Sunday, May 23, 2010

begin again

How to begin again?

Say thanks.

Thanks to friends, for friends, for words of encouragement, for everything.

For well-prepared landladies who have extra lighters for novice jungle dwellers who don't know enough to stock candles and flashlights in case of the inevitable – and frequent – biblical thunderstorms and power outages.

Thanks for a husband who will try to fix the kitchen sink – at night, in a blackout, while it's pouring rain outside -- with only the light of a tea candle to see by. It didn't work out so well, but I'm no stranger to doing dishes in the shower.

And thanks for something Mr. Ippolito said. He said I sounded like the girl I was in high school.

That brought tears to my eyes. I haven't thought about that girl in such a long time. I almost forgot she existed. Then I think maybe she's been waiting for me all this time. Like a friend you can bump into after twenty years and talk to like no time has passed.

So what would I say to her? Or maybe I should shut up and listen. What would she say to me?

You should have kept those Fiorucci t-shirts. You've never loved any piece of clothing more.

I told you geometry was a waste of time.

Don’t let me down.


Have I let her down? Would she be proud of me? A voice tells me to ask her and see what she says.

I'm trying to hear her voice and see her face – but she's fuzzy to me.

Clearer to me are the girls she knew. The girls who laughed all the way up five flights of stairs to homeroom. The girls who walked to the deli and called it gym class. The girls who listened to rock or danced to disco in the Tea House.

Such amazing girls. Passionate. Beautiful. Immortal.

They're the same to me even now -- only wiser and stronger, full of accomplishment and life stories. Children. Spouses. Partners. Good news. Bad news. Struggles. Triumphs.

So if those girls still exist then maybe it’s not too much to hope . . . ?

I begin again, "Have I let you down?"

I hear Mia now. "You think too much." Maybe. Probably. Most definitely.

Humor me, I'm in the middle of the jungle and there's no one else around.

"Have I let you down?"

I wait. I hear something.

"That's the wrong question," she says.

"So what's the right question?," I ask.

"Dunno. But that's not it."


Then I start to remember the girl who loved to go to Bloomingdale's on Saturday and the movies on Sunday. The girl who loved Norma Kamali and Stagelight makeup and skating in the Park. The girl who loved to dance and dream and laugh. I can see her. She's there. Still.

I guess I'll try to stop asking the wrong questions and try to figure out the right ones. Or maybe there are no questions. Maybe they get in the way of what you already know, and what you think you've forgotten. Because somewhere out there, in there, is the person you used to be. And she's not disappointed. She has faith. She has friends.

And for that I am most grateful.

Now turn on the shower, I've got dishes to do.

1 comment:

  1. Amazing! I can't wait for the next entry. This is better than when Sex in the City first came out and I couldn't wait for the next episode. I love the hope and the honesty.