Powerless, Once Again…

•December 28, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Updates to the last post – working on developing a first person stream of thought fictional character description (thus far it being only the stream of thought part). Feel free to give me critique or suggestion :)

It’s intimidating. Something in the way they look at you. So penetrating that you can feel your soul start to quiver. As they draw near, their eyes rake your body in waves moving slowly and so meticulously that you can see their irises dilate as the ever-changing blue slowly disappears. As their body starts to overshadow the light in the room and they move near, you wonder if anything else even exists – as if everyone else in the world suddenly stops and doesn’t move or breathe unless you’re actually watching it happen. It’s the feeling that – whether they’re standing right in front of you, close enough to feel the ever faster beating of your heart, or whether they’re across the room with eye contact as the only true connection – they know what you’re thinking, what you’re feeling, what you’re wishing. You feel naked as their stare pierces into your innermost realms of thought – and you know that can see the trembling of your knees as you attempt not to stagger under the weight of implication.

The way they move forces you to react like a magnet, constantly reassessing your physical orientation to complement theirs perfectly – just in case they choose to close the distance. Every flinch of their hand elicits a twitch from your fingers, itching to grasp theirs. Each time their mouth moves to allow words to pass through, your lips part, as if to receive them. The shifting of their eyes to someone else in the room pulls you to that point as if by some invisible force or rope and you panic as you attempt to regain their attention. Time seems to slow to the point that, for a few moments you can see a raindrop make it’s path down the stem of a flower and into the soil. You can see the embers ignite and die out at the end of a cigarette. You witness an individual beat of a hummingbird’s wings. And as all of these amazing things happen around you, your focus doesn’t waver for a minute from that person’s face, waiting for that fleeting expression of genuine emotion that graces one’s face before the reaction we decide to present takes over, making you feel as if that imperceptible moment never really happened in the first place. You’ve studied every reaction and movement of their body for so long that you feel like the creator. As if you were the sculptor commissioned to find the perfect being waiting to be revealed in a piece of granite or stone. You know every line or crinkle in their face that only appears when they start to laugh. You can predict when their hair will start to fall in front of their eyes almost quickly enough to reach out and catch it, placing it neatly back into its proper place. Every part of their body – from their shoulders that flex as they hug someone walking in the doorway, to their collarbone that rises with each breath they intake, to their foot that taps in time with the music playing – stirs as if you molded it out of clay one day while pondering what the perfectly flawed human would look and move like. As if you were painting and dictating what the figures on the canvas should be formed and evolved into.

And somehow they have the ability to just reach out to grab it. If they asked you for your heart, you know you wouldn’t dare put up a fight. You’d just hand it over to them, and let them do what they wanted with it – no matter the intentions. As much as you want to think you’d demand a certain level of respect and consideration, you don’t care if they throw it out the window, so long as they held it in their hands for a brief moment in time. ‘Tis better to have felt love at all, right?

But where is the line drawn? Is this feeling you’ve been dwelling on for what feels like centuries love or mere infatuation? Or have you focused on the curve of their neck and the movement of their eyes for so long that you create the illusion that your feelings are mutual? You try to convince yourself that something this strong has to be genuine. You feel like you know their body and emotions and reactions so well that there isn’t the slightest possibility of lack of reciprocity. The obvious passion cannot possibly be ignored by anyone – especially them.

But it’s not important to you that the moment be mutually felt – you know what you feel. You want nothing more than to make the decision on your own. The decision to take control and not ask for what you want, but take it. But is that choice really still in your power to make? It scares you to realize that, for once in your life, you might not be in control of what happens next.

How does it feel to be truly powerless to the thrills of exaltation? To not care about any true exchange, but rather to prefer the enjoyment of a dream (if it turned out to only be that) is such a Shakespearean plot twist, and it’s one you’d be content with if that’s all this turned out to be. The line between obsession and love grows thinner as all definitions of those words lose any sort of relevance in your thoughts. Dangerous territory has been breached, and you hope to never tread elsewhere.

