" "What day is today?" Aureliano told him that it was Tuesday. "I was thinking the same thing," José Arcadio Buendía said, "but suddenly I realized that it's still Monday, like yesterday. Look at the sky, look at the walls, look at the begonias. Today is Monday too. [...] On the next day, Wednesday, José Arcadio Buendía went back to the workshop. "This is a disaster," he said. "Look at the air, listen to the buzzing of the sun, the same as yesterday and the day before. Today is Monday too." "
And it's ironic because I keep telling myself that I've changed a lot. And I have. It's only now that I'm actually starting to feel it; like I'm almost disconnected from who I used to be: emotional and fragile and tears on my pink pillowcase (that has started to fade). Now face stern, emotions disconnected, determined, untouched. I haven't cried in a very long time. I don't know how I feel about that change within me. Maybe I desire to again feel everything all at once because maybe that's better than feeling this; not happiness but not sadness, caught in a limbo, a homemade void, but not one of darkness and anger. nothingness, perhaps. It feels strange and unproductive. So once again I turn to meaningless highs, spending weekends in the bed of strangers of Boston's back streets back bay questioning what the hell I'm doing. I thought I came here to escape that, exactly.
OK. End of thought dump. I hope you're well. Send Eve my regards.
I’ve been trying to find time to write this for what seems like eternity now. life here is hectic (but in a good way, mostly). I find my days filled with knowledge I can’t wait to absorb and process, readings that I clutter with notes, hours projecting in the climbing gym, candles burning on my desk and leaves casting shadows on my wooden dormitory floor. life here is different — still trying to find a balance between healthy solitude and utter loneliness; in many ways still hoping i will find my people, but in many ways also reluctant to search. I find an old habit of reticence coming to the surface, an unwillingness to engage, fully. most of all it’s almost scary how comfortable silence has become.
I find comfort in music (rostam’s first/new album dropped today, and you should definitely give it a listen) and I keep myself occupied with work. I eat most of my meals alone, accompanied a book and my headphones, and it feels strangely okay. I also find pleasure in company, of course, but it can never compare to the strong feeling of community that UWC carried. the relationships just aren’t even close to being the same - and I wonder if maybe it’s best that way. I find amiability in most people here. it’s really not that. maybe i’ve already gotten too comfortable. I don’t really know.
I’m still struggling to find my voice in classes; something I did struggle with at uwc too. I raise my hand to start trembling out of nervosity just from getting the opportunity to speak and so I lose words among tangled thoughts they become intertwined and I stumble across them and it’s like one big word vomit full of ideas but none of them formulated well enough to actually make sense. and so I get even more nervous, feeling my cheeks turn hot and turn red and I stutter and... people are so intelligent here and it’s intimidating. I’m still struggling with the thought of myself being one of them.
other than that, campus is green and beautiful and i really like it here. I feel more comfortable than I thought I would this early on in the year, and that in itself makes me both happy and proud of myself.
I miss you a TON.
what a weird couple of days that have passed since I last wrote you (a mere six days ago). it feels as if life has been completely left up to fate; like someone is just throwing a dice determining what is going to happen next. super confusing. maybe I could describe it better by saying that if I were to be a village, there has been a storm coming in (unexpectedly) every single day, trying to ruffle every single nook and cranny of me; rumbling every household and every living thing to get some kind of response. rustling leaves and fallen heroes. and here I am, trying to resist, to persist, to stand strong.
or maybe I could describe it better by saying that if I were to be a citizen of that village, the wind would be blowing through my hair so violently that it’d get all over my face, covering my eyes and vision, and I’d be holding onto a tree branch in order to not get blown away. but little do I know the tree branch is so thin it’s going to break if I don’t let go and find another branch when the winds calm down but then again it's blurring my vision and the calms are so unexpected that I wouldn’t know when to let go anyway. and so soon the branch will break and the wind will carry me away as I view the world underneath me, cracking and cackling and gasping to stay alive. and the tears in my eyes won’t just be from the harsh wind drying them out. i'll cry for my city and i'll cry for myself. but it’ll be too late. (or will it?)
sorry, now it happened again. yet another one of life’s unexpected and disgustingly unfortunate turns. this one is more silly though (don’t laugh at me). I'm currently writing at the kitchen table. it's a beautiful day so I left the back door open. and now I just had to run away because there was a butterfly that made its way into our kitchen and kept flapping its wings at the window because it couldn’t find its way out again. and so I had to actually run away into a different room where I remained paranoid and scared until the flapping stopped and now I’m really just hoping it’s not gonna creep up on me but that it found its way out. help. haha. wow. that really stopped my writing flow. sorry.
