if ever you should need to know.

if ever you should need to know the most profound and efficient way to exhaust one's self, it is my belief that the answer is this: cry. 

further study needs to be done so as to ascertain whether it is the actual act of crying, or the often futile attempt to hold back the tears which proves more effective. 

this morning i experienced both and am thus unable to give a definitive result of my findings.  

this much i can say: this morning a i had a whopping-good cry (though i can't really say it was good). it was very public, very unexpected and unbelievably draining. i spent the remainder of my day feeling as though someone had put me through the spin cycle of a washing machine working over time. 

i infiltrated enemy territory today. enemy territory as defined by my recent past. the blackened corridors stretched long and narrow and with each step i was assaulted by tangible memories. i became a version of my six-year-old-self who saw her future and wanted to run. but i'm not six. and it's not my future. and i can't run. 

sometimes the thing that's simultaneously glorious and impossibly hard about New York is that it's a living-breathing memory book where every subway stop, every corner deli, every intersection carries the weight of a memory. 

i first fell in love at the 125th street subway station. he was reading a book. and i knew.

my first boyfriend lived off the 191st street stop. i promptly broke up with him at a diner on the corner of 69th and Broadway. 

outside of big nicks, on the corner of 71st and Columbus, is where i told he-who-shall-not-be-named that i liked him. that night i dreamt of snow and rebirth.

at the lemongrass grill on 94th and Broadway i put my knee up on the empty seat between us and he played with my hanging pony tail. he held my hand under the table. no one knew. and a secret was born.

i made a mistake on 207th street.

and sadness became my sole companion on 104th.

most of the time when i'm walking the streets of my (sometimes) beloved city i choose to remember the good things. 

this morning i had to return to school for a meeting. so laden with memories is the school that it can be hard to breathe. i've only been back the once, to see the greeks, and i was left wondering why i feared going back in the first place. today i remembered. remembered. memory. memories. i feared the memories. walking the halls at school...well, it is hard to only remember the good. the memories come so rapidly my subconscious doesn't have time to sort through them. overstimulation in the worst possible way. too many memories, too closely placed. too many land mines to avoid. sit in the same chair, feel like a student all over again. and the torrent of memories is made manifest by the torrent of tears desperately making their away across the peaks and valleys of my face. i didn't mean to cry. the tears just came. silently. 

now I am left exhausted beyond measure and wondering what I have to show for a year where, for the first time, success isn't a ready-made box for me to check off.