Thursday, January 03, 2008

Tales from the Crazy

The Screenwriter was a bad idea. Or maybe I'm just a bad idea in general -- for anyone. The phrase "shame spiral" doesn't even adequately describe what I went through all day on the 31st. I worked on my freelance projects. I cleaned my home with actual cleaning products. I tried not to think about N, and I tried not to think about my behavior with the Screenwriter the previous night and that morning, when I put on my best Lauren Bacall voice in the early sunlight and pretended everything was fine.

What I realized that evening was that I didn't want to be freezing my ass off over sandwiches and flasks somewhere deep in Central Park, watching fireworks with someone I felt nothing for -- someone with whom I'd had quick and fleeting intimacy, and someone with whom it might have worked out if this were another time. If he didn't live in L.A. If he were older and less arrogant. If I wasn't in love with N.

I texted Sunny around 7 p.m. to tell her definitively that I was going to go out with her for the night (whether she liked it or not). I sent the Screenwriter a lame text message, cancelling. I haven't heard from him since. I drank a bottle of barbera d'asti before going out on New Year's Eve. That's pretty much the norm for New Year's where I'm concerned; the wine wasn't even the problem that night. The problem was my mind. The problem always HAS been my mind, and it's just now that I'm starting to realize that and beginning not to blame the boys with their distance and their nonexistant or half-hearted attempts at love for my depression and anxiety.

We ended up in Greenpoint at a bar whose name I wish I could remember, because it was so fun. I looked pretty, with red lipstick and curled blond hair and black patent-leather Mary Jane heels. I smiled and laughed and danced on banquettes and asked for shots of Jack Daniel's to go with my Bud Lights. I never remember this when my mental state is not right, but Jack is rarely to never a good idea for me.

As we left, I put a half-full Bud Light bottle in my coat, as if I were in college, and I drank it in the taxi ride to the next venue: a beautiful loft in Williamsburg -- a huge space with a large cream-colored couch, high ceilings, and a full kitchen.

I don't remember much more about the loft, but I remember text-messaging while perched on the couch's arm. I remember telling Sunny I was hammered, that I was leaving, and I remember sinking down and sitting outside the door, in the building's hallway, my legs, in those beautiful Mary Janes, straight out in front of me, and leaving N a voice mail-message.

I woke up alone in my own bed at 9:30 a.m. the next day, thank God. New Year's was a poor showing; I'd gotten irreparably drunk in three hours, which is pitiful for an alcoholic like me. I looked through my text-message inbox: a benign "Happy New Year!!" from N, a nice check-in from Sunny, a sweet message from a stoner I used to date for distraction. That's when I started to cry and didn't stop for an hour or maybe more. I bought $400 worth of furniture and bedding at an UES home decor place that always calms me on a whim, clutching the plastic-wrapped packages, yanking them off the shelves, and pulling them toward my chest to hear the noise and feel the tactile pressure. I didn't shower that day.

Wild-eyed and desperate, I somehow ended up at N's later on the 1st, teary and sad and a bit drunk. He held me and fed me chicken and Xanax. He did what he could to the best of his ability. I convinced him to let me stay over, even though I could tell he didn't want me there. I asked him if he hated me. (He said no.) I asked him if he still liked me. (He said yes.) I asked him if he still wanted to hang out with me, after all of this -- after I had scared him and after he had seen my true crazy. (He said yes.)

I can imagine how this sounds.

I don't even like how this sounds. Being self-destructive is sexy if you're rich, but if you're not...? God help you.

I went to work today showered (I came all the way back to the Upper East from N's place) and feeling motivated to change. I called psychotherapists (only Ph.D's -- no social workers, please) for new appointments. I bought hundreds of dollars' worth of more furniture online. I checked items off of my to-do list. I worked as hard as I felt was necessary. I e-mailed lightly with N. He thoughtfully suggested a therapist for me that one of his friends likes. I loved that. I finished some more freelance work. I worked late and hard and tried my best.

This will pass. N will pass. I know that. The key is -- until then -- keeping my head above water and my mind wrapped around my work, my bills, my finances, and my psychological well-being until it/he does pass. The problems start when all the other stuff falls by the wayside, and I am still -- STILL -- too smart for that, despite my staggering romantic ineptitude.

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Blogger Kb said...

Talking to someone is a great idea. I did for several years and half the time they were a great (well paid) cheerleader for me. Sister, build a "Temple of Jane" keep the white noise of N and others males blocked out. Play positive games with yourself... for every thought of N make yourself think of 5 positive things solely about Jane.
That'll be $82.50. ;) Have a great day!

7:25 AM  
Blogger NewbietoNYC said...

You're so cute, kb. Thank you!!

1:35 PM  

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