Thursday, October 29, 2009
Pick Up Stix
I am not a huge game player, I have always been way too competitive. I am one of those known to display behavior that ranges from flipping the board and pouting off to straight up cursing and accusations towards those I am playing with of ganging up on me. Charming, I know.
BUT, pick-up stix has always been a favorite, as it is a game of sheer skill and cunning fine motor skills. From a very young age I have enjoyed the thrill of being good at extracting the next stick without the entire pile tumbling. (I was good at operation also)
On this sunny fall morning, from my first floor view (it's actually the third story) of the park across the street and after seeing Youssef off to work, with the babies asleep, another spotted night of sleep and feeding behind us, I must say that I have the same satisfied feeling with my life as I get when I am successful at a game of pick-up sticks.
Some days, it all feels like luck and destiny and the way the world wanted things to be for me, but this morning, it feels like a choice. It feels like I was living a different life, I was a different girl that had a different job and a different address and thought different things about...now here it would be easy to say I thought differently about love and family and marriage, but that is not true. I thought differently about two things: Youssef and myself. Separately and Together.
He was always kinda there, as a concept, a memory, my first love, the guy that I resented, but wasn't mad at. The story I loved to tell, the reason my heart got broken so bad in the first place. Youssef, the crazy, the philosopher, the muslim, the cook, the accident prone, the self absorbed, the sensitive. I never once thought, that I would be reunited with him. I did not know that I could make a choice and give him another chance and that we could love again, so profoundly. I did not expect that we would make a family and that it would be the most important thing in my life.
Now this is where the second thing that I thought differently about comes in. I did not expect any of that because I thought differently about myself also. I thought I had 'been there-done that' and evolved way past it. And it's true that I had evolved past the girl (teenager) I was then and the young 20 something he was then as well. But I hadn't evolved past Morocco. I hadn't evolved past this strong tie to family and cozy palots on the floor and not drinking alcohol for weeks and not even noticing.
The woman I had turned into before I came here, was brilliant, but maybe a bit more flashy (well she definitely wasn't wearing a leaky breast milk stained tank top).
She thought she so had her shit together and that she knew exactly what she was doing and who she was and that she was not someone that anything that she wasn't already could penetrate.
8 months later, to the day, that woman is gone, I picked her up with two sticks and laid her to the side. In her place is an even more complicatedly positioned stick. But I am not afraid of trying to get at that one because I am learning to trust myself and rely on the dumb luck of physics, the way the sticks all fall to the ground and my fierce motor skills.