likely because of the water, and how close we are to it - therefore when the winds pick up - they really pick up. Therefore, in the mornings, I grab the warmest clothes I can find. And seeing as I haven't got too many sweaters/long-sleeved shirts on hand (don't ask me but once I moved into Dumb-dalk I couldn't find half my winter or fall clothing that I once had) I tend to grab summer clothes and layer like a crazy woman.
But apparently this isn't good enough for the "semi-business casual corporate" world that I am in. Whatever that "Semi-business casual corporate" nonsense is. I got called in and told that what I was wearing yesterday was too casual and crossing the line. Not in detail, just that - that it was too casual. But this morning, it came upon someone to tell me in detail why specifically my outfit was too casual yesterday. Apparently - the "flannel" material, mixed with the attached "hood" was too casual. Flannel? What if I am cold? I had a decent shirt underneath but I was freezing in this office.
I was also told that my brown cords were "pushing it" that I had on today. Since when are cordoroys "pushing it" with the code? Do they want me to freeze my ass off and get the chills?
It was suggested to me that maybe I should go back and revisit the employee handbook for the dress code... I suddenly feel like I am back in Catholic middle school.
Monday, December 3, 2007
1. slight minor bump into the side of the road, onto the curb, that I was afraid had ruined the alignment on my car.
2. Got lost a whole 3 times going to various places within the past week. Two of which I had to phone those I was headed to to get the final directions and find where exactly the hell I had found myself and the one time I was able to find my way home without any trouble at all - granted I don't know how I got where I eventually found myself, but the final result is that I made it home.
1. For one I have been able to visit friends I haven't seen in AGES. Which is always an awesome thing. I love seeing everyone, and catching up. It's nice.
2. Although J was sort of concerned that I might not be able to remember the way to Blockbuster in Timonium, or be able to navigate my way back - I insisted that I would be okay...and whatdoyaknow? I was perfectly fine! I had to drive all the way back York Rd to Towson to get onto Perring Pkwy and take the beltway there (because that's what I was familiar with even though I knew it was out of the way and a longer route) and I got home with no worries.
3. I drove all the way to DC!! Granted J was in the car with me, and I was following D - but still, I have to give it up to me, because going a little above the speed limit has freaked me out recently - due to the fact that I am just still getting used to driving again.
4. I drove BACK to Baltimore from LP's and D's house all by myself...following J... which I tell you, at 4 AM is not particularly easy. Especially cuz I was sleepy, tired, worn out from dancing, etc. But I made it. Although my parallel parking job was crooked, I could've cared less when I got home.
Now it's back to work - I have class tonight but I am soo exhausted. It's funny how just going out a few times in a weekend really wears you out to the core. I am so so so tired, and ready to take a 100-year nap.
PS. I went to LP's "Slumber Party" Saturday night - totally had a GREAT time...more on that later.
AND - I have decided that I want to register for AUTOCROSS this Spring! I told J that I am totally ready - and can't wait to go and have fun!!
Thursday, November 29, 2007
So I have dedicated this blog post to me writing down all the songs that I have fallen in love with again while being in my Corolla.
1. All 80's love ballads. Jeeeesus Christ, as corny and as goober as half of these songs are, the most brilliant song writing occurred in the 80's. Point blank and simple. I mean, c'mon... Spandau Ballet? Boy Meets Girl? Anyone?
2. RENT The Musical Soundtrack (Disc 1 and 2) I don't care who you are or what you think - this music is fantastic and I could sing "Light My Candle" till I am blue in the face.
2.5. Okay, you know what? I take the above statement back and replace it with ALL musical soundtracks. I'm sure the guy at the traffic light on Route 40 thought I was strange singing "Defying Gravity" at the top of my lungs with the windows down.
3. Justin Timberlake's "Justified". Particularly "Take A Ride" track. I LOVE that track!
4. Shivaree "Half On A Baby" (THANK YOU GOOSE~!!!!) If you like R. Kelly, this will make you think twice when you hear how f&cking awesome this girl sounds covering his song.
5. Jurassic 5 "Feedback" album. (Thank you to my favorite "black kid", Jos)
6. Ernie Halter's "Congress Hotel" - I think of his song "Love, Look At Me Now" as my eternal scream out to the world. I love his acoustic sound - and it's a nice raw melody to help keep time while you're on the road.
7. Amos Lee - Anything by Amos Lee. My God, one of the most serene things to do is to be moving - whether it be by bus, by car, by train, and to listen to Amos Lee at high levels - what a peaceful place to be in. I would always nestle into a corner of the train from DC to MD and listen to my Amos Lee playlist on my iPod over and over and over and over again.
8. John Mayer - "Heavier Things" The entire album. Particularly "New Deep".
9. Radiohead - ANYTHING. Ahhh, totally puts me in that zone. Thinking deep, feeling the music, and just me and the road.
10. Okay, K-Pop...alright? I'll admit, I still have my old H.O.T. CD, and my old G.O.D. CD - and yes, okay, I still listen to Brown Eyes and BoA. But I am totally stuck in the 90's when it comes to Korean music. The last album I bought was 5tion's first debut album...yes, I'm that behind with the Korean times.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
So at around 6:40pm I headed out to meet her and a few of her friends at XS on N. Charles Street for dinner.
It was fun finally being able to get to where I wanted to go, and be able to leave the house when I wanted - except when it came time to find a parking spot. I ended up paying $10.00 (yes, 10 whole dollars) to park in a garage over on Cathedral Street and walk the two blocks up Preston to where it met Charles. I conjured up the reasoning that I needed the exercise anyways.
I walked into the familiar sights and sounds of XS. The bustle of the girls and guys dressed in black from head to toe, scrambling down the three flights of long stairs to get to the kitchen in time for the food not to be cold for the patrons. (That part always amazed me.)
I found a seat on the second floor and waited for the others to arrive.
Once they did, I found out that my friend's best friend/roommate was celebrating her early birthday. We ordered, and had pleasant conversation and then decided that we would go back to my friend's apartment where she had baked a cake for the occasion in an attempt to emulate "Ace of Cakes". It was actually an awesome attempt and I am going to have to steal some photos from her later on.
As we dove into the four tiered cake and gathered around her dining room table, the conversation suddenly took a turn towards attending to finding birthparents.
I don't know how we got on it - I think it started out as an arbitrary topic and ended up with the birthday girl telling a story about how she never wanted to ever find her birthfather - that she knew who he was, but that he never gave a damn about her so why should she try to find him? She ended with, "Nothing ever comes good of that - I am totally against the whole search thing, nothing ever comes good so it's not even worth bothering to try."
And it got me thinking - am I, too, against the whole search thing? Is that the subconscious thought in my head that has really stopped me from taking all of the many chances that I have had to go back to Korea and find my birthparents?
I just got another offer last week from a program that helps adoptees take their first journey back home. I could easily take that trip and then head over to the G.O.A'L. office and ask Dae-won to help me find them. Put in the search application.