Powerless

•December 26, 2010 • Leave a Comment

It’s intimidating. Something in the way they look at you. So penetrating that you can feel your soul start to quiver. So intensely that you start to wonder if anything else in the room even exists, as if everyone else in the world doesn’t move or interact or breathe unless you’re watching it happen. It’s the feeling that – whether they’re standing right in front of you, close enough to feel their breath, or whether they’re across the room with eye contact as the only true connection – they know what you’re thinking, what you’re feeling, what you’re wishing. Because they have the ability to just reach out to grab it. If they wanted something of yours, you know you wouldn’t dare put up a fight – you’d just hand it over to them, and let them do what they wanted with it – no matter the intentions. In fact, as much as you want to think you’d demand a certain level of respect and consideration, you don’t care if they throw it out the window, so long as they held it in their hands for a brief moment in time.

The way they move forces you to react like a magnet, constantly reassessing your physical orientation to complement theirs perfectly – just in case they choose to close the distance. Time seems to slow to the point that, for a few moments you can see a raindrop make it’s path down the stem of a flower and into the soil. You can see the embers ignite and die out at the end of a cigarette. You get to witness an individual beat of a hummingbird’s wings. And as all of these amazing things happen around you, your focus doesn’t waver for a minute from that person’s face, waiting for that fleeting expression of genuine emotion that graces one’s face before the reaction we decide to present takes over, making you feel as if that imperceptible moment never really happened in the first place. And you want nothing more than to make the decision on your own. The decision to take control and not ask for what you want, but take it. But is that choice really still in your power to make? It scares you to realize that, for once in your life, you might not be in control of what happens next.

 

December 14 Reverb10 PromptAppreciate. What’s the one thing you have come to appreciate most in the past year? How do you express gratitude for it? (Author: Victoria Klein)

I’ve come to appreciate the ability to remain powerless – and not just tolerate that reaction, but embrace and appreciate it. I have been writing things like the passage above more often lately, and the conjecture of thought that strings all of my writings together seems to be this masochistic love of those who made me powerless – whether in a positive or negative manner. And at this point? I’m obsessed with cultivating this in all aspects of my life. Healthy or Sadistic? I guess we’ll see, won’t we?

Are The Kids REALLY Alright?

•December 25, 2010 • Leave a Comment

December 24 – Everything’s OK. What was the best moment that could serve as proof that everything is going to be alright? And how will you incorporate that discovery into the year ahead? (Author: Kate Inglis)
The one moment that proves everything is going to be alright? Are you kidding?!

I don’t know if it was so much one moment, as it was more a string of moments that culminated into the general feeling of “it’s going to be ok” – maybe. I actually don’t know yet – if it’s all ok, I mean. Of course through everything that’s happened this year, I maintained my patented, glass-half-full perspective. But what really happens at the end of that? I don’t know if, just because it’s the end of the year and a time for reflection, that it’s all gonna work out. As much as my obsessive compulsive tendencies like to make me believe, not everything gets a fresh start come January 1st.

And I think that now my healthy acknowledgment of that fact stands, I can finally truly diminish that nagging stressful voice in my head. I don’t know what it is about not really knowing it’ll be ok -but rather knowing, even if it isn’t, time goes on regardless – that really leaves a sense of calm in my subconscious – but I’m ok with it. And I like the way it feels.

So I guess my answer is: right now. At this moment, I’ve realized it’s all going to be alright – or at least I know I’ll deal either way. Progress is almost the equivalent of satisfaction in this case. Thanks to Kate Inglis for this prompt :)

Always Playing Catch-Up

•December 22, 2010 • 1 Comment

Basically this is what’s going on. I suck/life sucks/everything sucks. But I’m NOT going to allow this to be something I stop doing, and thus I will be catching up a few prompts at a time. Bear with me?

K good.

On to the most recent prompt:

December 23New Name. Let’s meet again, for the first time. If you could introduce yourself to strangers by another name for just one day, what would it be and why? (Author: Becca Wilcott)

So this question seems made for me – I’ve ALWAYS wondered what it would be like if I’d been given a different name. Don’t get me wrong – there’s an adorable story behind why my mother named me Brittany, and it has heart and history and “aww”‘s in all the right places – but I’ve always pondered how I might have a different attitude toward people in general if my name had been clever and unique, like my sister’s, Altie (AL-tee, not all-tee people). She oft complains of mispronunciations, and I oft complain of comparisons to others with my namesake (and I swear if one more person asks me if I will ever shave my head like Spears…). But as far as introducing myself as someone else? I don’t know if I would. I think my mom is waay too proud of me being exactly what she prayed for and I’d never dream of being anyone other than who she raised me to be.

