27 October 2014

0 reading week

i never went to a school that had a fall break. so i keep calling this week in the middle of term where we don't have to teach "spring break", and debo keeps correcting me and saying, exasperated, but it's not spring. 

my run-up to reading week, ie. this week, was last week, which looked like this:

wednesday, i talked extemporaneously to a room full of people about how, in writing about jackie, my politics are combined with my practice. (i'm a big advocate for taking moments to recognize progress, so let's all- because you are in this with me- take a moment and appreciate the fact that we have, the whole lot of us, come a hell of a long way since this.)

thursday, i had lecture and seminar prep and supervision, where i was diagnosed as having "tonal problems."

friday, i discovered that my access to ££££ ends pretty much THE VERY MOMENT i hand in my dissertation and i taught a class that was evaluated by the overseer of teaching assistants AND i went to an information on post-docs, which was like treading water amid a herd of sharks in a ocean full of bleeding people.

saturday, i got a flu shot and took to my bed. and all the anxiety of those last three days siphoned off into this wacko hypochondria.

suddenly, everything meant i must be dying.

that pain in my chest? HEART ATTACK. (ie. too much plank in friday's yoga practice.)

that inexplicable cut on my foot? SPONTANEOUS EXTERNAL BLEEDING. (ie. wtf?)

that four day tension headache? BRAIN TUMOR. (ie. stress.)

because somehow all of that seemed more manageable than my one day, in a future that with the revelation that my access to ££££ ends pretty much THE VERY MOMENT i hand in my dissertation suddenly zoomed about five to six months closer, having to leave london.

the brain is weird. how it deflects. how it goes to all these contortions, actively manipulates itself to avoid hard truths. and how that translates into far more ludicrous, less real worries, like this cut on my ankle that i don't know how i got must totally signify some fatal blood eruption... my blood is breaching the boundaries of my body! a self-diagnosis that is clearly ridiculous, and yet somehow strangely soothing in the present in the face of a greater, far-off unknown.

the unknowns are a can of worms, pulling out one pulls out another and they all look really gross.

it is a good time to go to paris.

i mean, it is never not a good time to go to paris, but it is especially good that i am going to paris tomorrow. where there is a balcony and a bathtub and the best falafel in europe. paris is where i decide to do things.

i actually work well with endpoints, with deadlines, with the threat that everything i love will ultimately be taken away. it can be paralyzing, but it can also focus the mind in ways everyday life cannot.

21 september 2013. look how well that turned out.

we do not know what is coming. we do not know what is next.

reminder: here's how you fly on a trapeze:

you climb a freakishly skinny ladder.
you get buckled into a harness.
you stand at the edge of a platform.
you grip a bar with your two hands.
you bend your two knees.
you take one hop into nothingness.
you swing through the air.
you put your knees back over the bar.
you let go.

you fling yourself into the future. and you let go.

5 january 2016.

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