Lucy Is My Holder

Day 7

It’s Monday. After a tease of a warm weather weekend we woke up to slushy snow. Me? On this Monday? I’ve decided I want to chase elation. I want to stop typing my feelings for the day in my slices and reread after publishing only to find undertones of ache. I cling to quotes like “I think of death so much it feels more like a memory” and “I wanna be emaciated, I wanna hear one song without thinking of you” because they’re beautiful to me. Clever and bone baring. And, I think, I see me in there somewhere.

A friend visited from Northern California a couple weeks ago. I’d met her during, and actually because of, a particularly dark time in my life. In front of my kids, during this visit, she lovingly referred to me as “Emo Eddie” again and again and I flinched each time. Not at the moniker itself but at the implications of having that version of me shown to them. As if I could continue forever pretending they’ve not seen it themselves.

My first thought is to trace things back to before. When I was a carefree kid with crazy, ever changing hairstyles and colors and painted nails. Who, in my head anyways, always had people guessing who I’d take on as a persona that day based on my expansive thrifted wardrobe. Would he be an ironic preppie? A metalhead burnout? A Deadhead hippie? The sporty jock? All looks burnished with copious beaded jewelry and a look-at-me flair. But the more I dig into that time of supposed thirst for joy the more I remember it was walls and armor. That I wrote poetry in dark corners at night and in those moments found my only truth. The hopeless romantic self-flagellator just waiting…for tomorrow, meaning, today. For now, basically. 

I do it, actually. I chase elation. Maybe I need to chase something slower? The rapidity of elation seldom keeps me on the cliff from which the chase generally ensues. Even when I catch it there’s a fall. I patch myself up and keep chasing. Off cliffs. Into already bloodied by repeated attempts brick walls with cartoon trick tunnels, sometimes so crudely graffiti’d on there that I KNOW they’re mirage, yet I smash head and heart first in with the trust of a child. 

I reread this looking for undertones and see that something in me is proud. Like I’m some character in a play who will surely be finally seen by act 3, and accepted, by someone as a kindred something, all the way into a happily ever after denouement. When I was younger I thought I was so clever and edgy, telling people over and over, “It’s only life” when bad things happened. Now, I think there are much higher stakes. But are there? 

I choose to chase elation. I choose to believe in trust and that, eventually, when I fall it will actually be there. I will continue to put effort into my responsibilities and realize that my own happiness is no longer the most important thing in the universe. But I refuse to accept that it’s not important at all. I suppose the thing I need to change is not exactly what I do. I think I need to accept that. But if I’m going to continue parading around with my heart on my sleeve, I just need to stop letting it bleed on others and blaming them for the stains. 

“And oh, as I fade away

They’ll all look at me and say

They’ll say, ‘Hey look at him’

‘And where he is these days?’

When life is hard, you have to change”

4 thoughts on “Lucy Is My Holder

  1. You had me at Hamilton and then kept me while you chase elation. So many ways and places to chase elation and the self reflection through it all.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Love the self reflection throughout your piece. I never really thought about what the tone is in my writing. Is there evidence of a bit of sadness or anger? Things to think about. Loved the slice!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. As usual, your slices make me think so much. I love how you recognize your emotions and that you set out to change them. I always tell my students (and myself) you get to CHOOSE your attitude every day. And now I’m thinking of all the lyrics to the song you posted…and what a good song it is.

    Liked by 1 person

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