saturday night.

everything was tinged with magic.

there it was. that silly, overwrought, ill-advised word: magic.

but that's how it seemed.

the gentle, teeming snowflakes--exhausted and exhausting only days before now new again. and clear.

the passing of a guy she had known seven years before. as strangers. smiling at the near run-in, ducking her head, giving thanks for the miss.

the skateboarders on the overpass. the grinding of their frantic wheels contrasting the steady hurtling moan of the subway.

she wore no makeup. and felt beautiful. felt the eyes of the men around her.

this is happiness.

the thought didn't flicker past, didn't approach slowly. it just was. everywhere and all at once--encircling, encompassing, bone-rattling.

one iced latte, please.

the last time i spoke to tom i said, sometimes, i just don't want to feel so much.

and he said, congratulations, you've just defined what an eating disorder is in a nutshell--the not wanting to feel.

i've been going through this interminable, undeniable period of writer's block.

as soon as i got here: capow, it hit. and i wondered if it had something to do with energy--with the transference of energy.

because, you see, for me...writing has always been an act of energy. of feeling. of seeing feelingly. what i mean is, i don't think it through terribly well. i mean i think it through, but mostly at a level of half-awareness. on a simmer of sorts and when it begins to boil...well, then i write. it's a feeling thing. of taking what i'm feeling and putting it on the page. so that while the reader may not get what i'm saying exactly, it doesn't quite matter, because they've lived in a different place, for just a moment. felt something just a wee bit their own. or not their own. they've experienced some sort of shift. (i think. i hope).

feeling and energy.

this post alone should be case enough to send me back to a school where someone can teach me how to write correctly and articulately and well. and yet, that's not really of interest to me. i want to write in the cracks. in the fault lines. i want to walk away with dirty fingers from sorting through the glorious and renegade weeds of my own life.

and so here i am, suddenly trying to act, and i can't write. and if i can't write, well then...
i always assumed it would be possible to do both. but this acting thing and tapping into emotions disperses and displaces my energy in such a way that the water only simmers. constantly, yes. but no real bubbles. no explosions of air.

and the thing is i'm quite sure that writing saved my life. and so i can't give it up.

how did it save my life? a good and valid question. well, because, if writing is feeling, and an eating disorder is the avoidance of feeling, then writing (for me) is the enemy of ned*. writing is the sorcerer's stone. the silver bullet. the long, sought after spoonful of sugar.

funny, i always thought it would be love.

acting is a feeling thing too. i do it feelingly. and i'm quite good at it. or i was. once. and yet in some ways (and i realized this just tonight) it was only perpetuating my sickness. as actors we are desperate to feel. but we play people who feel so very much that they want all the feeling taken out of them, want to stand barren. as actors we play people who rail against--who laugh when they need to cry--who become silent when the cries of rage overpower.

i thought i stepped away from acting because i couldn't align my health with the realities of the industry. but now i realize it was more than that. it was that it wasn't healthy for me to play people who didn't want to feel. because that was the reality of my life. it was too close.

there are days when i feel the residuals of ned. and suddenly it's as though i can't breathe. i mistakingly step into a pocket of space and time that he has claimed as his own and i am swimming through air, helplessly. and yes, i smile for the camera. and yes, as i do so i feel like a fraud. a liar. and while people kindly remind me of how far i've come, it doesn't feel as though i've taken but two steps from the ground zero of my own invited destruction.

and then just as quickly i step out of that pocket. and i see the many thousands of miles i've traversed. and i see the many miles i've left to go. and it all seems possible.

i don't believe the people that say this will be something i struggle with for the rest of my life. i think they're wrong. i think they don't know. i think that's something that's been said so often and for so long that others repeat it as fact.

i think i will look back on all this in two, ten, twenty years and i will in fact be doing just that, looking back. it won't be a daily battle. and i say all this because even now there are days where i feel so completely, so gloriously, so perfectly... normal.

i started all this rambling by declaring this a period of undeniable writer's block. undeniable might be a misnomer. maybe it's not writer's block. maybe it's just that i've not taken the time to sit down and hash it all out. to force the boil. sometimes words come easily and i've been so very fortunate to experience that. often. and yet there is just as much value in the uphill trek through the muck, the searching for words when words themselves seem impossible.

because this--all of this will make me a better actor if and when i decide that that's a path i want to embark on. writing is not the enemy of acting. and acting is not the enemy of good health. and, well...there you have it.

and maybe love is the answer. love of words and theatre and afternoon bike rides. and coffee, coffee too.

you know, i sat down to write a post on the virtues of coffee and this is what i got.

go figure.

*ned is the name for my nasty little eating disorder.
to read more, go here.

1. and 2.

it would seem there are two things i cannot bring myself to write about.

1. theatre
2. the only man i've ever really been in love with

i'd like to write about both. i attempt to write about both. often. but the words simply do not come.

i was going to try. just now. to give theatre a little whirl. to put some words into the air.

so i sat down to my computer. looked at the blank screen. looked a the rough draft i penciled into my moleskin yesterday. got tired. and decided to take a nap instead.

yup, a nap at seven o'clock.

will try again. later.

the kiss.

it had been so long since she kissed someone, she wondered if she had forgotten how.

because surely this was not how it was meant to go.

wasn't one person meant to go for the top lip, the other the bottom?

she couldn't figure out what was happening.

well, okay, she knew what was happening. sort of. she just couldn't figure out what she was supposed to do.

standing right there on 78th and Amsterdam, kissing.

she almost started laughing and gave up. she thought if she just disengaged, turned around, and walked away, she might be spared the embarrassment.

but eventually they figured it out. reached a tentative meeting of minds. and mouths.

she loved that he turned around right there on the corner--as if driven by his own wonder and curiosity. loved that he had to take his glasses off. loved that he was suddenly a boy, transformed by his own excitement.

because never had she felt more beautiful.

and so when it all ended, she would laugh about just how uncomfortable that first kiss was, but choose to remember that moment when he could just no longer wait--that moment when a grown man became a boy. and she began to fall.

studying strangers.

she was in love with the skin around his eyes.

does that sound strange? it wasn't. it was the most natural thing in the world.

in love with its perfect fragility. its paper-thin translucence.

evidence of something deeply felt and known. evidence of an entire life.

but lying side by side on the floor of the dimly lit living room she looked at that area just around his eyes and wondered if there was not too much life before her--too much life before this moment. a life so full there was just no room.

in the days and weeks and months and years following his disappearance, following the slow withdrawl of his presence, she studied the eyes of many a man she passed. on the street. in a movie theatre. sitting in restaurants. she would get herself into trouble by looking for too long at strangers on the train.

she was fine.

really okay.

but every once in a while she would look up and catch a glimpse of him in a stranger. see those same careless lines leaning in. leading up and around. providing some kind of indiscernible road map.

and it was that that she missed.

that which would undo her.