Even walls fall down

August 4, 2009 at 10:59 am (in my head)

The post I’d like to write would talk about how much I fear failure. How I let it hold me back. How I cling to being terrified as a way out, as a way around, as a way to stop right where I am.

Or it might talk about the time I denied myself a perfectly lovely, sincere invitation to an entirely charming, naughty party for two.

Or the time I didn’t.

It might list the three things I like least about myself (see #1 fear of failure above).

Or maybe I’d admit to a few things I like about myself instead, trying all the while not to sound like the prat I’m sure I’d be as I mentioned elegant ring fingers and above-average thoughtfulness.

Or I could explain why I hate buffets. The cafeteria feel, the implication that quantity supersedes quality, the reality that the food has waited hours or days to be consumed, the encouragement of binging and gorging and inhaling mediocrity.

I might discuss how I love to run my fingers over my collarbone, gently until I turn the corner at my shoulder and press firmly into the flat blade, relishing the solidity and strength of a healthy, whole body. How lucky I feel – how luck I AM – to be able to dance and breathe and pee without giving it much thought.

Or I’d titillate with tales of how bridges and cliffs and skyscrapers make me want to jump. Not because I have any desire to die, but because I’m thinking about the seconds I’d get to fly.

I might tell you that I’m still scared to walk down stairs, that I’ve always been scared of stairs, that when I finally fell down most of a flight, it felt more like oh, finally than wait, I did WHAT? It’s not heights that scare me (see wanting to jump above), it’s stairs specifically. And deer, but we’ve been over that.

I might admit to missing him. No, not him…or him. HIM. But definitely not him.

I could tell you how I realized only this morning that I need to either make money or marry whether I like it or not because I’m an only child and no one else will help me care for my parents when it becomes necessary.

I might try to put words to the excitement of driving a mountain road, hearing the engine over Tom Petty’s “Walls”, taking the turns a little too fast, and feeling more like myself than I have in weeks. How I briefly considered not stopping at all until I hit the Atlantic Ocean. How I briefly considered it half a million times during the course of the three hour drive. How I desperately miss spontaneity and calling from an hour out and being greeted with a shower already warm and running.

How I am trying to hold it together with little bits of nourishment here and there – a weekend in Tahoe with my parents, a long Ritzy weekend in Laguna Niguel with the girls, a planned evening with C, a day to work from home – when what I really need is something new, something big, something to shake off the restlessness that even strangers have begun to recognize.

But I’m not brave enough to write any of those posts. Not really. Not in the clear, soul-baring way they should be written. I’m too afraid I’d fail.

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10 Comments

  1. MJ said,

    Beautifully written post. If you won’t share those things here, I hope you are sharing them with someone, somewhere. It’s not good for the soul to keep thoughts like these bottled up….

    • BS said,

      Thanks. I’m sharing them with all the wrong people and a select few of the right ones. I’m not the type to hold things inside, even if I don’t always let them out on the blog.

  2. SoMi's Nilsa said,

    What a well-written, thought-provoking post. Do you gain a small sense of relief by putting those thoughts out there? Or do you really need to write the full post on each to have that feeling? Also, that thing about jumping? Sweets has that sensation, too. So weird, but I’m glad he’s not alone! =)

    • BS said,

      I really need to have one of those evenings where I share a bottle of wine with someone and talk it through more than I need to write the full post.

      I’m glad Sweets has that sensation too because now I’m not alone!

  3. Bridget said,

    “… what I really need is something new, something big, something to shake off the restlessness that even strangers have begun to recognize.”

    I swear you were inside my head when you wrote this post. I hope it helps to know you aren’t alone in your restlessness.

    Absolutely lovely post. I suggest skydiving… If you need someone to go with you, let me know. I’m in!

    • BS said,

      Skydiving might indeed help, but I was thinking of following the Bridget Method: wine and a cupcake.

  4. Peter DeWolf said,

    That’s a lovely post.

    You won’t fail.

    Write them.

    • BS said,

      Thanks, Peter. Promise you won’t point and laugh giggle in an oddly girlish way?

  5. amber said,

    I loved everything about this, especially: Or I’d titillate with tales of how bridges and cliffs and skyscrapers make me want to jump. Not because I have any desire to die, but because I’m thinking about the seconds I’d get to fly.

    I can only speak for myself, but I love your writing – it’s interesting and funny, and makes you seem like the sort of person I’d want to know, someone to laugh with over drinks.

    I’m afraid of failing, too, more than anything. Don’t let it hold you back. Better to try, and fail spectacularly, and have a story to tell.

    • BS said,

      Seriously, all of you are kind of making my week. I’d laugh with you over drinks anytime Amber.

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