And even though I kept the email in my inbox, I know that I probably won't take the offer. In fact, I know for a fact that I won't take the offer. And it's starting to bug me as to what my real reasoning behind it is. I keep telling myself that I would never be able to get the time off from work to go on that two week trip like that. I tell myself that I wouldn't want to go alone if I did take that trip - so if I had to go alone, I would skip out.
But jobs come a dime a dozen (if you're not too picky), and I only have one pair of birthparents. Two people that aren't going to be immortal forever and ever. So why am I not rushing?
The answer? I don't know. I think that it is something there that digs a lot deeper into the surface that I am not yet ready to uncover just yet. I thought I had this all figured out - and that I would go back and find them - and we'd live partially a f&cked-up life of twists and turns between my adoptive parents and my birthparents. And I was okay with that. But in recent times, I have found that my answer to that age old question of: "Have you ever thought about looking for your birthparents?" has gone from a "oh yeah, totally. I really want to." to a "Uhhh, I'm not sure, I am kinda taking it easy right now."
It's like asking a person whether they've decided to take the Low Carbs diet or not. And it's killing me that I am still so undecided.
Tuesday, November 27, 2007
Yes, I have been driving. Where to? Places. I have been careful not to ring up too many miles in the short time that I have had my beautiful baby, however, I have come into some slight minor bumps along the way (Several years without driving will make a person go crazy, and go apesh*t to the point where I have temporary amnesia on how basic functions work. But mind you, these bouts of memory lapse last all of about two seconds. Too bad two seconds is all it takes to bump into someone/something, etc. etc.)
I promise, more decent blogging to come. Lots more exciting things are going to happen in my life. I just feel it.
My birthday is in about two weeks! And then Christmas! The only good part about Christmas is the giving. I love watching people's faces when I give them gifts. It's probably one of the best sights of life that I'd have to say make it all worth it in the end.
Saturday, November 24, 2007
for cars, for left foot accelerators, for poetry, for blogs, for freedom, for crummy jobs that help pay the rent and put food on the table, and for sunsets:
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Robin Roberts of ABC News recently got diagnosed with breast cancer and made the decision to keep a video diary of her journey to air each morning on Good Morning America to share with America the devastating impact that having cancer has.
This morning, Robin Roberts aired a video addition to her diary: a video of her losing her hair, and also a video of her making the conscious decision of shaving it off before it all fell out.
"As hard as it was, I knew what I had to do."
I sobbed uncontrollably while watching the video this morning, and cried just now watching it again. So much of my fear of losing my hair and the empowering feeling that I was left with once I took the plunge and made the commitment to shave my head came rushing back while watching Robin sit there in the chair staring into the mirror at her reflection as the hair was slowly removed piece by piece.
"When I finally did it, I took the power back. Because now I was making the decision instead of letting the cancer make the decision."
I cannot imagine how draining cancer and chemotherapy must be, and how much of your energy and will is tested in a time like that. I am so blessed that my emotional journey ended at just hair loss, rather than the immense physical pain that accompanies surviving cancer.
Going along even more with bald being beautiful - there was a segment about alopecia areata on NBC's local newscast at 5 o' clock news earlier tonight in Baltimore. A woman locally is suffering and wanted to raise awareness.
I have decided for sure that next year I want to put together a fund raiser for alopecia areata awareness. I believe that there is enough advance in modern medicine that with effective funding a cure can be found. I'll keep everyone posted as I slowly begin the process of putting together my first ever public fundraiser.
Sunday, November 11, 2007
Goosey brought to my attention that I never addressed the fact of where my father was all those hours --
He was in another hospital room sleeping the entire time!!
His nurse who had released him at around 4 AM had suggested that it might be too early for him to call his wife for a ride home, so therefore she offered him an empty hospital bed to sleep in.
What she failed to remember to do though, was the write it down on his chart that she had promised to wake him up around 7 AM so that when her shift ENDED at 7 AM that the next nurse that took over would know that some dude was sleeping in the empty hospital room in the ER.
My Dad didn't realize that there was all this commotion going on around him until at around 8 AM, a nurse bringing another patient into the room woke him up. She quickly pulled the door closed again and behind the door, my father could overhear her saying to the other nurse, "I had no idea anyone was in there."
At that, my Dad decided to glance at the clock on the wall and realized that he had never been woken up and that he had overslept. So he grabbed his clothes and jacket, and headed for the bathroom out in the hall.
As he stepped out of the bathroom, three police officers approached him.
"You wouldn't happen to me [insert Dad's name here], would you Sir?" asked the police officer.
At this, my Dad said he turned white and kinda gulped when he replied "Yes".
"Well, you have a LOT of people looking for you," replied the police officer ushering him towards the patrol car outside.
Thursday, November 8, 2007
Monday, November 5, 2007
I grabbed a taxi home again since my Dad wasn't going to be home until close to midnight. I got another fantastic taxi driver whom I've decided to wait until a later blog post to write about. (Because I have been keeping a journal of all the taxi drivers that I have met over the past few years of using their transportation services. And since my use of them is coming to an end shortly, I decided to blog about my experiences, each and every one of them, in order to make my Ode to the Taxi Driver: My Long Lost Salvation)
Once I got home, my roommate was already up and in the kitchen with one of her friends making a "penis cake", that is, a cake shaped like a penis. Along with chocolate "penis pops", that is, chocolate molded in the shapes of penises on sticks. You know, to suck. (Okay, okay, enough of the sexual innuendo.) She was preparing these little "fun treats" for the bachelorette party the next night for one of her friends who is to get married in the next couple of weeks.
Gen-gen gave me a holla on my phone and said that he and Alex were set for a night out on the town. One, because her parents were out of town and two, because Gen-gen got his parents to watch the dog for a weekend. So he could party, of course. It was not my intention to really PAR-TAY, but I would be stupid if I didn't admit that every single time Gen-gen and I go out, insanity ensues. Craziness.
Well, Gen-gen headed over to my place. I excused the mess, because just like Goosey, I am not particularly a slob or messy persay, it's just that I tend to lay things here and there throughout the week because I am too exhausted to put them away in their place. So I wait until Friday night to put everything away to let the week start out nice and clean. Except that when Gen-gen came over, I hadn't gotten a chance to motivate myself yet.
He fell onto my bed and then lay there as I walked around trying to get ready. He asked me how my week went - which led to another conversation, that led to a delightfully wonderful conversation and revelation (which will end up being the next post).
We head out to Mosaic with Alex and two of her friends. This Filipina girl whose name I didn't catch and her boyfriend, I (To keep anonymity). Let me talk about I for a second - this man had to be double the age of the Filipina girl (who looked like she couldn't be any older than 24 or 25). Not only was I older than the hills in age, but he was older than the hills in dress, mannerisms and...well, absolutely everything. There's a difference between a person's age and then a person acting and dressing, and being consumed by that number. I was one of these people, evidently.