i miss you
l is wearing a maroon t-shirt, blue jeans, and his green adidas sneakers. last time i saw him he was matching the military green of his sneakers with the sleeves of a baseball shirt; and underneath it he wore a military green vest. I remember because I wanted to ask him if green was his favorite color, because his burton backpack was green as well. it went well with his beige baseball hat. today he’s wearing a black one. when I first encounter him he’s talking to a friend. I don’t know whether or not to interrupt and so I stand awkwardly until he signals he’s seen me and hints for me to come over. I give him a hug and shake his friend’s hand. he’s called Fabian and apparently he’s been wanting to try out climbing. or at least that’s what l tells me. ”we keep saying we should go, but it just never happens”, he says. they both look old; a lot older than me. like grown-ups. I look like a 16 year old in comparison, although in reality there’s only a year separating us. they end their conversation with ”we’ll have to grab a beer some time”. I remember because at the time I’m hit by some kind of hopelessness because that’s such a standard thing to say. ”we’ll have to grab a coffee some time” or ”let’s grab a beer some day”, and it’s all so loose and then it never happens because in the end you’re just trying to shut down small talk so that you can go do whatever you intended to do in the first place. or maybe that’s just me. and then l buys me a cappuccino and gets a cortado for himself. we’re at the corner of a coffee shop at Möllan, watching the world go by.
I like Malmö a lot. it’s a different pulse than the slow, steady one that you find in Lund. no traces of the boringness of academia and the posh elderly people living in professorstaden. Malmö is a melting pot; a meeting place; its diversity showcasing itself in all kinds of smells and flavors and people circulating Möllan. it’s nice. I never realized before how whitewashed and sheltered the place I grew up in was until now; the Spyken kids and their PC-ness, talking about acceptance and how open-minded they are, yet I know that if I were to bring in many of the people I met and encountered at UWC, they’d immediately shut down and shut out. no doubt about it. it becomes interesting because everything that seems to encounter us in our modern day society are confirmations of what we already believe. post-modernism. there are several truths (and therefore, no truth), and so everything that circulates around us are repetitions of what we already believe (and repetition is the only way through which we learn). it makes me wonder then how I should re-invent myself because there is no doubt I’m just as narrow-minded as those Spyken-kids, stuck in this invented reality of my own made-up open-mindedness yet so condescending to anyone who thinks differently (because if there are several truths then the one I believe in must be the truth, too).
I try bringing that idea up to l too, but I’m lost for words. it’s been a long time since I discussed these things in swedish — something I also notice when I’m trying to discuss the Google incident with my father. the words so clumsily leave my mouth and often times find their way in repetitions and saying things that I said just five minutes ago, trying to formulate and straighten out my thoughts for myself. it’s annoying and it makes me feel stupid. maybe that’s why I liked being with e — speaking in english felt comfortable. it was a continuous conversation I was used to having, that I knew how to express, and maybe that’s why I felt like we clicked so well. I don’t know. in any case my entire trying to bring it up with l ends in lots of distractions and not wanting to finish my train of thought because there seems to be no point: I don’t even understand myself what I’m trying to say. nothing formulates itself eloquently and I can’t get it to, and so I give up. sigh.
I miss e. with him it all came so naturally. I wonder why that is. maybe the concept of vibes isn’t so easy living and meme like anymore, but something that actually exists; an intangible presence and non-concrete thing, yet a more powerful force than most other things. sigh. self-validation's such a strange thing.
i am 20 now. yet another year. “i just don’t understand why people make such a big deal out of birthdays” i tell jackiel. i’m old now. it sucks. i wish it wasn’t my birthday.
i re-read andrew’s email over and over again and it hurts me a deep sort of pain that can’t be pinned down but is sensed in my entire body. reading what he has to tell me puts me to tears. if there is any one being i could attribute my entire being to, it would be andrew. andrew and doug. nobody else has ever had as big of an influence than they have had.
i think a lot about what andrew has to say. about art, and our place in this world, and about honesty and staying true to myself.
to be completely honest, the reason i chose to go to wellesley keeps hitting me in the face, over and over again. it’s been more than a month since i got here, now, and so little has changed. painfully little. it pains me.
i don’t even know what to say.
