Wednesday, October 1, 2008

The Twenty Minute Waltz

I'm writing for twenty minutes without editing myself. Eventhough I just broke my own rule and edited the first senttnce. Please forgive mispellings and things that don't make sense. Or in other words, please forgive this entire post.

Last night I met my sponsor before the Al-Anon meeting. We went to Cafe! Cafe!, ate 3 bean soup and talked about dysfunctionality. Fun. The meeting began at 8:00 and it was 8:15 by the time we finished eating and talking.

"Should we still go?" I asked her.
"Well, yeah," Meryl said, as if the idea of skipping had never occured to her.
"But we're 15 minutes late."
"It's alright. People walk in late all the time."
"But I can't stay for the whole thing. Maybe 20 minutes. I don't have my babysitter for that long."
"Eh," she said. "I can't stay the whole time either. If they hate us, they hate us. But they won't, and we need it."
"I'm scared," I told her.
She stopped walking. We were halfway across the parking lot, getting later for the meeting every second.
"Why?" she asked.
"This meeting pushes all my buttons. It's painful."
She laughed but not in a sadistic way. "It'll get better. Let's go."

I got in the car and drove as eratically as I did the night of the first Tuesday meeting, the time that I almost crashed into the building. I had to slow down and take deep breaths to get myself there without slamming into anything.

The other night I had a nightmare. Do any of you guys remember the movie "Total Recall?" with Arnold Schwartzenager (sp?)? Remember at the end when he and his girlfriend are sucked out of a building onto Mars, where the atmosphere is deadly to humans and Arnold Swartzenayger (sp?)? They writhe and their eyes begin to pop out and crazy shit like that? That happened to me in the nightmare. I dreamt I was watching the movie and then suddenly I was on Mars, writhing while my eyes popped out, and my skin melted.

When I woke up I thought about Al-Anon. It's too much truth all at once. I get in there and all the air is sucked out of the room.

"Hi, I'm...Genevieve ! (GASP!)"
"Hi, Genevieve," they all say.
"Can't (gasp!)breathe! Help!" I hiccup and wheeze, clutching my throat. "Don't about!...myself!...parents not there (cough! sputter!) husband!...workaholic!...need (choke) love! sad!...all!...out of control...need chocolate...cigarette! (eyes pop out) That's!...All!"
"Thank you for sharing," they all say.

I stayed at the meeting for 20 minutes. As I tried to sneak out of the room, with everybody watching me and probably thinking, "You got here fifteen minutes late, and now you're leaving before the meeting ends? Why did you come here? And please get your eyeballs off the floor," I reminded myself about what Meryl said, about how the meetings will get better. I have been to one or two meetings in which I did not sit there shaking. It's not just thinking about what I'm going to say that makes me nervous, it's hearing what everybody else has to say. It's as if they read my blog and are attempting to copy my actions and emotions. We're all so alike, and I sit there looking at them and how miserable they are and I'm thinking, "Oh my God I'm YOU. And before I started coming to these meetings, these meetings that hold me under a light so bright that I feel like my skin will catch fire, I was insane. I was trying to make everybody happy and trying to be what everybody else wanted, and I was failing, and it drove me close to suicide. And now I'm a crying, shaking mess and I'm actually doing BETTER than before. Goddamn, I've got a long way to go."

The timer went off long ago. The phone has rang a couple of times, and both phone calls were from people I love so I stopped writing. Meryl gave me a mile long list of questions pertaining to the first step, and I will work on those later today.

I'm not even done with the first step and there are eleven more to go. I'm trying to do what they say, to take things one day at a time. But it's not the same as the feeling I get during a road trip where I'm excited about the destination, but I'm just as equally enthralled by the journey. I love driving and walking through places I've never been. This journey (atleast at this point) is not like that. This is slowly tearing off a bandaid. I've kept a dirty bandaid on all my problems so I don't have to see them. I wish I could just rip it off. But I've been trying to rip it off and all that does is give me nightmares that I'm dying of exposure. I have to adjust to this a little at a time. Holy hell.

1 comment:

melissa bastian. said...

You got a second follower! I'm jealous. And have I mentioned that I love your new "payphone" image up top? Well, I do.

You got a email address? If you feel like letting me know it, you can send it to mine, which is