He is Russian (of course, right? Gen-gen and Alex are.) and he has this very creepy look about him. The kind of perv, I would take girls into dark alleys that are half my age look. The "I am Soviet, hear me roar!" kind of look. Not only that, but he began dancing, if that's what you would want to call it. I don't even think all the dictionary knowledge in the word could help me describe to you how terribly horrible this man was at dancing. Think about the stiffest dance you could possibly think of - add in a little bit of attempt to roll your hips - except instead of rolling them in a sexy way, you're literally plummetting them into the side of your dance partner awkwardly. All the while your right arm is pressed in the air bent at the elbow while your right leg is up and you're trying to do some half-Funky chicken dance. Except that "The Chicken Dance" isn't playing: "This Is Why I'm Hot" by Mims is. Yes, it was that bad, people.
Okay, now that I've gotten that out of my system...
After the club, Alex and Gen-gen and I headed back to his place. I noticed a missed call around 11:30 from my mom. She never calls that late. She's never up that late. So I called my VM and listened to the message.
My Dad had come home from work at Nordstrom's with a horrible pain in his side, puking all over the place and just feeling incredibly lousy. He had decided to head to the ER at St. Joe's and my aunt had agreed to take him. They had found a kidney stone about 3 milimeters inside of his kidney. She wanted to let me know that we weren't going to be going to my nephew's birthday party the next day.
Since it was so late, Gen-gen let me crash in his guest room. I had passed out on his couch a few hours before and woke up around 4:30 AM, and walked up to the guest room and collapsed out on the bed.
Around 7:00 AM my phone goes off. I wake up and with sleepy eyes gloss over the screen of my cell while hanging out of the bed. I can barely make out the numbers but they look like my parents' house number. I picked up the phone.
"Hello?" I attempted to force myself awake but sitting all the way up and rubbing my free hand against my eyes.
"Em, your father is missing," came the clear, yet shaking voice of my Mom.
"What the f$%k?" was the first thing that came out of my mouth. I was wide awake now. "What are you talking about, Mom?"
"Your father is gone, he's missing. I called over at the hospital just two minutes ago and the nurses station said he was discharged at 4:20 AM this morning. But he never came home," came my mother's voice from the other side of the line. It came over with an eerie calmness, the kind that let you know that she hadn't let the news sink in yet - but that she was overwhelmed enough to know she needed someone to talk to.
"Well, wait - he never called you or anything? He couldn't have left the hospital by himself," my mind was racing to try to find some logical explanation as I tried to stay calm for my mother's sake.
"No...he never called. He never said anything. In fact, I had talked to him right before I left you that voice message last night and he said he was going to have to stay overnight there to try to get the kidney stone out. That was the last I heard of him. I don't know what else to do," she said.
"Have you called C?" C is my oldest brother whose a cop in Harford County.
"No but I am going to, he'll know what to do about these things." My Mom is the kind of person who thinks that a person's occupation makes them the Einstein-know-it-all of anything and everything related to that occupation. Since my brother is a cop, my mother felt that there had to have been some special "way" of talking to police officers for missing persons, so she enlisted my brother's "expertise".
Two minutes later, I get another call.
"C is out calling the police, looking for your father," she said.
"That's great. They'll find him, I know they will Mom."
"...I think he might have committed suicide."
I didn't know what to say. I don't even know whether I was quite awake enough right before she said it - but I certainly fully awake after it was said. I had been so calm, so collected just several miliseconds before and now, in an instant, I felt the lump of fear clump itself into the back of my throat, forcing me to forget to breathe and let all the effort of breathing go into creating hot stingy tears that wasted no time occupying my eyes.
"I really think that's what he did," she said, "He's been just so happy recently. Even your sister has noticed."
I couldn't tell you what I thought of that comment because I was too caught on what she had said prior to that. Suicide? My Dad had been extremely happy recently - but I figured it was due to what he kept saying - that he had finally found a decent medication that helped to keep a constant and steady control on his once fluctuating moods. He didn't feel so up and so down anymore. He felt like he had a better control over his daily situations that would have normally caught him in a frenzy in the past. I had been so happy for him - why couldn't she be? Why did that have to be a "sign" that he would take his life?
And suddenly, like a flashback from a movie, I was taken back to middle school, and even just two years ago. Saw the vision of my father collapsing onto his knees in the bedroom, my mother standing over him with a menacing glare, his body so limp, so lifeless...and then the look on his face - so incredibly draining just to look at the expression on his face. I remember feeling my heart sink into the pit of my stomach to the point that I felt the thump as it hit the inner foremost wall of my stomach cavity. And yet even with my belly full, I felt so empty and helpless at the sight of my father so weak like that. Weak beyond anything anyone should ever feel at anytime. I could hear his voice just as I did two years ago, "I can't do this anymore...I can't do this anymore. I just don't want to live anymore..."
I choked back the tears and caught myself from sinking deeper into the past.
"No, Mom. He was fine, he is fine. He was so happy the last time I saw him. We'll find him. I am coming home now. Just relax. Do not scare the kids," I said, pulling the covers off and stepping into the chill of the guest room.
That man who was the man I saw two years ago was not the same man I saw a few days ago singing along to Carrie Underwood on the radio, I kept thinking.
Despite my best efforts, once I hung up the phone with my Mom I felt the tears start to flow and just let them flow. If there is anything that I have learned in the past few months it is to let the emotions I have out when I have them - holding them in is only going to prolong and worsen the pain later on.
I text J, a little freaked out still. J agreed with me - that my Dad would be found, that he wouldn't do something like that, and that my Mom was probably just overreacting as always. For Dad's sake, I hoped to God she was just being overdramatic like always.
I woke up Gen-gen and he took me over to my parents' house, all the way supporting me as I kept talking out loud to myself about my parents, about how much they have always been flitty in the past but no matter what, even if it was against my better judgement, I was always there for them. I have always been there when they needed me...even if it wasn't reciprocated.
We drove up to my parents' house and Gen-gen offered to come in with me but I told him that he didn't have to worry about it - and could just go home and get some rest for the both of us. As we were pulling into the neighborhood, we past a police car exiting as we were entering.
Once I got to the front door, my brother called me to tell me they had found him. He was already at the house down in the basement, and my Mom was sitting in the kitchen.
I suddenly let out a deep breath. It felt like I had been holding my breath that entire time and just at that moment had finally let it all out.
Standing in that kitchen, I stood there looking from my Mom, to my older brother, and then all around at my little brothers and my younger sister and realized then that sometimes it's tragedy that brings us back to reality.
As the police escort arrived to at the front door, I didn't hesitate in giving my Dad the biggest never-ending hug I had ever given him, never wanting to let go.