I read through a diary entry from a year ago. it’s about h. h, who I dreamt about last night; h, who never leaves my thoughts. like he’s inhibited his own little space in the back of my mind, resting peacefully until he pushes his way to the front. it hurts. it really does. I don’t know why he keeps coming back to me and I hate it so much. haunted by a thought, a feeling, something that doesn’t exist; a memory that maybe never was there to begin with.
in the end of the journal entry it says: “i sometimes wonder why I always feel the need to be better. I think he’s why. and i hate it so fucking much.” and it breaks my heart. like someone is stomping on it like it’s shattered on the ground splashed on the pavement no one’s watching but it’s there it’s beating red flesh exposed underneath the afternoon light the sun shining through the leaves changing color in the crisp october air.
how are things an exact repeat of last year? how can I not let this boy go? why is everything the same the same the same like my life is a for loop that doesn’t have a return and so it keeps going an INFINITE loop as we learned in cs today. it breaks my heart because i feel so weak
and maybe I am
despite how I ten minutes ago wrote “I feel more in touch with myself now than ever” IS THIS THE SELF THAT I AM? my eyes water
college is strange. it’s really now that I’m starting to reflect upon the past months that have been, and it’s only now that everything is slowly sinking in; or maybe washing over me. it’s kind of overwhelming. I’m not really sure how to feel.
it’s strange because I came here and adjusted so quickly and felt so at home that I never second-guessed my being here. when I Skype my mother she tells me: “You look so much happier now. You have no idea how happy your dad is that you’re finally smiling”. and it breaks my heart because I tell myself I am,
and now I tell myself that maybe I’m not. not sad but not happy. apathy, rather. ? maybe? i can’t tell. void…ness. like always. comfortable, familiar; like always. in english class the other day my professor joked and said “you know that void in your heart that you’re trying to fill? it might never fill. just… trust me on that one.” he laughed so I laughed too, but it stuck with me, something nudging my cold december heart, itching underneath. is this what life will always be like? why do I keep attributing apathy to happiness? because it’s better than sadness? but is it really? maybe once again I desire to feel everything all at once. I just want to feel something.
over the past months I’ve come to realize that my priorities have shifted a lot too. academically I’ve never performed worse than now; correlating of course to me caring less than ever before. and this is me. someone who used to be so disappointed when not receiving 7s, stressing out over every single paper and cramming so hard for exams. maybe it’s the shadow grading that first semester has to offer, or maybe I’ve just changed. I don’t know, but I can’t recognize myself anymore, and it's making me terribly confused. there are so many other things that I would rather focus on right now. so many other things I’d like to explore and pursue; like rock climbing, or creative writing, or creating art. things that I tell myself to make time for, over and over again, but that never seem just important enough. except for climbing. I’ve been climbing a lot. therapeutic, in its own sense.
as soon as i try to write, i’m lost for words. it’s been like this for four months now. writing, deleting, writing, deleting. as if nothing is good enough. as if the words aren’t finding their way to my fingertips, somehow, typing away at the keyboard in front of me.
writing has never been an act of thinking for me. it’s been a free-flowing serenade; a mindless symphony; a careless act, almost. one of caressing consolation rather than careful consideration. four years ago i discussed the exact same thing with leo, but in relation to the visual arts. “i wish the visual arts came to me the way writing does”, i told him, “being an act not from the mind but from the heart, rather. not over-thinking, maybe not even thinking, just doing. doing, and letting it be.” lately, i haven’t been able to do that, at all.
i’m not sure what happened or what got sucked out of me, especially since i wrote so much this summer – almost every day by my desk as sunlight hit my wooden floor, dust becoming apparent in the strips of sun shining across my room. i tapped away, eagerly, on my keyboard. i wrote letters, i wrote prose, i wrote poetry. on bus rides i’d ponder my emotions, thoughts, aspirations, and i’d diligently write them down in my phone notes. and then? i don’t know.
writing became something to be shoved away; something that was “i’ll do that later”. it became something i told myself i could do at night, right before going to bed, “because it doesn’t require that much effort”. my other work i ideally worked on during the mornings; psets for example, and long sociology readings. i’d happily overstay my table in the dining hall with either. but that much time was never carved out for the act of writing, and writing alone. writing without goal or aspiration; writing for writing’s sake. for the consolation it gives me. the comfort. the happiness. almost like essential for my survival. well-being. thinking. breathing.
anneli the breathmaker,
anneli the textmaker turned into anneli the testtaker,
where was anneli the heart acher?
i miss the act of writing.
i miss the act of creating.
lately i’ve been thinking a lot about getting a little wind-up bird tattooed on my chest. that, or a little sputnik. to remind myself that i need to wind myself up. that i can’t be dictated by others. in the wind-up bird there is a saying that goes: “Did the wind-up bird forget to wind your spring?”. i can only wind my own spring, be my own inspiration, follow my own aspirations. i need to keep writing, but to keep writing i need to start writing. i need to wind myself up. and who else has inspired and motivated me to write other than murakami? my hero.
