I am having a hard time.
Tonight seems a bit better, but last night I felt totally insane and I continued to feel insane in the morning.
On Wednesday, I saw C, as I described in an earlier post. That had something to do with it. In the morning, during first period, which is usually a time I am alone or nearly alone in the staff room, I was writing something. I hadn’t brought my laptop charger and there was no battery—very frustrating—but I was writing by hand. I was thinking about meeting C and touching her. I was thinking about that, how it feels so good to touch her.
And then suddenly VP Ma’am walked in. She had some English question, which I answered and then when the question was answered, she lingered—I think sensing that I didn’t want her to stay very long, but not wishing to go.
At that point, I needed to shift my thoughts toward teaching my next class. But she lingered, and I then did not have time to prepare for my class, and I had to go late to my class. It was only a matter of minutes, but it seems like that frequently happens. I know how long five minutes is. If I have a lot I want to do, then there will only be five minutes to do it, and if someone comes along and hems and haws through those five minutes, I cannot do much to hurry it along. Usually, they don’t. And then suddenly someone does.
I went to my class and managed as best I could, but I was really quite livid from feeling trapped into this conversation, when I had been in the middle of this time with myself that I really needed to have. The whole day was hard, but I suppose I managed. Pretty much, as soon as I was alone again, I felt insane. Just more and more insane.
This morning, I got up really early, thinking I would get some work done. I am behind on nearly everything I ought to be doing. Instead, I realized I needed to process and calm down. By 8 am, I felt almost normal. Then I was reading an article online in the staffroom and very much enjoying reading it, and VP Ma’am came in again with some other question. I don’t really mind her questions. It’s just sometimes I wonder, why then? Does she know I need time alone? She might.
I have noticed that people actually are responding to me. Not all of the time, but some of the time they are. After lunch, when I had a free period, I was very intent on my work, and one of the National Language teachers came in. I knew it was her, but I didn’t look up, and she was as it turned out carrying a staple gun and shot it off to get my attention. She sad, in fact, it was to get my attention and to interrupt me, and made a joke about it. But there are these times when I am very intent on something and enjoying myself and my work, and someone does something to get attention, because they don’t like that.
Before first period, another teacher came into the staffroom making loud attention-grabbing noises like a small boy. (He is one of the oldest men on the staff, so imagine someone in his 60s). He does that. I began to deal with this by telling him Good morning or whatever when he came in the room, because it is so clearly about attention.
The thing is they want attention when I am working, and it makes no difference to them that I lose my train of thought, I lose all of the pleasure of working, because they feel left out of what I am doing and so they want me to stop doing it. So it very well might be that VP Ma’am saw me doing something intently and felt impulsively like she wanted my attention.
Anyway, what I was reading online was about late-term abortion for medical reasons—it was someone’s personal story. After VP Ma’am left I began to think about why that was such a tender moment for me, and why I felt so enraged at her interrupting me from it and then prolonging the interruption. And it made me realized that while I don’t feel at all sure of what really happened to me in childhood, some things seem like they did happen.
I think I did have a miscarriage. Things are starting to connect in my mind in a way that makes my life make real sense instead of a forced sense. There are feelings inside that provide resonance and authenticity and make it possible to make connections between events. I had that miscarriage in 8th grade, I think, and later, taking biology classes and learning about genetic diseases, I think there was a sense of recognition, like, “Oh, the baby might have died because there was something wrong with it. It might not have been that I was a bad mother and couldn’t protect her.” And there is a feeling inside about it. I am not just putting together logical pieces or things I might have just as easily imagined.
I am having feelings, authentic feelings, not dissociated guesswork, but real feelings inside my body, and it is creating an entirely different experience for me. I am starting to be able to link events in my life in the present as well as the past, because the feelings are there inside me. That’s probably why I felt so insane. Me. Shameful. Deserve to die.
There is something about this that I think relates to C. Emotionally, there is a linkage. It feels so good to touch C, to feel that she has all of her body parts, and she is okay. It feels really, really good. She’s my baby. She isn’t that baby. She isn’t the baby I lost, but I do call her baby. She is this evidence for me that life goes on. Somehow it also seems important to me that I am the same person. These are the same hands, even if they are a lot older. The same hands that held my tiny, dead fetus strokes C’s hair.