My roomie has a date tonight, and I’m sitting here watching Rocky movies, eating Thai food, doing line edits and arguing with myself again about what a lame person I must be to be sitting here finding some kind of happiness in line edits and Rocky movies. Aren’t I incomplete? Isn’t there something wrong with me? All the magazines say so. The TV says so. They say how I’m supposed to be, and how I’m supposed to feel, and I’m supposed to feel lame, sitting here at home by myself, doing line edits and watching movies.
I should go out tonight. Go to Second City. Go around the corner to the Green Mill. Really should go out tonight. Should do something.
I should be dating.
Scratch that. Go back. Rewind.
Me: We’ve discussed this.
Evil Kameron: You’re a freak.
Me: Whoa. Hold on. First: you’re channeling all the bullshit pressure again. You were totally fine until your roomie started dating. You’re internalizing social expectations for the way women are supposed to live. Step back, deep breath. Are you wholly comfortable yet with the idea of being in a relationship? Are you secure enough in your sense of self that you know you wouldn’t let it be subsumed by the desires of someone else? We’ve been down this road before, honey – if you want to be strong, if you want this life, if you want to be happy right now, this is how you have to play it. Once you’ve got your stuff together, once you’re more comfortable in your skin, with who you are, we’ll have this conversation again. That’s what the journey’s about, honey. That’s what the traveling is about, the writing is about. That’s everything. And until you have a handle on yourself, you can’t go dragging anybody into your life.
Evil Kameron: But isn’t that really cynical? Why the hell are you sitting around here on a Friday night eating Thai food and doing line edits on some fantasy book nobody’s ever expressed any interest in and watching lame Rocky movies?
Me: Cause it’s the one day a week I get Thai food, I’d rather write fantasy books than do anything else, and I’ve got boxing class tomorrow.
Evil Kameron: So this is the life you chose for yourself?
Me: Yea. For now. This is a journey, like all the rest of them. And when you’re traveling, you’ll have some lonely Friday nights. That’s what makes you love the crazy, people-filled nights all the more.
Evil Kameron: Dammit, you’re getting all philosophical and Old Woman Wise again.
Me: It’s called perspective. I know what it is to be in the corner, in the shitter, in poverty, without anything or any hope for anything else. This world, this night, these things I’ve chosen – I’m so fucking lucky to be here. I’m so happy to be here.
Evil Kameron: Get yourself a drink. You have another 680 pages to work on.
Me: Damn straight.
Evil Kameron: Bungee jumping in New Zealand next year?
Me: Count on it.
Evil Kameron: Dorky guy in tow?
Me: Don’t push it.
Have a great weekend, all.