Tuesday, October 30, 2007
Thursday Night (of last week): Made sure to leave work right at 5 pm to get over to FFCU on Bel Air Road. (Because that's the location that my coworker, Code Name: F. Sanchez used to work at and had given me a friendly connect by being able to drop her name there.) Once I got there, I nervously sat and waited for someone to call on me in the line. What about credit unions made me think of them as forbidden secret societies? As if the word "union" constituted that I must work at a place where I get a special secret coded name tattooed on my ass and a name badge that had access into government facilities. And then, one day, while conversing with Code Name: F. Sanchez about car loans, she informed me that I, little ole me, could hold an FFCU account. Is it because of my newly G.I. Jane haircut that made me a formidable opponent as a secret agent (if not for skill, just for the mere fact that it has made me look like one tough motha sucka)? Or could it be the fact that I know her, Code Name: F. Sanchez and she is part of their covert society based on former FFCU workers who meet and have lunch at some posh restaurant every Thursday?
Alas, no, it is because I am a student, she tells me. A God-damn student?! What's so effing special about that? It's THAT easy to be a member of FFCU? Well, Jesus, I thought, I should go in and apply for a car loan.
And that's just what I did. And I was told that I would have to wait for the response. (which I received and will talk about in another post in the near future, if I ever get my ass back on blog schedule.) What bugged me the most was that my mother showed up at the last minute. Now, understand, she had to show up sooner or later because she was my ride, but she sat there so quietly, not asking any questions, even though the whole point of her being there was for her to ASK QUESTIONS. My God! I guess she forgot to put that on her list of things to do.
Friday: God, I wanted this day to be over so badly. Not just because I was excited about going to see Carl Cox @ Buzz (which I was) but because my week had been ridiculously packed with endless projects, and never ending piles of financial yada and bullshit. The more and more I stay at the this job, the less respect I have for people who have money and flaunt it. I can't tell you how many times in the past week I have had customers keep me on the phone, complaining about how much money they have and how much they had to spend in cash for their $22.6 million home in Milan. Blah, blah, blah.
Friday night: I rushed home from work and immediately tried to clean up my room, get my laundry done and get into my costume for the party. I was going as a schoolgirl. I even bought the sexy pantyhose that only come up thigh-high. Oh yeah, baby. But then I realized at the last minute that I had gotten rid of my black boots and only had brown ones to wear. Well, that wouldn't work. But I didn't really have time to worry about that. J was to be over any minute (close to 8) and I wanted to have the place cleaned up from my work week (because I have a tendency to throw things everywhere during the work week because I come home too exhausted to do anything but sleep) so that he had a place to nap. By this time, as exhausted as I felt, I was too filled with excitement for the party - and I was up and raring to go.
He showed up close to 9. Collapsed on my bed, and the sucka was out like a light. And despite my award-winning cleaning skills, I had failed to get the text that he had sent just minutes before telling me that we probably weren't staying at my place this weekend. All that work for nothin'. Well, at least the room looked pristine to my satisfaction for the most part.
I had the TV running while he was sleeping and I decided to finish getting dressed. Now was the time to focus on the fact that I didn't have matching boots. So after trying different variations, I finally gave up and just threw on a pair of jeans, and a black laced tank top and a black hat and a matching sweatshirt and was done. I put my make-up on and then checked the time. It was close to 11.
I woke up Sleeping Beauty and we were off. And of course, like always, while I was sitting in the car driving there I started to get sleepy - meanwhile, J got wide awake. So by the time we got there, I was exhausted again and he was energized like the pink bunny.
God, was it fun!! I got to see D - who hadn't seen the G.I. Jane look yet. He pulled me aside and admitted to me that he was never worried from the start - due to my "great bone structure" I think is what he said. It was really loud - but then he pulled away and motioned towards my cheek bones, so I think that's what he meant. I love that my guy friends are the kinda dudes that pay attention to things such as "great bone structure". It really meant a lot to me. He kept telling me that it looked great. Probably because D knows I am the type of person that needs to be told a bazillion times.
J got to see his friend J-man. Although J-man's friend was gettin' a little frisky with me. It was flattering in the beginning - you know, the kind words, the look up and down. You ladies know what I'm talking about! Especially when you're not feeling like you have your A-game on (I mean, yes, I took the hat off for the whole night, so it was the first night out as G.I. Jane in a club) and some dude says you're hot. That's always nice to know. But not when they come from behind and get all freak-a-leek on the sides of your body and then crouch down low like they are in a constipated squat trying to press their face close to your booty. Oh, hell no. Not cool.
D caught it though. D saved me! He went to J-man and told J-man I was his sister, and I was kinda "involved with someone" and I didn't want to be touched like that. That was pimp, D, very pimp of you. Much appreciated, my friend.
There was some other creep later on with some massively large and seizure-infested lit glow sticks that was running around and then trying to hit on me and Esther-unni while we were sitting on one of the blocks. J saved us then. Yay J!!!
I was happy to run into Eugene and Kuya EARL!!! Even though Kuya Earl was f*cked up, he recognized me and rubbed my head "for good luck". Asked me how I was doing, and gave me a big big hug. He told me all about what was going on with his family as he always does. I felt like I was part of that family at one point - so he knows I still care. Until he gets to Corp. He suddenly said that Corp was in the market to buy a house in Towson. He started working for Sinai as some sort of respiratory something and had been asking about me. Kuya said he didn't know because he didn't know. J is convinced that Corp is trying to find me. I don't think so ... I think he gave up on me a long time ago - just like I gave up on him before that. Regardless, it was nice seeing Kuya - even though this is the upteenth time I have seen him out WITHOUT a girl!! Hmm... (I have my thoughts about that)
Ohhhh, before I finish Friday night's expo - I gotta point out one thing that really GROUND MY GEARS!! This dumbass piece of no-good white trash of a bouncer (I don't know your name, and you better be so glad I don't) that works at Buzz... for the past few times that I have gone there, he has always been the one who checks my ID. So when he checks it, and I get up there, he takes the ID and he stands there for a good two minutes - moving his eyes from the card, to me, to the card, back to me. Giving me this "I'm a bad ass motha f&cka" look with these piercing eyes and these pursed lips. The first time it happened, I got scared. Second time, annoyed. Third time, pissed off. This time? I looked this motha f&cka right in the eye. IN THE EYE. Try to tell me that's not me, stupid ass. So I shaved my head, bitch - go get some glasses. I didn't have any plastic surgery. It's the same person. Grrrrrr!!! Then he has the audacity to ask me "Do you have any cards on you with the same name?" WTF?! You want my passport? You want to check if I am a legal citizen while you're at it? Grrrrrr!!! I showed him my credit card and then he finally let me in. That bastard... I swear. One more time and I will probably be banned from the club forever for kicking the living shit out of him.Saturday day/night: Right after Buzz, we all left together. Gen-Gen begged me and J to come to his place (because we didn't go the last time) so we headed over there with the code to his garage door. When we got there, Gen-Gen asked us to take Elvis (his puppy) out. In the rain. In the cold. At 3 or 4 in the morning. Yeaaaahhh...
We did, but Elvis only seemed to want to piss. So we went back inside and waited for Gen-Gen. Thirty minutes pass by - no Gen-Gen. This is where it gets hazy for me. I know we were there for what seems like a while. I remember laying on Gen-Gen's comfy white couch and collapsing... I remember seeing the dog jumping all over the place and J sitting in the chair adjacent to me. How long we were there, I have no clue. J said I started talking inaudibly again...hehehe. Oh well. We all have our moments.
