Sleep(ing)

(Okay, so I was playing around with voice. No idea if any of these work. This is really truly just a practice run free write)

My boyfriend used to cut me. Not all the time and only when I was sleeping. Shallow cuts like scratches and I would wake up with lines of blood inked into my sheets. I used to imagine that there were patterns, codes, and that if I could just figure them out then he would stop. But I never did and he never did. Only years later, when I noticed my body in a mirror, did I understand the shape of the scars and that the pattern hadn’t been in the blood. I was the code that I couldn’t break.

I was in love with this girl for awhile. She was a kick boxer and the muscles in her legs were so fucking incredible. A friend of mine tells me that I only liked her because she could have broken me. And she could have, but that wasn’t the reason. I liked waking up next to her in the mornings as she stretched her legs out. She would lift one straight up into the air above her and slowly bend and un-bend her knee. The she would do the other leg. It was the most beautiful thing that I had ever seen.

He sometimes woke up screaming. The first time that it happened I remember thinking that the world had ended. Guys don’t scream, right? So, there must be some serious shit going down. But there was nothing. It was always nothing. It wasn’t every night but it happened enough that I had to break up with him.

Don’t date guys in emo bands. Rule to live by because it is never fucking worth it. Hair product and mascara on your pillows, which is hell to get out by the by. Then there is the whole “Woe is me, I’m cast in shadows and darkness” vibe. I’m not into that Twilight vampire shit. So guys it is just not a turn-on. And mascara over night? Really?! Seriously, you could get an eye infection.

We met over coffee. Both of us were ordering triple shots of espresso, which is what makes it so weird that we both never wanted to get out of bed. I’m not talking sex either, I’m saying like just sleeping together. Our body parts entwined. We would lie in bed for hours, just breathing in and out at the same time, our chests rising and falling to some strange rhythm that only ever existed in those moments when we together. It’s funny; she used a pomegranate shampoo and now whenever I smell pomegranates I get sleepy.

He brought me breakfast in bed and breakfast in bed freaks me out. Food plus bed equals a major no-no. Like bugs and bacteria and ew. Crumbs in your sheets? That’s disgusting and perverse and I really don’t think that anyone should live that way. Like ever.

After she died, I couldn’t sleep. It was if the shape of my body didn’t fit into the bed right if she wasn’t there to complete me. It struck me in a way that was deeper than just missing the tone of her voice or the sound of her feet as she walked across the floor. I told this to someone once and they looked at me as if I were saying something selfish. As if what I meant was that I was inconvenienced by being unable to sleep. But, what I meant, what I missed wasn’t the sleeping, wasn’t just this necessary function to live. What I missed was waking up and turning to look at her as she opened her eyes and I watched her face bloom into the day.

 I think I loved him. I hate saying that. I feel like loving someone should be definite, should be absolute and powerfully concrete. But, that’s all it is: I think I loved him. I remember waking up next to him that first time and imagining the rest of my life as a series of mornings waking up next to him and I was suddenly ridiculously happy. Then one day I stopped noticing waking up and started to notices the ways in which he wasn’t someone else. Then it was over and now I sleep alone.

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