Last night I woke up at around 1:30 am as E was going to sleep. I felt under the pillows for my big, black, nerdy glasses and was instantly annoyed when he reached on his side of the bed for them. You have to understand I prefer to sleep with my glasses on; in fact, I think E pulled them off my face thinking he was doing me a favor, which he does a couple nights out the week. Usually he puts them on my nightstand.
Seeing is everything for me. I see to understand. When I write, I see the words as colors, shapes, or abstract things that need to be arranged like 2D, imaginary, poetry/prose paintings. I love my mind's eye. I should have that printed on a t-shirt. (Don't steal it--karma is real.) When I think ahead about times and months down the line, I see it. It's like a weird calender/life/picture/vision/photograph amalgamation of the past and what I imagine that future month will be. And it is so translucent, so veiled--like gossomer. If I allow myself to linger and ponder it to much--poof! it's gone. Those are my gossomer moments. I've had them since I can remember and have learned to let them float in the space they crave. I know that all sounds crazy, but hey, I'm giving you a peak into a creative mind. Talk to God about it, it's the way I was made.
But I'm going off on a tangent here; I promise I'll get back to the seeing/glassess/sleeping thing.
So I woke up, E hid my glasses, I got them back from him, he started snooring, I kicked him to signal him to turn over, he grumbled then obliged me, and then I started thinking.
I wanted to write a letter to God. I got all Cellie on myself and wanted to grab my cobalt mbp and "Dear God" it. I was writing the words in my brain over and over again. I was stuck on the Dear-God-Comma part. Because after the comma my brain would start writing/telling God all I wanted this year, and how I was being good and focused, and how I thought I was a good person, etc. It started sounding very christmas list to santa to me so I did not pick up my cobalt writer. Nope. You see I had to nudge E again, which always annoy me because he tells me he's just breathing. All lies. And then I wanted to wake him up because I couldn't stop writing my Cellie letter and I thought, "If I wake E up, make him sit-up so he would really pay attention, tell him the letter that I want to write to God, ask his advice--what will he tell me."
*Insert nasty feelings of guilt*
E does not believe we should ever--under any circumstances--ask God for things. He thinks it is not religiously correct. I was already swiminning in religious guilt when I told him before falling asleep at 10pm, "I know that you want to read the Bible together as a family tonight--but my eyes hurt, I'm sleepy, and I need to wake up early in the morning to read classical critical theory."
So anyway, I did not wake E up and I did not mimic Cellie. Instead I watched two dvr recordings of the Nate Berkus show, before watching my favorite insomniac show whose title I can't remember because I'm usually half sleep (ABC 2am-4:30am). In between fast forwarding commercials and watching commercials I spoke to God. Very politely.
I thanked. I expressed gratitude. I aired my desires.
"All I really want," I whispered to the ceiling, "Is some advice--a nod that I'm going down the right path, and perhaps some suggestions and assurance that if I keep up my end of the bargain (working hard) you'll keep me where I need to be (which I know may not be where I want to be.)"
If you haven't guessed yet--I'm still obessesing over graduate school. Not if I want to do it, but if I'm good enough to get in. (I'm insecure and I can admit it.)
In true God style the fan I use to drown out E's snooring kept whirling, and the t.v. show eventually put me to sleep. Soon.
Enter crazy, vivid dream that felt so real it took me 30 minutes to shake out of it's reality when I woke up.
I dreamed me and E went back to the PAL Center in San Berdo where we met and that girl who almost had a chance to date my precious E was still working there (I silently smiled and told myself to remind E that I saved him from her soon as we got into the car.), Dr. Henry offered me a job, Lawrence was being Lawrence, Tammy was being busy Tammy, Jerry was walking quickly from bungalow to bungalow, and everyone was happy that we were still married 13 years later, and of course was pissed we didn't bring the kids. (Where were they at?) They were building a new, bigger Pal Center and the entire orginal office bungalow was being bronzed. Yeap, the whole building.
I woke up, I read, I ate my toast with mango butter, I told E about the dream, he told me he ran into Lawrence last week, I told him "crazy, ironic--why didn't you tell me," he told me he forgot, the end. Almost.
I went on to call him again and loathe the writing sample I'm thinking about using for my MFA manuscript, then hung up because I needed to "let him do work".
And then it happens. I remember an experimental piece I wrote last summer in a creative writing class at my university. I pull it up, I read it, I re-love it.
Guess where it is set? The area around the PAL Center. Yes, I smiled a smug smile when I said that out loud as I typed it.
So now, you are reading my thank-you letter to God.
I had completely and utterly forgotten about those 14 pages of wonderfulness.
What does this have to do with my big, black, nerdy glasses? The ability to see...duh! See the truth in situations, clear vision, follow me? Let me sleep with my glasses so I can always have clarity in my dreams...hokey I know. But, to a visual artist sight is every-damn-thing. I don't see colors well without my glasses. True story.
What do you know about writing?
Do you know how hard it is to switch from academic writing to creative writing? Do you know how incredible hard it is to have characters show up, trust you, and tell you their stories? Do you know how much of a brain shift you have to do to go from writing critical essays about literature to writing your own literature? Do you realize that I write creatively in southeren dialect (because that's how my characters tend to talk...and hey I'm just the typist) and academically I was accused by my last professor in my Research and Writing class for writing too sophisticated. She actually dared to give me a low A--which I challenged and she changed because she agreed my intended audience needed that sort of language. Do you realize the mental acrobatics and tongue twisting writing I will have to do this year to finish my BA and get my manuscript in order for graduate school?
I know all these things--and hello! that's why I'm obsessed and waking up at 1:30 am acting like Cellie.
But, this is the part in the letter to God when I express gratitude for restoring my belief in my voice and for those gentle gossomer moments, and vivid dreams that allow me to be creative and remember that is the way I'm made.
E is not made like me. I'm not sure if any of the kids have wacky artist tendencies yet, so I am on my own around this house in my skiddish, artist ways. I have artist friends that I are like me. But I also have fellow Type-A personality classmates that are really like me.
I'm an amalgamation, like most people, but I'm just crazy enough to share it. I tell E all the time he doesn't understand what it's like to be an artist-type, because he doesn't. Life is all too easy for him and his type. Numbers are neat...they add, they subtract, they multiply and divide, hell they even do tricks like plathagoream theory stuff and other weird things I learned in AP calculus and physics in '95.
Writing, painting, poetry writing, daydreaming is not neat like the rest of the world.
So before I make a mad dash to University tonight...let me encourage you to do something...
Hug an artist if you know one...especially us word picture artist.
And while your at it, take time to thank God for everything.
P.s. I have no time for spell, grammar, and punctuation check...so consider me a painter today instead of a self-professed, grammar-loving nerd. Because in all honest...that nerdiness does not come naturally...I actually have to work at all that wonderfulness.