i often re-read work that i’ve written before. some of it i really like. some of it i hate. most of it is so incoherent that i can’t judge it objectively at all. i really wish i could write something longer; somehow really have the urge to. i just don’t know what i would write about, what i could write about. what would be capturing enough. maybe if i start writing it’ll just come to me: but what do i start writing about, then? i don’t know.
everything i write seems pointless and without meaning. too unstructured, too little guidance. but isn’t that what i love about writing? isn’t that what i cherish so much? the act of letting it be free-flowing, of letting it come out of my fingertips before hitting my mind, like the art of writing seeps through my blood and hits my muscle memory before i have time to even process the words that i’m writing. like doing before thinking; for once in my life. maybe that’s why i enjoy it so much. it’s literally typing whatever comes into my mind, without restriction, without limitation, just doing, just letting it be.
right now it’s 23:04 and i’ve been listening to james blake’s ‘vincent’ over and over again. james blake and his soft piano and wailing voice. bearded man, portrait drawn two years ago. i’m in my bed, second-hand bed, 120 x 200. on the day we bought it august and I slept in it together, non-crammed in my room for the first time in a long time.
we had dinner at calle’s the other day. not only me and august, of course, it was a whole gang from katte: allan, ran, hedvig, pontus, andrás, lander, johan, calle, louise, and us. before allan drove us there, hedvig and i met outside of katte. she asked me “so how are things between you and august now?”. it caught me completely off-guard. “uhm… they’re… fine! i hope?” i reply, smiling. august breaking up with me was probably the hardest break-up i’ve experienced. i remember it so clearly. i didn’t want to get out of bed for weeks afterwards. such mixed emotions. come to think of it now though, i hold no hard feelings for him. it’s weird to think that we were even together at one point. to think that three years ago, he was my entire world. to think that i know the exact number of birthmarks he has – 116 – and the frequency of which my fingers have ruffled his gel-put blonde hair and traced his jawline. how wrinkles form around his eyes when he smiles, and how much i hate-loved that goofy smile he used to make; boyish but cute (but in a childish way). how he would bury his head where my shoulder turns to neck and how i would curl up in his pale birthmarked-stained arms. it’s weird to think of august in that way. to think of him as an old lover. it feels so far away. yet, talking to him brings back part of that. i miss him, in a way. i really do. i am grateful for what we had; in many ways a very healthy relationship, and i’m sorry things ended the way they did. at the same time, that was the only way things could end at the time. if they wouldn’t have ended in that way, so many things would have been different. i wouldn’t be as strong as i am today. i feel pretty confident saying that.
in other news i just finished murakami's “novelist as a profession” / “författare till yrket”. decently inspiring read, but not so much a how-to guide but more an itching to get back to writing again. i think i also just have a really hard time with the swedish translations of his work – makes me want to get into translating because they’re so unenigmatic in comparison to the works translated by rubin and birnbaum. translating is hard, though – something i’ve come to realize shifiting in and out of english and swedish: both of which i've come to struggle with; both of which feel out of my full control. it’s something i sense especially when i’m home and get thrown back into speaking swedish again, trying to simultaneously write in english. much of both languages become lost within me. i direct translate, my vocabulary is increasingly limiting, i take on things other people say too easily. and at this moment in time i’m thinking in swedish, which is just making this entry really awkwardly written and very confusing. sigh.
man, i really can’t seem to focus on anything right now. i think it’s because i don’t know what to focus on. i have no idea what to write about so i’m just jotting down everything that comes to mind. i feel restless. like i’m headed somewhere with no end goal in mind. no sense of direction.
it's 1:41am right now and this blog post is so incoherent and rambly but I'll publish it anyway. kudos if you read this far. I guess it turned out pretty long. I'll write a proper blog post soon. lots of thoughts bubbling within me, just waiting to get expressed. in that way, writing is a lot like thinking.
what else is new?
i'm reading happy city by charles montgomery right now. good read. i'm applying to writing workshops yet still can't find inspiration to write. my ankle still isn't healed. been solely listening to jazz for the past four days. mostly thelonius monk. also bill evans trio. monica zetterlund. still can't really distinguish between different jazz artists. downfall of technology. jazz just reminds me of dominic anyway. will be back in BOS 27th. not sure if excited or not. just skyped simen and miss montezuma alot. got an email from andrew this morning after having scheduled "email andrew" for today in my google cal like two weeks ago. weird how things like that work out sometimes.
i think that's it.
i'll write soon. promise.
if this blog post touched you in any way, if you like what i do, or if you simply want to support my being alive, you can buy me a coffee here: https://ko-fi.com/annelixie. it would make my day.