Finally, I just remember J grabbing my hand and telling me we were getting out of there because Gen-Gen was never coming after all.
The rest of the night was AWESOME!! It was just great to hang out with J and be goofy, retarded people. Talk about everything and anything, sing karaoke until we have no voices left, listen to music and make commentary... (he still won't let me live up that damn discussion we had about Irony) it was just really relaxing.
Sunday: I woke up wishing it were Saturday and that weekend wasn't over. But it was Sunday, and we were too tired to do anything but lay in bed, eat something, and then go back to sleep. We did stop at Target really quick so we could pick out a gift for lil Drew. I told him to buy the Duplo (because what kid doesn't like Legos?) but J was thrown off by the fact that the set came with a Duplo cat and he insisted that we not make Drew "sissy"...so instead, we opted to get some some mini cars and trucks (which J dubbed as "manly"). I was so impressed with J's coordinating skills!! He got a blue bag and then got a card that said Happy 2nd Birthday with a dump truck on it! (I am sucker for wrapping gifts with a unified theme and I guess it rubbed off.)
J dropped me off at home, and he headed to the party. I saw the pics on LP's site - looked sooo cute!!! I collapsed in bed, and then woke up to work on Chemistry. And then found that my phone was seriously missing. J called me at work later on to let me know I had left it in his car.
Friday, October 26, 2007
Despite my initial disappointment that the shaved head didn't increase my walking speed just by sheer removal of weight, (hey, you know, hair can be heavy. Weight transfer applies to cars - why can't it apply to humans?) I have had this sudden boost of self-confidence, and feel so incredibly lifted and at ease. At this point, I don't think it will make a huge difference with me whether my hair continues to grow or whether the growth stops here. I feel like I've gained my old-self back and it's such a f*cking amazing feeling.
When I look back at just a few months ago, sitting up at T & S's till the early morning, and being so terribly frightened of losing all my hair, and then I look at the me now, it's like a huge transformation. The thing I was scared of the most in the beginning ended up being the one thing that has placed me back on the high self-esteem map!
So I got this new look, and along with it this encouragement to wear make-up every day. (Where before when I left the house and was feeling lazy I would throw my hair into a ponytail and not worry about my face at all. Maybe if you were lucky you'd see me at around noon taking out my eyeliner and smudging a line in my cubicle mirror with an added finish of lip gloss.)
In addition to the added interest in make-up and experimenting with funky colors, I suddenly realized that my old wardrobe of T-shirts and jeans doesn't jive with this haircut at all.
At this revelation, I find myself asking the age old question:
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
I know that if I had waited to cut it any longer that I probably wouldn't have - or at least I would have put up a good fight. But the fact that it was 3:30 AM or so, and J and I had just gotten home from Fur, and the fact that I was feeling particularly "happy", he just caught me like a deer in headlights.
No sooner had I taken off my "club clothes" and hopped into my PJs was J romping into my room and grabbing his duffel bag.
"You want to cut your hair now?" he asked, holding the bag for his razor in one hand and standing there in my doorway, giving me the look that said he was asking, but knowing full well he was going to cut it anyway regardless of my answer.
"Now? Like, right now?" I asked.
"Yeah, it's best anyways. You can take a shower afterwards since you've been out all night, and then it'll be easier to clean up the hair."
An exasperated sigh ensued, "Okay, I guess you're right."
No sooner had I said okay, J was in the bathroom unzipping and making a lot of racket.
By the time I walked into the hallway and towards the bathroom door, he already had his hair trimmer plugged in and ready to go, all set up nice and neat like a mini barber shop.
He opened up the toilet seat and had me hang my head over the bowl, and I stared at the clear toilet water with suspense as I heard the constant buzz of the hair trimmer in his hand once he clicked it on.
And then it was done. I remember standing up and staring into the bathroom mirror, rubbing my hand over the top, and turning my head left and right to admire his handywork.
Since I have been "G.I. Jane-d" it is like a huge weight has been lifted off of my shoulders. I have found this sense of freedom that I never thought imaginable. Weird, I know - that it would all come from just shaving a bit of hair off, but truly, honestly, it really has opened up this whole new source of positive energy for me.
I guess I never realized (until I shaved it off) how much the remnants of my "old" hair was really weighing me down. It was forcing me to be critical of myself, and forcing me to be judgmental because every time I looked in the mirror, those pieces were a constant reminder of what I used to have.
Plus, the long hair in those random areas matched with the patches of Chia-pet fuzz (that's what I call the little baby hairs that are slowly growing in my bald spots) everywhere was just daunting to look at.
And what's awesome about this haircut? 15-minute showers. 10 minutes to get dressed. I love it. No fuss with the hair, no curling irons, no blow dryers. Me, my fuzzball of a head and a nice outfit. Boom. Done.
Friday, October 19, 2007
How freakin' awesome is that? Once I took the wig off, and showed him how much progress my hair growth has been making - he even said that he was super happy with the Dritho-scalp and the results.
The attending today was kind of a dick. I don't know - it seemed like he would ask me a question and then look more at Dr. B than at me...which kind of irked me a little bit but hey, those attendings can't all be winners!!!
It doesn't matter anyway - the "dick" agreed with Dr. B and I that my hair was definitely growing back and that I should continue on the Dritho-scalp.
Dr. B asked me how long I had been leaving it on for (since the last time they had seen me they told me to try to leave it on for up to two hours). I kind of confessed that I had done some experimenting on my own and had pretty much been leaving it on my head for 4+ hours and just sleeping with a hair cap on my head with the medicine all on my scalp. I figured that it wasn't irritating my scalp to the point of no return, and why not leave it on for the maximum amount to see if it works any faster? I guess it did!! (hehe)
So the end result is: keep doing what I'm doing and they will see me back in two months!! YAY!!!!!!
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
So yesterday was my first day in wig-wearing glory. The night before was when I had purchased it from the wig store on Taylor & Loch Raven (The one that everyone who I had talked to always raved about.) which turned out to be a very less emotional experience the second time around.
Ever since that first time in the wig shop, I had realized that I wasn't fully ready as much as I thought I was. I don't think that I had fully accepted who I was without the wig, even though I truly thought I had moved on from that, until I hung out at my friend Scott's house a couple weeks ago.
Scott is a DJ. Well, he just started and his first "true" gig was at XS the other night. So I tagged along with a group of people to show some support. After the restaurant closed, we decided to head over to Scott's house to have some food and some mojitos.
This was the first time that these guys would see me the closest I have ever been to being bald. And what was even cooler was that previously that night, when Jolee came to pick me up from my house, I just ran down the steps with no hat on, with nothing to answer the door.
I don't know what compelled me to do that, but I was really glad that I had. I think it was just time. That and a high disregard for not having enough time to put a hat on. Irregardless of what the reasons were behind it, if any, I answered that door with my dome completely exposed.
