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I am up at 1:30 in the morning, not hungry, just restless. My bedsheets were restless too, at the point of strangling me. Where was the plain white flat sheet that usually rested motionlessly on my top skin? Where were my two favorite pillows that propped my head just so?
I surmised at 1:25 a.m. that my not taking a shower for three full days might have contributed to the itchiness of my skin. There was no question that not putting my regular medication into my ears probably led to the cauliflower growing out of them, because my body hates me and always has. If I didn’t keep on constant top of my body’s tricks, I could be Elephant Woman.
Probably already am.
Got up with stupid zit in my lip area today; yup, checking that out in the mirror at 1:27 a.m. Hola, I said to it, though I felt no returned hospitality. My, you are a red one. Are you doing this to me because I shaved this area three nights ago and you just want to pop out like that to tell the world that I’m not in charge of my face either? Is this going to continue for ten more years?
That’s fine, zit. I've seen bigger. If there could be two directions, I request one of two: 1) Please be a little zit that goes away fast, even though I caused you by rubbing my face into my dirty sheets because I was depressed.
2) If you’re destined to be one of those cystic acne ones, the kind that never come to a head so I’m just left with a festering scab for a month, please excuse me from work duties that might involve a superior who might take me aside and ask me, concerned, “What is WRONG with your EYE?”
There has never been anything wrong with my eye.
I have simply and occasionally had to wear gunshot holes in my face. Daintily.
Sometimes it’s hard to get up and face the day no matter if you are married or not, happy or not, beautiful children running around or not. These seem like luxuries to me. So often, I would be happier cleaning up your kitchen and doing your laundry, if just for the fact that I wouldn’t be doing it just for myself. You might love me in the end.
Many years ago, when I was still buck-toothed and thin and awkward like an eleven-year-old can be, my parents took the five of us kids searching for a Christmas tree. I’m sure it was in the woods outside of Bemidji, Minnesota, in the year 1979 because while I concentrated on the task at hand, I had a boy on my brain too. I might as well have been on a space ship.
My mother kept reminding me, as I followed her in the woods, “Watch out for the sticks, Katie! Don’t fall onto the sticks!” Evidently this year’s Christmas tree
outing started out in a clear-cut, with lots of pointy sticks sticking straight up. I do remember hearing my mother call out to me, “Be careful!” many times.
But somehow in my tiredness and trustfulness and concentration on the one boy I loved, I tripped head-first into a stake that missed my eye by inches. My mom took me back to the station wagon, where I sat in the back seat and wondered how this egg on my forehead was going to fit into the Catholic Christmas Pageant at St. Philip’s, where I was scheduled to play the wife…or the queen…or the slave to the boy I’d had a crush on for five years.
It was a big noggin egg, right on my forehead, and I didn’t have bangs at the time. For my costume, I wore my junior bridesmaid’s dress from my sister’s wedding the year before. Outside of the large bruised egg on my forehead, I still felt confident. I knew my lines, and I had loved this boy for so long.
The lights were low, as they should have been.