Thursday, January 26, 2012

Indie Ink: Everything Falls Apart

The apartment started to fall apart around the same time the first cracks in their relationship appeared, Livvie had noticed.  A bad fight about trash and the garbage disposal broke; nights of sleeping on couches and ignoring one another after feelings and egos were hurt matched up with the bathroom’s flooding thanks to a faulty pipe; and almost-indifferent declarations of “what are we even doing?” came about when the coffeemaker had blown up one sullen Sunday morning.  It was no surprise that Steve didn’t want to hear her complaints about their refrigerator. 

What else was left?  What more could they take?

Still, she couldn’t let it go, not quite yet.  She put down her newspaper and held up a spoonful of her breakfast as though she was providing proof in a trial and said, “The milk is warm, Steve.  If the refrigerator was working properly, that wouldn’t happen.”

“Livvie,” he breathed out in an almost-sigh.  There was so much in that one word and yet, none of it mattered.

“I’m serious.  Warm milk is good when you can’t sleep, not so much in Cheerios.”

Steve concentrated his gaze on her and offered up his best placating expression.  “I checked it this morning.  It’s not broken.  It’s just a little hiccup.  It gives it character.”  He said it with the fervor of the pulpit and the agenda of a flimflam man.  Livvie didn’t really believe him – he was a graphic designer, not a handy man – but she found herself acquiescing anyway.

She picked up her paper and swallowed the spoonful of cereal a la gross milk.  She used to enjoy these long silences between the two of them.  It had felt almost romantic in a way, that they could be together doing their own things, and all was right with the world.  Now it was stifling and all she could think about.  Wrong, wrong, wrong…too quiet…wrong.

After her fifth attempt at reading the same line of an article on nuclear disarmament, she gave up and focused her attention on Steve.  He was still handsome to look at, even with bedhead and the wheezing that passed for breathing from his battle with a cold, and a part of her wanted to reach out and touch him.  But she didn’t.  She watched him drawing in his notebook with one hand while he shoveled a bagel into his mouth with the other.  His eyes were shut and she knew he was lost somewhere in his own head.  Sometimes she wished she could visit the places that his imagination traveled to.  Just the two of them, together, lost in between galaxies and dreams and specters only the mind could create.  He would hold her tightly against his chest and she would rest her head on his shoulder just so as she wrapped her arms around his neck.  Things would be the way they were; the way they were meant to be when there wasn't real life and trivial crap to get in the way.

Now it was all flourescent kitchen lights and conversations-that-turned-into-arguments about who was supposed to mail the bills and an apartment that was falling to pieces.   They were battle worn and weary of one another.  They knew each other in ways that proved how much they had loved (or was it loved?  She didn't know any more) each other, but it provided each of them with years' worth of ammo and god, she hated him for it.  She hated it almost as much as she loathed herself for never leaving, but who else was she if not Livvie of Steve-and-Livvie?

After what felt like minutes, but was probably nothing more than a few seconds, Steve opened his eyes and caught her staring at him.  He dropped his pencil and wiped his hand over his face self-consciously.  It created a momentary pang in her chest, seeing how far things had shifted.  Long gone were the enamored gazes and the smiles and blushes that formed when noticed.  If she was staring at Steve, it meant something wasn't quite right.

"It all started with the goddamn garbage disposal, I think," Livvie said. 

"I told you I'd get around to replacing it soon," Steve replied, crossing his arms protectively over his chest.

She hadn't known she had said that out loud.  She hadn't meant to.  But she found herself quickly getting caught up in the moment.  She rolled her eyes at mention of the inevitable soon.

Steve still knew her well.  He shrugged and said, "I need to buy some parts."

Livvie leaned back in her chair.  "It's fine."

"What does that mean?"

"The same thing that soon does, I suppose," she replied.  She picked up her spoon and mindlessly pushed the cereal around in the bowl and let out a low huff of air.  She shook her head, refusing to look at Steve, and tried to clear her brain of the junk bogging her down in hopes of achieving some sort of clarity.  Trying and wishing would be her downfall. 

How was it possible to love someone so much and wish they would fade away at the same time?  And why couldn't she do anything to fix it or put them both out of their misery?

She glanced around the room and couldn't stop her eyes from landing back on the refrigerator, which was buzzing out an off-key tune.  "We need a new refrigerator."