I think half way through my walk up the steps once they started to follow me into the house it hit me that I was bald and I felt my heart skip a beat. But by that time I had already committed myself - so I just went with it.
It felt so incredibly freeing. I mean I have read so many posts from people talking about how they revealed their bald heads to the world - and how it felt so freeing but I never thought I'd ever feel it to the extent that I felt it. It was like freedom had come to fruition.
So it wasn't any surprise that later on, while at Scott's house, I suddenly just lifted the hat off my head - and sat there on the couch, continuing on my conversation with Godfather Sage - with no hesitation whatsoever.
And that was it - that was the point where I knew it was time to get the wig. I know it sounds sort of backwards really, why would I be getting a wig just now as I am becoming completely comfortable with being bald? Why cover up that free feeling?
Well because when I first went to the wig store that's exactly what I was doing. Covering up my embarrassment. My shame, my horror, my fears, and my sadness. That wig was doing everything that I was too scared to do - to just face my fears and the truth of it all and embrace it. That's why it wasn't time. That's why I was so consumed with sadness and emotional turmoil.
But now that I am free. Now that I know I am comfortable with being bald - just walking around my house, going to sleep, taking out the trash, exercising - now that I know that, I can now go to the wig store and buy that wig because I WANT to, not because I feel I NEED to. A wig is not something a person should NEED. It should be something a person should WANT. And that's what I wanted to feel. That's what made it the right time for me. Because I knew at that point, the wig wasn't going to hide anything that I hadn't already come to accept. The wig is my play time, my fun time... it is my ability to express that inner crazy self that leaps out in so many other ways - why can't wig wearing be one of them, too?
Monday, October 15, 2007
Do I feel confident? Hell no.
Do I care? Kinda, sorta.
I'm in one of those downbeat days. The ones where you dress up nice to make up for the fact that you feel like absolute crap.
I feel like I am losing grip on everything. And that honesty might not always be the best policy for me. I tend to just say how I feel and not think about what other people are going to think or how they might react. And then it always backfires with them getting angry, or frustrated.
I need to find a happy medium with what I let come out of my mouth ... or some really strong duct tape.
It's a shame 'cause he has to go home
This boy got to work, got to sweat
just to pay what he gets to get left all alone
Well let's step outside, let's go for a ride just for a while
Oh we won't get caught, well that's what I thought
until we cried
I'm still here
but it hasn't been easy
I'm sure that you had your reasons
I'm scared of all this emotion
For years I've been holding it down
For years I've been holding it down
This girl tries her best every day
but it's all gone to waste cause there's no one around
This girl, she can draw, she can paint, likes to dance,
she can skate - now she don't make a sound
We'll play in the park, till it's too dark for us to see
We'll make our way home, with mud on our clothes,
she won't be pleased...
I'm still here
but it hasn't been easy
I'm sure that you had your reasons
I'm scared of all this emotion
For years I've been holding it down
And I love to forgive and forget
so I'll try to put all this behind us
Just know that my arms are wide open
The older that I get the more that I know
Well it's time to let this go...
I've got to let it go, I've got to let it go
I've got to let it go, I've got to let it go
I'm still here,
but it hasn't been easy
I'm sure that you had your reasons
I'm scared of all this emotion
For years I've been holding it down
And I'd love to forgive and forget
So I tried to put all this behind us
Just know that my arms are wide open
The older I get the more that I know...
And I'd love to forgive and forget
So I tried to put all this behind us
Just know that my arms are wide open
The older I get the more that I know
Well it's time to let this go
-"This Boy" by James Morrison
Saturday, October 6, 2007
As I walked through the doors, for no reason at all, I choked up. I'm still not quite sure where that came from - I didn't realize how nervous I was subconsciously until I immediately was faced with rows and rows of plastic heads covered with wigs.
It was overwhelming, and almost like walking through a Halloween store for me. None of them looked like me. I kept reminding myself that this wasn't for a costume anymore, this was for the real deal. I suddenly realized that I could easily make a wrong decision and it might end up looking hideous and ridiculously out of place on my head. I also suddenly realized that maybe I wasn't as ready as I thought I was, emotionally.
I don't know how to explain this to anyone so that they might fully understand. There are plenty of people out there who buy wigs; according to some of my girlfriends, it is becoming a popular trend among celebrities even. It's not an unusual practice, and just by wearing a wig, it isn't going to mark me as a freak. BUT...
this is new to me.
It didn't matter to me that there were about twenty people already in the store roaming around and trying on extensions and wigs. It didn't matter that they had rows and rows of hair products and a hairstylist section where you could sit down and have the wig shaped and cut to your liking after you had purchased it.
What hit me first was walking past the longer hair wigs. The ones that reminded me of what my hair used to look like. I think that because I have lived with this patchy baldness for the past two months already that I had grown accustomed to how it looks in the mirror. It wasn't until I approached the long haired section that I started to tear up. I touched the frayed ends of what is remaining of my hair now and realized that I almost couldn't remember what it felt like to have long hair. I almost couldn't remember what it was like to pull it back into a ponytail when it got humid and it used to stick to the back of my neck. I used to hate that, and it irritated me to the point of no return.
I would give anything to feel my hair press against my sweaty neck like that now. Anything.
That frightened me. I could barely remember. What did I look like? Why didn't I appreciate it more than I did when I had it? Did I really use to have those wispy bangs? Was I really able to have cute curls at one time? It might seem like I am clinging too much to a painful past, but I know for a fact that I never want to forget what that felt like. What it looked like. Because I know I have to keep the dream alive that I will get back to that girl again, for my own inner strength purposes.
My life seems to be filled with these complicated situations recently where I am flooded with an abundance of mixed feelings and emotions. Wanting and not wanting things, in particular.
A part of me was excited, hopeful, wanting to try every single wig on. The other part of me kept saying it wasn't time yet, emotionally, I just am not ready.
The girl who was walking around spotted me and came over.
"Do you need any help with anything?" she asked, with a smile, "Do you want to look at the wigs?"
"Well, yes, but I don't know where to begin. This is my first time in a wig shop. Do you have human hair and synthetic?"
"Yes, we have both. Human hair is marked with green tags, and synthetics are pink tags," she said, pointing to the rows on the wall.
"What is the main difference between the two, would you say?" I asked, nervously biting my lip. The longer I looked, the more the collection of wigs seemed to grow.
"Human hair can be styled with heat, and curled. The synthetic wigs cannot," the girl said, still smiling.
"Well, I noticed over there while looking at the longer hair ones that they were held on with a comb. Do you think that you have ones with Velcro holders?" I asked.
"The back comb ones? Well all of them come with the Velcro option. You just buy one of the hair wig nets and place them on first and then they connect with the top of the wig," she said picking a random wig off one of the plastic heads to show me.
My eyes widened a little at the unexpected move of how easily she pulled the wig off that plastic head. A minute ago it looked like an Asian woman's head with a nice full head of hair styled with girls, and now the hair lay in between her hands, lifeless. She turned it over to show me the inside.
