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Throwing Roses in the Rain

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9/18/06 03:45 pm

Sometimes when I look that the people you really care about- the few that you actually give your whole heart to- I see in them the person I could have been, the person I would have liked to be. And I think that if I had turned out like that- confident and charismatic and (I hate to say it) conventionally pretty and driven- that perhaps things would have turned out differently.

9/14/06 12:37 pm - i won't be the first heart that you break.

When I was three years old, I decided I wanted to be a vacuum cleaner when I grew up. Now that I'm twenty I wish I'd stuck with that ambition. and so on cold, rainy twenty-year-old days I sit in a library armchair surrounded by books and articles that I somehow think will help me get through the nineteen hour work days after law school and I think how much easier it would have been to be a vacuum cleaner, and I glance down at the notebooks around me, debating whether to attack biopsychology or American woman poets or the ethics of martyrdom in early Christianity first, and before I realize it I'm psychoanalyzing the poets and poeticizing the martyrs and all I really want to do is rewind my rainy little book-filled life to the times when we could act like children- to the times when there was a "we" at all- to the dancing and the laughter and the safety, to a time i could smile without feeling guilty, and i think sometimes that if He had only known the nights I'd stood at that open third floor window staring out at the sky like I expected it to tell me I could stop trying to pretend I was a mercilessly independent attempt at over-achievement and step tentatively forward towards a figure with an outstretched hand and a heart too good for mine in the first place. But for the present, I smile at all the books and remember the hours I spent as a teenager sitting cross-legged in the aisles of the Waterloo Public Library reading The Letters of F. Scott Fitzgerald by fluorescent library light and praying no one would see me and I grimace and realize my face is flushed and my eyes are sad and i pray no one will see me and I write a few lines on the margin of my notes on the Geneva Convention about how I really do miss Him, and I wonder sometimes if the eyes I miss looking into now will be the same ones I will remember on quiet, lonely forty-year-old-lawyer nights on which I will resign myself to not sleeping and writing letters I know I will never send...

7/13/06 10:38 pm

I know I never write in here, but for some reason I wanted to write something that won't be held to the lined pages of a notebook that no one else will ever read...

I'm at Oxford right now- It's AMAZING, to say the least. I can't really describe it the way you can describe normal places, except to say that it is, in every sense of the word, gorgeous. My class is incredible, the people are amazing- It's been two weeks filled with Victorian literature and paper writing, with having the world's best roommate, drinking cherry beer at this pub called Copa, High Table and lectures and unexpected friendships and late night dance parties and British accents and I wish I could capture every moment of this, though I feel every day as if I don't deserve it. No one deserves a place like this.

5/17/06 01:02 am

it's a funny thing, being back here. Nice, though, to not have classes for a few weeks, save the gigantic Oxford reading list.

Myrtle was amazing- after a rather, uh, strenuous Friday and the traditional "Myrtle mass," the next few days brought shopping (!) and an infuriating game of Kings, visiting the seniors, and an attempt to go to the Spanish Galleon that ended up turning into a bonfire at Rach's, complete with Truth or Dare Jenga, Charley wearing Mariel's pink pants and jacket, a sorry attempt at belly dancing, an a very very long conversation that ended in me finally going to bed at...eh...8 am. And then there was the beach and our table games at Hard Rock and another bonfire and getting Rach's dog drunk (oh god was that funny) and all in all it was an amazing weekend.

Emily (my sister, in case you don't know) is graduating on Sunday. This Sunday. And that's scary. I miss when she was little and we could talk about our parents and boys and school and the horror of CHS theology classes after school before mom and dad came home. I miss our coffee shop dates and chick-flick nights. And I think sometimes that there is so much I wish I could tell her, so much I wish I could say: "Ohmygod don't do that!" but things are different now and she is only two and a half years younger than me and I'm sure she'll make mistakes and laugh about them later and learn from them if she wants to- lessons like "Never Play Kings with Mean Boys" or "It is Possible to Eat an Entire Box of Wheat Thins in One Day" or "Never Think that Just because You're From Here instead of some Prep School that you're not smart." Lessons are funny things- I almost think the funny ones are as valuable as the serious ones sometimes...

I don't know- now I'm rambling. Sorry. So I'll send a few more e-mails and try to figure out what the time difference is is Britain...

5/6/06 01:30 am - remember we used to dance, and everyone wanted to be you and me...

I find it funny that two years of college makes me think I have the right to talk as if this is all just a normal part of life- that in some little way I deserve all this.  If I sound like that, it's not true.

