Life is a Circle

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i chop tomatoes, pretending my life has purpose.

in my head, i say phrases like, "bone-chillingly cold" for no apparent reason.

i gain a detached sense of comfort from not talking to my father, a badge of accomplishment that i award myself for ignoring him, as he used to ignore me.

i watch him run across the back yard in his rubber boots, feeling more like a mother watching her child than a daughter her father. i feel uncomfortable and look away.

the house smells like mayonnaise. i rinse the giant bowl in the sink; my mother has made a pasta salad for some old people. i think about the cold, slippery pasta with it's slimy coat of mayonnaise and cringe. i think about the old people chewing the pasta, getting mayonnaise on their lips and not licking it off. that's worse, so i think about something else.

but nothing comes to mind.

my feet are sore. sort of a dull ache. my head feels detached from my body; i'm almost faint with hunger. four pieces of sushi 12 hours ago apparently wasn't meant to tide me over until morning.

my sister is making breakfast. that's why i chopped the tomatoes. i can't cook. i always mess up something. or at least that's what i tell myself. i wonder if i was to try, without anyone around, if i could make food as good as my sister's. i think about muffins and cookies. i've baked both in the past month and both have turned out. i remember being proud for not burning the cookies.

i listen to the rain, absent-minded, and begin to enjoy the dull ache in my feet. it makes me feel complete, in a weird sort of way, with no reason behind it. i like reason. but it isn't always the very thing i'm looking for.

time is passing, just like it always does, only this time it's going much faster than it used to. i feel cold, exposed. i think about sweaters and fall and snow and christmas. time is an enemy, or maybe a friend in disguise. it's hard to tell at this point.

i eat a peach, the fresh juice dripping off my fingers and sliding down my throat.

my mother comes home, and her voice brightens something within me. i realize until she came back, i was scared, but i hadn't noticed yet. i wonder why i was scared, and what it is about my mother's presence that makes the fear disappear. i confuse myself. sometimes it's easier to stop thinking and just focus on one second of life at a time. i think about each individual breath i am taking. i lie down. i fall asleep.

i am amazed how different my sister and i are from each other. i find false nails in the bathroom drawer - white-tipped and plastic. i have never worn fake nails, never had any desire to wear them. i look at them for a moment in mild curiosity and disdain, and then continue looking for the toothpaste.

it is only when i have located the toothpaste and reach for a toothbrush that i realize i have forgotten which one is mine. i have memorized it from placement in the toothbrush rack, and not by colour or shape. i try picking up the different toothbrushes, but none feel right in my hand. i turn off the light and leave the bathroom, unable to cope with my own forgetfulness.

i buy a book. it's on sale. the count of monte cristo. i've seen the movie, never read it. it costs $4.99. i feel good about buying so many words for so little. that makes me think of wheel of fortune, and buying vowels. words are free when they are spoken, but as soon as they are written, they fetch a price. i pretend to understand this, like all the other things in life i can't figure out. it helps me feel normal if i go through life in denial. i've been told this isn't healthy, but of course, i'm in denial about that, as well.

my mother is on the internet. living in the middle of nowhere has it's advantages and disadvantages. one of the latter is that dial-up is the only kind of internet available, and my parents only want one phone line. i wonder what she does online. i wonder if she wonders the same of me. i doubt it, she probably has better things to do with her time.

i remember the smell of belize. it's been almost 3 years since i was there, but, because i hoard everything, i still have incense sticks left that i bought from a crack dealer on the street. i sit in my room, the stifling heat suffocating, with the scent of frankincense heavy in the air, the sound of tegan and sara singing dolefully about staying forever in the background. i think about forever for a while, and then get confused and leave the room, the scent and the sound trailing after me like ghosts until they dissipate into thin air and i am far away, a new thought in my mind, oblivious to the fact that the sound and the scent still exist somewhere else in the house.

there is a chair in the middle of my room. i don't recall how it got there, and i can't figure out what it's purpose could be in being placed there, but it is in fact there, so i sit on it. it's wood, and creaky. i feel so displaced, sitting on a random chair in the middle of my bedroom. i feel as though i am on display for a room full of invisible people. i sense their eyes on me, judging me.

i remember all the people who have told me that they just want someone to understand them. it seems like a hot commodity... but i have never understood it. what's the fun in having someone understand you? doesn't that take away your own uniqueness? i can imagine it: feeling exposed to someone that wholly. i wouldn't know how to react. no one can ever fully understand another human being. it's a fact of life, or at least a fact of my life. i wonder why people crave that, being understood. why crave something unattainable? even possible things are hard enough to obtain, so why make it that much more difficult?

i am baffled. life is so redundant i am bored with it. the repetitions of day to day habits and rituals cause me to cry out for something, anything, to change. spice things up a little. i am disappointed. the sun has set, and nothing has changed. is this how it always has been? worse still, is this how it always will be? i am afraid to hear the answer.

knowing i will never solve all the common questions asked in life in one day, i release my body to sleep, my mind to dreams, my soul to bemoan it's lack of fulfillment. in sleep, i rejoice. in sleep, i tremble with fear. in sleep, i know nothing, and remember even less when morning comes again, bringing with it a new day, filled with new questions that i know ahead of time i won't find the answers too.

it's raining again, the sound lulling me gently into a false sense of security. i recall something i said that day to my boyfriend on the phone. he had laughed at it, then couldn't understand it when i tried to explain it. i am used to people not getting my ideas, and i don't cry out for them to be understood, only heard and tolerated. i told him that life - at least, my life - was a circle.

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