"Do you see the clip here? You can adjust the inside so that it fits tighter on your head. Like a bra strap," she said as she unhooked the little piece inside of it and moved it over one to the next hook holder.
I nodded, "That's exactly what I was wondering. It's just that I have alopecia ...and I don't think I have enough hair to hold the back comb ones down."
I have gotten used to saying that word. I tried to incorporate it into my vocabulary so I wouldn't choke up anymore at the sound of it.
She nodded and didn't seem affected at all by my blunt statement of my abnormal-ness. What had taken me months to say outright in a few seconds, this girl took as a grain of salt. It's amazing how some stuff works like that.
After a short pause she walked back over and placed the wig back on the plastic head.
"So do you want to try one on?" she smiled.
No, no, no, said the inner me, it's too scary, it's too real. You're bald. You're bald. This is fake hair. Fake.
"Yes," said the outer me.
"Good, I'll be right back with a fresh wig cap," she said disappearing into the back.
In the middle of the wig section was a table and a swivel chair on one side and a stationary chair on the other. On top of the table with a big mirror.
The girl returned with a black sock-looking thing.
"Here," she said handing it to me, "Just put it on your head."
I stood in front of that mirror and slowly removed my hat. In the fluorescent lights of the store, my discolored scalp and bald spots looked red, irritated and enormous. I quickly stretched out the cap and placed it on top of my scalp and tucked in the ends of my hair.
"Alright, please pick out one that you'd like to try," the girl said once she saw the cap on my head.
I still was trying to get used to what I looked like with the black cap on. I turned around and looked up at the rows and rows of wigs.
After a few minutes of staring like a kid in a huge toy store, I looked at the girl with a nervous smile and laugh.
"I have no idea what I like... I want it to look real. I don't want it to look..." my voice dropped off. Mainly because the word I was looking for was 'wig'. Which was unavoidable at this point.
The girl gave me a kind of look. "Well, they are wigs. Just chose the style you want. Have fun with it."
I went to the other side of the plastic heads and stared at the row of mid-length hair pieces.
My eyes caught onto a mid-length black one with brown streaks. It caught my eye because it reminded me of the color of my hair before.
"Can I try that one on?" I asked, pointing to it.
"Of course," said the girl walking over to it already. She leisurely lifted it from the plastic head and motioned for me to sit in the swivel chair in front of the mirror.
I watched as she played with the "bra straps" of the wig on the inside to make it fit my head.
She motioned to the mirror to indicate for me to look into it while she placed the wig on my head for me.
I watched as she stretched the front on first, adjusting the hairline so that it fit on my head in the correct position. She reached underneath and towards the nape of my neck to straighten out the back of the wig.
And then she proceeded to comb it.
It was the weirdest, surrealist feeling I had ever felt before. I almost didn't want to look into the mirror because up to that point I had been staring at the table top.
When I lifted my eyes, I couldn't believe how real it looked. But it wasn't my hair. I shoved that thought into the back of my mind and tried to focus on the wig itself, and how it looked on my head.
At first it felt awkward, but once I started running my fingers through it, I got used to its look. It had wispy bangs, which would need to be cut once I bought it because they kept swiping into my eyes.
"I think it looks perfect on you," exclaimed the girl, standing back as if to admire her handywork.
"You do?" I asked, "you know, I really like it, too..."
But I didn't buy it. I had to sleep on it.
When I got home later on, I sat in my apartment with a glass of black raspberry wine and scribbled for three hours into my journal.
Today, I think I'll go back to purchase it. It's a big step. And even if I go out and buy it, I am not sure when I'd wear it out - whether I'd be comfortable with wearing it out or whether I'd spend the entire night wondering if other people thought I was wearing a wig. Or worse - knew I was wearing a wig.
One step at a time though, right?
Wednesday, October 3, 2007
Okay, so as I was thinking before I was so rudely interrupted by this incompetent piece of crap for a computer...
I was just sitting here listening to my iPod while waiting for my Mom to decide to come and pick me up from school. It's 9:26 pm and I don't think she realizes the things that I still have yet to do tonight - I have to prepare my 6 minute speech for tomorrow about Korea. I also have to create the poster on poster board, and do my hair. I also have to go back to my apartment to pick out clothes so that I have something to wear tomorrow (I start my driving training tomorrow with the State and I am pretty nervous.). I have to do all of this TONIGHT. And yet she told me that I just have to hold on a minute and stay here a little while longer.
Thus why I am blogging while listening to my iPod.
Anyways, I just realized while sitting here and listening to some Phil Collins that he is totally the master of musical irony.
Listen to the beginning of "Throwing It All Away" by Genesis and you'll see what I mean. It starts out with such a happy melody, and then once you get into the song and really listen to the song, it's really kinda sad. Depressing, even.
I mean, take a listen to "Invisible Touch". I am sure all of you danced to it one time or another, but have you really ever listened to the lyrics? It's about a woman that he doesn't even know the name of, that he's never been with - and yet he knows he's in love with. It's basically about that desperation of loving someone you'll never be able to be near.
It amazes me how much Phil Collins is able to take a crap paddy and stuff it in a neat little box and tie it with a pretty ribbon. It becomes a crap paddy disguised as a gift. A pretty little neat package of feel-good toe-tapping beats, with sad, depressing and realistic lyrics tucked in between.
Oh Phil Collins, you genius, you. Thank God you're back on tour with Genesis. Genesis without you is like peanut butter and jelly without the jelly.
The Format - "I'm Ready, I Am"
I'm nicotine, I'm coming clean
I fooled the crowd when I made it sound
like I was more then ready
Strike up the band, deprive
My sleep cause there's no love like apathy
the bell that tolls rings loud enough
that it should have woke us up
I'm trying to find truth in words,
in rhymes, in notes, in all the things
I wish I'd wrote cause
I feel like I've been losing you
I read your last entry
over-privileged kids keep crying
the need to fit in is harder when living life from a screen.
old Classmates, please drop all your pens
don't write a word cause I wont reply
and I'm not bitter, no its just
I've passed that point in my life
I'm trying to find truth in words,
in rhymes, in notes, in all the things
I wish I'd wrote cause
I feel like I've been losing you.
Each night it ends too soon
you don't hold me like you used to
and your eyes look like they've seen too much.
Its always some excuse too tired,
too obtuse, you look so far removed,
this time I fear I'm losing you
I'm nicotine, I'm a cash machine
I'm the colour green and you should have seen
the looks I just received
I need a reason to let go an intervention,
a lullaby something to cure me
please believe me
I'm trying to find truth in words,
in rhymes, in notes, in all the things
I wish I'd wrote cause
I feel like I'm losing you.
Sunday, September 30, 2007
Once the first half of the morning was spent running a rampage through my parents' house with no success, I realized it had to either be my place or at work. I was praying for it to be at my place.
So I had my father drive me over, and I ran up the steps, trying to focus, trying to find that bag. Nope, no bag. But I grabbed another outfit to wear (since I was wearing sweats and I was headed to a study group later on at 1 pm @ Barnes and Nobles) and headed out the door.