But I have learned a lot in two years- learned things outside of Albert Camus' theory of rebellion or the use of regression in environmental safety suits or the pagan/Catholic imagery in The Sun Also Rises...

I've learned that leadership has nothing to do with titles or self-importance or whether or not you made the "25 Most Powerful Women at Duke" facebook group- there's something about making people believe in themselves, in their own capacity to change the lives of others for the better that, even if you go nameless, you can't help feeling a little proud of having a part in.

I've learned that friendship, in it's most sacred, undeserved forms, does in fact exist- friends with whom you can spend a week in Florida, and in the end have souvenirs and hours and hours of driving time and over 400 pictures, friends who walk you back from the debauchery that is the Last Day of Classes and write marker messages on your mirror for you to see when you get up for your 9:30 AM CSC student director meeting, friends who will voluntarily wear pink suspenders and a green Mr. Potato head hat for you, friends who take multiple pictures of slugs with your camera when you go back to a party and leave your purse with them, friends with whom you can talk for hours about the important stuff, no matter the exams or papers or meetings you have the next morning, friends that have dragged you out of your room, heart-broken and tear-stained, to eat chocolate cake, friends who stand there right next to you in the moments where you don't know if you'll be able to speak another word or take another step...

I've learned that it's okay to miss someone- to miss your family or your childhood- that doesn't make you weak.

I've learned that love, well, cliché as it sounds, love is everywhere- in the people we least expect and the chances we never thought we'd have and the skies we don't think we deserve to wake up to....

And now it's off to sleep and pack and then MYRTLE!!!! 


4/28/06 01:59 pm

"A broad river divides my lovers- family, duty, fate. As unchangeable as nature"

-Shakespeare in Love

4/25/06 01:07 am - "man, i wish i was beautiful"

I've always supposed there are people in this world to whom sentences and adjectives could not do justice. I think I finally know one of them.

What to say to someone who is so above language when language was always the one thing you had in your favor? Sometimes I want to scream that I'm trying, doing my best from my tiny perspective with my senseless little words and ambitions and tendency to smile at all the wrong moments.

...beautifully and startlingly puzzled, to say the least.

4/20/06 01:58 am

Memory: I stood at my open third-floor window (the one that sometimes refuses to close) still in my skirt and heels and I felt as I imagine Jay Gatsby must have writing that list of things to do every day ("elocution, poise, and how to attain it"), like Jake saying "To hell with you, Lady Ashley" at the beginning of The Sun Also Rises, and I wanted to take off my heels and run until I forgot what it was I was running away from. I left my window open and barely slept that night.

Confession: I'm not really a very corporate person. I hate talking business; life is not one long string of e-mails and deadlines. It's more a self-preservation thing. I talk like that when I feel I have something to prove, and I always, without exception, feel dishonest afterward.

Secret: I know I should have probably been crying or sitting semi-paralyzed on my bed after realizing that I had, in fact, lost. Instead I threw on jeans and a tank top, cranked up "Like a Prayer," and danced around my room laughing. So much for the agony of defeat.

Question: Is it conceited to think sometimes that I just might end up doing exactly what I dream about doing with my life?

Observation: Every time I see you, all I can think of is that line in that Sinatra song where he says "keep that breathless charm." Perhaps I'm the only person in the world who will ever think of you as breathlessly charming, or perhaps I'm simply speaking for the populace. I also kind-of wish you knew this because I think you would laugh.

4/13/06 01:52 am - thank you...that's all.

"People are funny, you know...they walk into your life and change it- with words or smiles or chances- and then they just go on living as if that kind of selflessness is just an ordinary part of life. And you stand there, wishing you could tell them that you couldn't have survived without them, but they've already walked away, moved on with a life so much greater than yours. And you stand there- a little stunned and too grateful to say anything at all"

4/9/06 01:37 am - shadows and steps and eternal reassurance

He stretched out his hand and she took it, spinning slowly, her feet already tired. She felt homely compared to the girls he usually danced with. But with her ordinary eyes ordinarily avoiding his, she felt, for the first time in a long time, that there was no one she needed to live up to. She had been used to out-dancing people, proving herself, scrutinizing the steps she performed (because it was, after all, a performance of sorts).

And so he took her hands, matching her steps and her abandoned insecurity (god she wondered how he could tell), and she stopped fighting whatever it was she usually fought under those lights. And when the song finished she threw her head back and laughed, as she always did to avoid ascribing meaning to things.

But as she walked home, his breath still on her shoulder and his footsteps in her mind, she wondered where the hell he'd learned to do that.
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