But just for fun? I’d totally go with Babs – it’s a fantastic old woman name that’s gotten me out of a few tight situations :)

 

 

Here’s a few old ones:

December 20Beyond Avoidance. What should you have done this year but didn’t because you were too scared, worried, unsure, busy or otherwise deterred from doing? (Bonus: Will you do it?) (Author: Jake Nickell)

&
December 17Lesson Learned. What was the best thing you learned about yourself this past year? And how will you apply that lesson going forward? (Author: Tara Weaver)
I doubt there’s any one person out there who can say there wasn’t anything they DIDN’T do tat they SHOULD have. As far as myself? There are so many things I should have done:

I should have called my family more often.
I should have been there in those moments when my good friends REALLY needed me.
I should have spent more time focusing on Architecture.
I should have budgeted better and spent less.
I should have taken better care of the relationships that are important to me.
I should have said more YOU & THEM statements as opposed to I & US.
I should have taken more vitamins.
I should have read more books.
I should have spent more time int the city.

This list is quickly digressing into what I WANT not just what I should be doing – but it’s an interesting dynamic presented. Where do you draw the line of what’s necessary or a “should” and what’s merely a desire. And the title of this prompt has EVERYTHING to do with this digression – if something is beyond our control – we can at that point remain blameless while just plain whining. How selfish.

To sum it up? I was selfish this year. too selfish and scared and worried and unsure and busy to consider thinking of someone other than myself. And while I’m glad I have made these decisions and realized this fact at the point in my life when I’m still young enough to correct it, there’s still always going to be this tiny little wonder in the back of my mind that wonders if now is the beginning of my understanding of the word regret.

Settling Down

•December 6, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Not settling for less – by any measure or means.

Reverb10 Daily Prompt – December 6th

Make. What was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it?

This question seems made for me. I’m glad to have a question that eases up in the sense of seriousness, as I was beginning to feel extremely internalized – a rare occurrence for a rambler such as myself. Not that the results from the previous reflections weren’t well intentioned or received. I absolutely welcome any moment to realize something about myself that I wasn’t previously aware of. It’s been refreshing and what I need to start to let go, in a way, as my previous response allowed me to see.

What was the last thing I made? As an architecture major that seems like a trick question. I recently completed my final project for my studio class, and it was actually a really fun project. I used the typical materials (basswood, foam core, chipboard, etc..) and a few new ones (air-dry clay, some pretty ribbon for material differentiation, etc..). The model was for a project that I didn’t really have a chance to fully develop, though, and the more I think about it – I wished I would have put in a little more time and effort to really fully realize the project’s potential.

But as far as what I want to make? Call me a broken record, but I want to create a life for myself. Don’t get me wrong – I have lived a very blessed and fulfilled life. I have just recently decided that it’s time to create my OWN  life as an adult and to create a home for myself, by myself. Even the simple question on facebook “Where is your hometown” elicits quite the blank face. I’ve always considered my hometown to be wherever my family is.

So here I am: a 24-year-old architecture student, living alone in one of the most amazing cities in the world, working on becoming a responsible adult in all aspects of life (financial, mental, emotional, ethical, moral, etc..). And that means that I am well placed to truly become a woman of substance and intellect – in fact I have no excuse not to, it’s now my calling of sorts. When I first made this goal a focus of my current decisions, I must admit I was really conflicted. I felt like it was a disregard of my family and everything they’ve sacrificed for me, and that making these decisions and writing these thoughts down that I’ve had for so long were somehow showing a lack of appreciation or an ungrateful attitude toward them. But I’ve reached a moment of clarity that was actually motivated by writing this all down and working it out – imagine that. I’ve found that by establishing my identity, I don’t estrange myself from my family and friends who helped to shape me into who I am today – I actually start to reflect them in a way that shows gratitude instead of just expressing it verbally. If the person I become is someone they can be proud of, it’s a reverent thank you that shows what a great job they did. And in my opinion, I like who I am changing into – so thank you to everyone who had and still actively has a part in the metamorphosis. And all of this actually starts to answer not only today’s prompt, but also one of the first that I happened to miss on December 1st:

One Word. Encapsulate the year 2010 in one word. Explain why you’re choosing that word. Now, imagine it’s one year from today, what would you like the word to be that captures 2011 for you?

