Letters to Mabel

Every Single Day in March, write an entry, leading up to April 1 and your surgery. Every day that you WOD, write an entry. Start in the morning, finish at night. Whatever it takes.

all cosuming fire.

With another weekend in the rearview mirror I find myself at my desk again on a Monday feeling wracked with anxiety.  My one burning question other than how can I  make myself feel better, where does this incredible feeling of dread come from?  Is it chemical, environmental, hereditary? Because if I could figure out the source perhaps I could eliminate its debilitating presence in my life.

I woke up early on Sunday morning, not as hung over as one might expect after countless sifters of tequila, on top of red and white wine. I do not remember the cab ride home, or the chicken fingers at juniors at 2am with one of my fellow athletes. It’s all so terribly foggy. I wonder if this is what it feels like to get married, you work so hard and so long on something and then the day finally arrives and its over in an instant and if you choose to drink at all, it passes in a blur of snap shots and familiar faces. You wonder if people could tell that you had too much to drink, you hope you didn’t offend anyone, and if you’re like me, you beat yourself up for the next 24 hours with fear that you might have done something really dumb and embarrassing.

But from what I can piece together, I did not. I’m so mindful, so paranoid about doing something stupid, I’m trusting that I was on my best behavior. Although scrolling through some of the photos on FB it hits me that I do not remember a majority of them being taken which raises the flag that if I did do something dumb there’s a chance I do not remember it.

Sitting here and bobbing in this sea of fear I’m forced to ask myself yet again, why the fuck do I do this to myself? Drink too much, wake up exhausted and worried that I did something dumb. Why. For what purpose? When, WHEN has anything good ever come from this behavior? Never.  

If I look past the booze and the regret, I am also left with feelings of being alone. I want so desperately to connect with people in this community, I bounce from encounter to encounter, sucking the marrow of human contact and connection. Something I dreadfully lack in my person life. I am alone at home, I am alone here at work. I am not alone when I get to ACF, I am surrounded by a community of athletes. We communicate and connect over CrossFit, the verbiage, the learned understanding of how what it means to CrossFit, the shared knowledge of the sport which can only be gained through time and hard work and a commitment to the sport.

There is not doubt of my commitment. I am there almost every day. The hardest part for me seems to be in drawing boundaries with the relationships that result. Or maybe not. I watch other athletes spend time together outside of the gym and I wonder why I do not fit in better. I watch them live as housemates and play softball together and go swimming of the dock in summer and think, why wasn’t I invited. I get jealous and feel left out. These feelings surfacing at the most awkward and unexpected moments. It’s dreadful. I want the best for those around me, but truly want to be included in the process, I want that person, that community, to throw their arms around me and tell me they love me and take my hand and say come with us.

Dear God I am lonely. With no family of my own, as I age, I’m afraid I’m in grave danger of appearing dreadfully spinster-like. This would be terrible. Maybe this is the place from where are all the fear grows. Growing old and loneliness. The two wrapped together in a complicated blanket that does not provide warmth but rather smothers you, ensnarls you as you attempt to swim to the surface, drowns you. If this is the place from which I continue to act, then I will simply know more of the same. Alcohol, the hangover, the dread, opens the growing old and being alone spicket and turns it up past 10 to 11. Alcohol and being hung-over is kerosene on this voluminous all consuming fire.

cold shoulder

Last night as I walked into class, eyes bright, happy to say hello to L. He felt awkward and goofy and kind of just stood there. The exchange went like this;

Me, looking directly at him and walking towards him: Hey, how you are you?

Him: what?

Me: how’s it going?

Him: Oh, fine. Thanks.

As the chill of his reaction reached me I looked away and happened to catch T’s stare. In the moment we locked eyes I knew he could tell exactly what was happening; there was a one way crush unfolding before his eyes and I was the one being crushed.


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