neutrophil projectile, up and out through the mouth
"Masterpiece" by Big Thief
Old stars, filling up my throat
You gave 'em to me when I was born
Now they're coming out
Laying there on the hospital bed
As an arrow, blue and red
Took a draw of breath and said to me
"You saw the masterpiece
She looks a lot like me
Wrapping my left arm around your right
Ready to walk you through the night"
Old friends, old mothers
Dogs, and brothers
There's only so much letting go
You can ask someone to do
So I keep you by my side
I will not give you to the tide
I'll even walk you in my stride, Marie
May 1, 2018 Tuesday 11:21 PM
I need to masturbate more. Since coming to school, I've masturbated less for the obvious reasons: a combo of daytime academia and having a roommate. I've masturbated a bit, sometimes to things I read but—surprisingly—more often to my own thoughts. It used to be that I had to have some sort of porn, but after meeting Moby, that changed. I would imagine him a lot, and that made it more comfortable an act for me—to not focus on myself and all my known flaws, but someone else whose flaws I wanted to accept. I've heard sex is a way of confronting fears. Maybe I was afraid of Moby and all he implied; but also I really liked him.
I don't really think about him like that anymore, but I also haven't really wanted to masturbate in a while. I think I masturbated last week (I always get the urge to masturbate right before I get my period), but before that I don't remember much ~masturbating~. Even after I made out with that guy at the party (which included heavy petting), I wasn't turned on. Well, I was wet, but my mind wasn't very into it.
I masturbated tonight to some porn but I found, like last week, it was kind of underwhelming, but still nice. When I masturbated more, and was allowed to take my time without feeling the ANXIETY of possible roommate presence, the orgasms were better. But I think I haven't really exercised my kegel muscles much in that way so they are out of practice. That, and I am kind of sick so it's hard to feel sexy and hard for my body to work up any sort of activity.
I do like post-orgasm. I feel nice. Kind of relaxed. Maybe I can love the letdown.
Today I walked to biolab and I realized I was 19. It's such a stupid realization, but it just hit me—that I'm not sixteen anymore. I'm not imagining getting out of high school, and getting out of my hometown, getting out of the loose-but-shadowed parental grip—again, I love them, but obviously had their problems which I am trying to come to terms with while I am away from them so that when I get back I won't be so. So. So angry. Anyway, it's not me speculating anymore, not me working within a little eggshell. I am here now, and I don't have to go home anymore. I don't need their permission for things. I even told my mom on the phone last week, that I was renting a sublet with my friend Goose and I said, "Separate rooms," and my mom replied, "Bero, you don't need to tell me, I trust you. You're an adult now." Which gave me mixed feelings, because on one hand I know I didn't have to tell her—I have NEVER had to tell her, I have never been the child subjugated by the parent. I have always been on equal footing with them. It is a good and a bad thing. Times like these, it's good. Times like then, maybe it wasn't, maybe I needed help and maybe they didn't offer it. Maybe they should've talked to me about Stephanie instead of letting it sit there, festering. We still haven't talked about it! Except for that brief confrontation with my dad in January, we haven't talked about it! What do they think happened? Do they think I am okay? (Yes, they do.) Am I okay? (Yes, I am.) Why am I so hurt? (I. Don't know.)
Maybe I should think about that another time.
Simple things like that, my mom can say—and they bother me. I don't know why until I think about it, and even then I am still confused. I think I'd rather be angry than not, I think I'd rather have pain than nothing. Then I think, this isn't a story, and I think again: I like those stories that are human and this is human. And I ask myself: but does it make you less human to be happy? To let it go?
I am 19. Against all last week's assertions that it is not significant, it feels like something important. Maybe I'm just shifting in my new skin, the slight change in identity. I am no longer "an eighteen year old girl from Upstate NY," I'm "a nineteen year old girl from Upstate." And next year I'll be a 20 year old from Upstate. And eventually I'll be in my thirties, and where will I be from then? Will it still be New York or will I have grown elsewhere? Will I be "a thirty year old woman living on the West coast"? Will it just be my temporary location? Will I call it home? Will I name myself a woman? I can't imagine myself ever being anything more than a girl. I've been called young lady, or young woman—never lady or woman by itself. But I guess that just means I can't imagine myself getting older.