Current Word: Vagabond. (see entry on 6/7/09)
Future Word: Settled (see above)

You know, when I read and began to respond to today’s prompt, I was disappointed in my original thought process and direction. Now? I’m kind of proud. Thanks to the world for passively allowing me to talk at you – even if it’s only through indifference. I love you and am truly thankful for your apparent perpetual ears.

Self-Preservation

•December 5, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Reverb10 Daily Prompt – December 5th

Let Go. What (or whom) did you let go of this year? Why?

Today’s prompt from Reverb10 really threw me, but not like it should have. It should have some stronger emotional repercussions than what they currently are. Everyone who is participating is tweeting that they had a hard time thinking about the answer and what it meant for them, or how the prompt stopped them in their tracks. I read it, and I immediately felt the weight behind asking a question like that, but it was an empty weight. One typically doesn’t ask a question like that unless there’s the existence of an emotionally close relationship present. It’s a question new lovers ask each other when they are spending every waking moment learning everything about each other. It’s a question a therapist asks a new patient once they’ve gained their trust for the first time. It’s not a topic usually stepped into lightly.

Earlier today, a friend asked me about my year in general. I responded that it was a pretty okay year, but I remember sitting there thinking – I didn’t have a good year, I actually had a pretty horrible year. And the fact that I just tend to answer happily about whatever I’m asked, regardless of how I truly feel – it’s not a healthy mentality to have nor is it one I usually adhere to. So I corrected myself, saying I had a weird and off year and parts of it were pretty bad. When he asked what specifically was so bad, I couldn’t really pin down why. I just remember feeling multiple times this year that I wasn’t happy at all. And that’s the closest to depressed I think I’ve ever been. I tend to consider myself a fairly happy person and I don’t like feeling like this.

I think the problem behind all of this has been not letting go. I’ve spent the entire year dealing with things and people, that of course I should have as any other responsible adult would, but I also think that now I am being charged with letting go of all of it. I have to stop focusing on everyone else. I have to stop trying to make sure I am there for others without first making sure I’m there for myself. And most of all, I have to learn to stop carting everyone and everything along with me everywhere. I’ve adjusted to moving around so many times and struggled to hold on to every last person I meet just in case I have to leave again. I have to learn to stop hoarding and to simply let go.

Reverberations

•December 4, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Through a friend’s well written chronicle of her daily going-ons, I have discovered just the thing I needed – a site that, for the sake of reflecting and evolving, posts daily prompts for writers throughout December. These are short open-ended topics meant to inspire writers to not only reflect upon their year and catapult them into the coming year with what can be described as renewed vigor, but I am going to use it to serve the double purpose of building a blog I’m not ashamed to claim. Meaning mostly, I don’t want a whiny self-reflected series of detailed and well-described experiences – I want an Epiphany.

 

I’m a bit late to the show, but we’ll start with the prompt issued for December 4th:

Wonder. How did you cultivate a sense of wonder in your life this year?

 

Wonder tends to be a word often associated with curiosity – something I’m accused of possessing too much of, but it’s also a word of inspiring awe and appreciation (in my mind at least). I’m not sure how often the experiences involving wonder in my life are cultivated by my own actions, but I know that words have always been my favorite game when it comes down to it.

No I’m not a writer or one who studies much you would really connect with a word lover such as myself – I’m an architecture student who works too much and never gets enough sleep. But somehow I still find those moments when I can arrange for a stolen hour to be taken up with reading a new book I can’t afford and shouldn’t have wasted my time reading. And this never-ending drive to master all the words in the English vocabulary (don’t even get me started on other languages, sigh) led me to a few really interesting conclusions. When going through and critiquing these conclusions, I found that my responses always had something to do with starting over and creating an identity. If you could only see the statistics and reports on my blog management page – there are more drafts than published posts. Amongst these posts I found one that I constantly contribute to and review for the past year or so, but that never seems done enough to post – it’s one that refers to the anonymity that I feel is my life. And all roads seems to point to the solution that I have yet to really create the person I am, or at least who I want to be since you don’t get to really choose who you are, really.

This is where the sense of wonder comes in to the picture. I have so much that I want for my life as far as changes go, and it seems I’m just waiting on myself to make the decision to just do it. Silly me, I have this OCD thing about waiting for the right time-frame. How does New Year’s sound? Perfect for cliche life changes right? Well then I guess everyone should just prepare to meet the curiously wonder inspiring person I plan to present – and it’s not going to be a quiet transition, either..