"I told you--"

"--it's broken.  Maybe beyond repair."

"No, it's not."

"It's not working like it should and we can't live like this," she replied.  She ran her hand over her face and added, "Why are we living like this?"

He stared at her and shrugged.  She didn't know if she should kiss him or punch him, so she shoved out of her seat and stormed off.   Nothing was going to change this way and something had to change.

For the IndieInk Writing Challenge this week, Sarah Sparks challenged me with "Have a broken fridge involved." and I challenged Carrie with "I can no longer stand the guilt and I need to confess"

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

right at the end of the day, but still in time to share my wish

It has been a long day.  I still need to finish up my piece for this week's Indie Ink challenge, but I think it's waiting until tomorrow morning as I'm starting to feel the pull of my heated blanket and sleep.  But I didn't want to miss out on Wishcast Wednesday, so right under the gun...

Today Jamie asks:

courtesy of we heart it

“To insure good health: Eat lightly, breathe deeply, live moderately, cultivate cheerfulness, and maintain an interest in life.” - William Londen

i wish to stop planning and fretting and waiting for tomorrow to get my head and body in order.  I seem to live for the perpetual tomorrow and there is no reason for it.  I do much better with right now on everything else, why wouldn't my health be the same?  

I wish to put as much energy into improving my mental and physical health as I do worrying about the myriad of ways I fail at these things.  

I can do it. 

What do you wish for?

As you wish for yourself, so I truly wish for you also...

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Just close your eyes and listen...

It's been a rough couple of weeks emotionally, but focusing on the positive, I have made some progress on decluttering the house and getting rid of things.  It was getting ridiculous and I'm pretty sure it was slowly sapping away my energy.  Today was a tough therapy session that involved a lot of tears shed and I hate crying even if I know it's a way to get out all of this negativity and garbage I've kept stuffed away for so long.  It's not fun while I'm in it, but hopefully soon I realize it was all for the best.

Luckily, it's Wishcasting Wednesday, and today Jamie asks:

courtesy of we heart it

"It is only when we silent the blaring sounds of our daily existence that we can finally hear the whispers of truth that life reveals to us, as it stands knocking on the doorsteps of our hearts." ~K.T. Jong

I wish to hear the truth and fears behind my thoughts and reasons for my actions.  I wish to hear the why in my choices that sometimes goes unnoticed in the moment.  I wish to listen to myself more and not feel guilty or selfish for what I need.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

first wishcast of 2012

First day back to work after vacation and things are slightly crazy at the moment.  But how could I miss the first wishcast of 2012?  It's one of my favorite parts of the week and I feel strangely unfocused when I don't take part.  I have to finish preparing my co-worker's gift for tomorrow (part homemade fun/part real gift), so I won't be able to visit each blog until tomorrow, but as always know, as you wish for yourself, so I truly wish for you also.

This week Jamie asks us:

courtesy of we heart it

I wish to make peace with my anger, sadness, and grief toward my mother.  It's hard to carry around this anger for things that happened in my life.  I've come to accept that I'm allowed to be upset, that I'm not marring her memory but being honest about how I perceived things and how I was hurt, but I haven't been able to forgive her yet.  And it's keeping me from really saying goodbye and moving past her death and not being tied down to these crazy ideas she put in my head because she meant well or just didn't know any better.  I know she loved me, but I haven't been able to get past these feelings of resentment I feel.  It's not good to carry this around.  I want to be able to conjure up the good memories of my mother when people ask about her, and there were plenty of good memories, but right now they get lost in this space in my gut.

I wish to finally process these emotions and move past them.  The only person they're hurting is me and I think I've done enough of that already.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

ringing in 2012...

Happy New Year.  I've had all these posts in my head.  I would say, "I want to write about that" and then I would get distracted.  Kinda like the dogs in Up!  "I really want to talk about...BALL!..."  or "I've discovered that I'm rather...SQUIRREL!..."  I have problems.

I'm excited for 2012.  I feel optimistic and hopeful.  I feel like I've come along way in the past few years.  I'm still on the journey, still up to my eyes in working on my own betterment, but I'm feeling good for the most part.

Tomorrow I will do a post on resolutions.  Though I hate that word.  I associate the word with failure and woe.  I'd much rather just focus on goals.

Again, happy new year, everyone!  Here's to a healthy, happy and fun year!