21 January 2017

0 the cubs are world champions

on election day, i was in a hospital in america. and also on the morning after, when it was like everything was in slow motion and i felt hollowed out and simultaneously overly sensitive and deeply numb and that chorus of all the little girls are watching, all the little girls are watching kept racing through my head.

i was in a hospital in the UK when the inauguration was occurring. switching between explaining the difference between the american and national baseball leagues and emphasizing the importance of The Peaceful Transition of Power.

i repeat this phrase- a phrase i do not know that i have ever before uttered- so many times that i wonder whether it might have been something we were taught for the AP government exam.

returning home, after a bus ride that inexplicably lasted an eternity, during the entirety of which i read inauguration news coverage and felt drop by drop the dread building in my heart, i crumpled into a ball by the door of my flat.

my flat is small. there is not a lot of room for emotion.

i've vague memories of careening about my prior london flat (the one with the two rooms... A PALACE, people), throwing my emotions about. now, i am contained, compressed. i keep my arms tight against my body, the fists balled against the pink fur coat, eyes cast heavenward, crying and not entirely sure why.

there are days when i feel especially far from my country.

there are days when my country feels an especially sad place.

there are days when it does not feel like mine.

and there are days when i am keenly aware of how my country affects the whole world.

they said the odds that the cubs could come back in the world series three games down were the same chances that the election would go the way it did.

i often forget that the cubs are world champions. i am reminded of the president every fucking day.

i’ve avoided jmills for months. because things have seemed so uncertain and because she occupies a unique place in my life as the bearer of great love and the teller of harsh truths.

i want to be better for her. and i don’t know that there’s any other relationship in my life to which that statement applies in quite the same way.

early this morning, i wanted to speak with her and only her. and it was like cold water on a hot day.

and so i put on the pink coat and a silver dress and i went down to trafalgar square by myself.

because it was one of those days when only americans will do. when no one else gets it.

this is something you never experience if you always live in your own country and something with which you constantly attempt to come to terms if you live in another.

it is sometimes better to be alone than to be with people coping with the same loss under different circumstances. 

and i stood there in the cold, my feet turning to popsicles (reminded of how donovan would call me "caroline popsicle," reminded of men i have loved who have been in hospitals), standing next to a little girl with curly blonde ringlets, who wanted nothing more than to take off her coat and dive into the fountain at trafalgar square. 

and i remembered that morning, watching Her, thinking all the little girls are watching, all the little girls are watching

i am so grateful that STZ and i are Doing Something, so sad that there is still so so much to be done. and also galvanized, because there are so many people to do it. 

i was struck, in writing the jackie book, that the thing we all have in common- everyone around the world- is that we are all alive in this moment. 

life is fragile. we do not know what will happen next. i'm not too worried about it, garebear tells me on the night of the inaugural, because i probably won't live to see the end

and i'm like, DUDE. because there is so much to be done. there is so much yet to do. 

all day, STZ sends me texts with fire emojis. 🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥🔥

because we are not doing nothing, we are doing something.

henri cartier-bresson: "it’s a way of saying yes, yes, yes... Its yes, yes, yes. And there is no maybe."


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