That left the last place: my office. I've never been there on a Saturday - much less a Saturday morning. It's quite boring - and walking into the building left a weird feeling. There was so much silence, such a sense of emptiness that I felt - as if during the week the building's walls had been so pregnant with the full bustle of workers, diners at Della Rose's and customers perusing the spa on the 3rd floor and suddenly, once 5 pm Friday evening hit, the building was quickly emptied. Just like that. It felt like a foreign country - my sneaker steps echoing against the marble - and I suddenly noticed that three quarters of the main lobby were still unleased.
Well, I found my medicine. Thank God the security guard at the desk recognized me. I had taken my work badge just in case there might be trouble, but I also knew that it probably wouldn't do me any good anyway since all employee badges are programmed with timed access. (I had found this out one morning when my ride had to drop me off at 6 AM and I was unable to get into my office. I had a nice time sitting propped up against the wall until 7 AM rolled around.)
The security guard said that it was his day off, but he had been asked to come in anyway. I told him I just needed to grab my medicine, and that I thought I had left it in one of the drawers of my cubicle. I'm glad he went with me though - I tried to scan my badge at the door first, and it wouldn't let me in.
Medicine in hand, I ran out to the car, and headed back to my parents' house to take a shower and at least get ready for the study group. I desperately need this study group if I even want to stay afloat in this class.
The study group was set up to be at 1 pm. By 2 pm, I came to the conclusion that it had to have been cancelled and I had just not gotten the memo. When I tried to call my other classmate (the girl who put the study group together) her phone had been turned off. Awesome. I called the other classmate and he called me back to let me know that work had called him in at the last minute and he needed the extra money. I understand that.
I tried to study as much as I could by myself, but technically, the whole point of having a study group is so that you can feed off of each other's notes, and other people's knowledge on the concepts that you don't understand. When there are no other persons that kind of defeats the purpose.
I went searching through the self-help, self-teaching books in the science section and grabbed a copy of Chemistry for Dummies. It helped to a point - but at that point, my stomach was growling, and I had lost all interest and focus on trying to finish the homework that was due on Monday. Besides, I was finding it much more exciting to eavesdrop on the conversation occurring two tables over.
There was a woman dressed in what looked like flowery purple drapes. They looked satin from where I sat, but at any rate, they at least appeared soft. She had dark brown hair, below the shoulder, and had a pair of designer sunglasses on her head. Beneath the table, her matching purple toenails were exposed, and she was lightly sipping on her coffee while flipping through a notebook that she had laid out before her.
Suddenly, it seemed like out of nowhere, a couple appears in front of her and they are shaking hands and smiling cordially - but nervously. A first meet, no doubt.
The couple sits down at the woman's table and she begins speaking matter-of-factly. I think that's what intrigued me was her ability to speak with almost no pause, with so much factual tone - it was friendly but professional.
"I know you saw me from my website. You were the ones who emailed me. And I assume that you've had a chance to view the site and see all of the services that I offer. Were you able to check out the photo gallery? Those pictures have been from the past few years of my experience and should give you an idea as to what to expect from me," she said, while flipping more pages of that notebook.
The couple was just nodding their heads, silently. The woman was still gripping her purse on her shoulder - a sign of nervousness for most people.
As the conversation let on, it became apparent that this woman (the one with the purple flowery drape outfit) was a wedding planner and at the end of the conversation, the couple had both agreed that they would be employing her to help plan their wedding.
That was my cue to go. No other interesting things for me there to help distract away from the awful Chemistry homework that I had to do. I quickly packed up my things, placed the empty plate on top of the trash can (the previous home of a delicious turkey and 3-cheese melt on basil infused panini bread) and decided on taking a trip to the mall.
The mall is the same as I leave it - no matter how long I go without perusing its hallways. Which has been a long time. Possibly close to 7 months or so. I bought a few things, but mostly looked. Student loans and a pending auto loan is keeping me from spending too much nowadays.
I had originally planned on staying in all weekend long - but I had gotten a text message later on in the day from my friend Sal. He was headed to Trust (which is now Stadio). Usually, he tells me where he's going and I say 'cool' and stay home regardless.
Something about last night beckoned me out. So I put my medication on for two hours, walked around the apartment trying to clean up, and then took my shower to get ready.
I called the cab at around 9:30 pm. It didn't arrive until 10:15 pm.
The cabbies that I got were truly hilarious. As I climbed into the back, I noticed that there were two men sitting in the front. I was curious, but acted like nothing was out of place.
"200 East Redwood, please."
"Eh?" asked the driver loudly.
"The girl said 200 Redwood...East, right hon?" asked the other man as he turned slightly in his seat to face me.
"Yes, East. That's right." I now knew why there were two. One was the driver and the other was the driver's ears.
It took us forever to get down there. I didn't get to Redwood Street until close to 11 pm since Ears (my name for the second man) told the driver to take a wrong turn without listening to my protests. Finally, they were so exasperated by themselves that they suggested that I get out of the cab a block and a half from the 200 block of Redwood. I agreed, mainly because I didn't want to have a $50 cab fee.
I crawled out of the cab, and made sure to grab all of my things. As I closed the cab door, the driver leaned across Ears and rolled down the window.
"Hey, besides, what is a pretty young girl like you doing out here so late without your boyfriend?"
"No boyfriend. And I'm just trying to have fun and live my life," I said, "Thanks for the ride!"
The walk was short, but a walk nonetheless. As I neared the valets I pushed past the metal gates and up the front steps.
"This is Trust, right?" I asked for good measure since it had been more than a few years since the last time I'd been there.
"Uh - yeah, Trust - it's not that anymore. Stadio," said the bouncer with his hand outstretched for my ID.
That night was all about baby steps. I was all by myself, had gone with no one I knew - only with the hopes of running into Sal. And just my luck that it was lingerie night - so there were plenty of women with long hair and hoochie outfits to taunt me.
It was tough the first few minutes. I was conscious that I had my hat on, and that I didn't look like any of them. But then I snapped myself out of it - this wasn't the me a few years ago. This wasn't the vibrant girl that went to all the clubs just 5 years ago. Where did that girl go?
I marched up to the bar and flashed a smile. Grabbed my screwdriver, and headed over to the dancefloor.
I decided to just dance. Dance and have fun. That's just what I did. Baby steps, right?
Sal showed up later and kept telling me how I shouldn't be worried about how I looked because I was always going to be fabulous.
Overall, a fun night. Tiring though. I collapsed as soon as I got into the backseat of Sal's car.
Alright, time for me to sleep. Chemistry is kicking my ass. Chemical nomenclature needs to get bent.
Might I mention to my happiness that despite my self-consciousness of holding the edge of my hat all night to keep it from falling out that I was hit on five times by five separate men (all pretty decent looking, too.) I know that sounds shallow, but in a very small way it helps with the baby steps. I figure if random strangers don't notice anything unordinary, then I shouldn't be so worried about it either.