The last few months have left me feeling pretty shattered. My friend Alex said, “It’s been a rough back half of the year for sure,” and I responded with, “Backhand of the year, more like.” Because I am a comedienne extraordinaire. It has been one thing after another after another, until I find myself cracked and flayed and gasping for breath.
My first instinct is to run. After the latest backhand, I immediately began fantasizing about ways I could get away from everything: find a job in a remote mountain town, drive the car down to Southern California and spend the foreseeable future sleeping on the beach, hole myself up in a cabin in the middle of nowhere. I want to be away. I want to tuck myself in somewhere where I’ll be all padded and cosy like a fragile crystal vase in a UPS package, where I’ll be protected from anymore of life’s “jokes” so I can just heal.
But I know I can’t just run away. I can’t out run my problems or run them out (though sweating through the issues seems to help a little bit, if only to clear my head). No matter where I go, I bring all my problems with me. All of my problems and all of myself. Wherever you go, there you are. Relocating myself won’t make me any different. And it won’t protect me from anything. There is nowhere in the world I can go where life wouldn’t catch up with me eventually.
And so I must just stay here and fight through it. Face up to my pain every day and go on living my life while I do it. I open my eyes every morning and for a few seconds, I feel as fresh and new as new-fallen snow, like nothing bad or painful has ever happened to me and there are infinite possibilities awaiting me in the hours to come.
When those few seconds pass, and the world and the past and my pain crash down on me once more, I try to hold onto those few seconds I was free, to carry them with me like a talisman. A reminder that, no matter what happens, for a few seconds every day, I get to start fresh.