Nineteen and in the sun and coughing her lungs up, this girl lives. She lives in a small state in her small world and even that is too big for that mind. Small, small, small, and crawling along in a singular direction and you all wonder: amazing, how it walks as if with purpose, as if with destination, as if following a map we can't see or hear or smell or taste. From grass onto blanket, and you let her crawl along until she gets too close to the food—then you flick her off and look away, can't even see her body flying through the air, don't see the way it lands on the soil, if it catches itself on its feet like a cat or if it rolls upon the exoskeleton.
I was able to be around Moby yesterday. I didn't actually feel like writing this down, because after it occurred I just—did not feel like writing about it. Which either means it did not feel important enough (I hope) or it was too important (please no). It was actually okay. We were mostly around Marie, but when we were alone we just made some small talk and I was fine with this. I want to be friends with him, but just not right now. It's enough for things to be—less weird. I just want him to look less avoidant in my presence, please. Maybe he is trying to dig himself out of sight, collapse like a neutron star for my sake, but I think it functions to isolate me just as well because we both know why why why.
Hopefully now it is fine. I felt a little weird after spending so much time with him yesterday and found he invaded my thoughts more, which was annoying and makes me ask myself: am I done with all that? And the thing is, I know I'm not. But I also know that I don't want to date him, and there is a good distinction between those things: liking him and wanting to be with him. Finally, the question to: "what would I do if he told me he changed his mind?" is genuinely a rejection. Mostly because it is inconvenient to resume this thing we had at the start of summer, and a little because I don't really trust him in a very minute—but important—way. I don't trust the things he says to me, about how he feels. To me, that is important, to be transparent as possible about feelings. I don't think he is that way, and so I think we likely would not be very compatible. I just don't trust that he could handle me and my emotional instability. I am very well-versed in therapizing the Self within (although of course there's always room for work), but sometimes I think Moby would want so hard to accommodate me (because he is nice to a fault) that he wouldn't realize until too late that he never really wanted that kind of baggage.
Yeah, so. Part of me still likes Moby. Makes sense. That's why I will try not to be around him too much, 'cause he kind of makes me sick with how human he is (by that I mean—I like the humanness of him, I like the parts of him that are boring or annoying or generally just not my favorite), and I want that to transfer into platonic-ness which I predict will occur over the summer, over muuuuch temporal and spatial separation, lol.
Seeing Moby also brought up my old daydreams, in which I argue about him about things he said to me in the process of rejecting me. I want to bury that.
Overall, I feel okay. I am warm and powerful. I've been struggling to write. Sometimes I worry I write more truthfully in here than I ever will in my fiction—which is not what I want. I would die inside if this was somehow more compelling than my made-up shit. I mean, I would like for this to not be terrible writing, obviously, but my trade is to communicate ideas and thoughts and a perspective of humanness without betraying directly everything that I am. I mean, I realize fiction writers leak through in their words, but it is different and more private (maybe one day I will elaborate on this). I am all about privacy (she says to her public diary). No, seriously, though I am. Despite this thing. I mean, who even looks at this? I am basically shouting into the void, but the idea that it can be accessed and read by eyes other than mine is cathartic. As long as these eyes are the eyes of strangers. And if they are the eyes of the Known, I should wish they'd let me know what they thought about all this shit in my head. Do they dislike me now? That they see the ruminations in action? The relentless waterwheel pushing of my thoughts, a recycling of old feelings. What has changed? Will I be okay with that change?
I keep thinking about my sister Caroline reading my diary, and I wonder what she thought of me—if she thought less or more, if I matched her mental image of Her Sister or if it threw her off. I wonder and I want to ask but I'm scared of the answer. I'm scared she'll nail me right between the eyes with an insight I never saw coming. Did I just mix metaphors? Idioms? (Same diff?) I can't tell.
This song (above) is about the death of a friend. Whenever I read Lucy by Jamaica Kincaid, I think of Elise and I become startled when I realize that Elise was a real person—not a character that I read in a book that I lost. She was a person, a real girl, who died when she was barely sixteen, and who wrote in this diary site like I do for as long as I have, and who had been miles ahead of me in her own way. I always forget. But Lucy reminds me of Elise in some ways, although I think Elise allowed for less cynicism. Not that I really know anymore. I am not sure I ever knew. She is dead now, and it is almost like she didn't exist, except she did because there are some reasons I am the way I am now and she is in there somewhere mixed up with Liv and Alexis and the sun from sophomore year of high school.
I am full of that sun, it is shining through my teeth and I will open my mouth for you to see into that dusty pink—that shadowless void—that well-lit pit. The sun as it slips down into my stomach. I'll cough it up in the morning, along with the neutrophils in my mucus, all up in chunks at the bottom of a sink and swirling down.