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Natalie

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All the leaves must fall down [Jul. 10th, 2016|03:59 am]
Natalie
My cat got out tonight. I came home from work after a terrible, stressful day and my roommate had a mini breakdown as only a girl can and suddenly I realized Chaplin, my oldest cat hadn't come out to greet me. He always comes says hello when I come home. This time only the younger cat had come forward. We searched the house- all his normal hiding spots when I saw a window that was open too much. Of course I knew.
I've spent the last 6 hours walking the neighborhood, sitting on my porch, and perched next to my window just waiting and watching.
I read a whole book. I cried three times. I smoked too many cigarettes. I tried to get high. I tried to watch a movie.
He just came back. I can't stop crying; I was so scared of the thought that he might not come back.

It reminded me of the time we thought Taz had gotten out. Do you remember that? You were so distressed. I was too but I felt like I couldn't show it because you deserved to be more upset. I went to my room and cried. We still lived in the town home.
Eventually we found him, hiding in that cupboard over the refrigerator. Just being there, quiet as a mouse. He didn't respond to any of the times we had called to him. I was so relieved.
That's how I feel now but doubled. Or tripled. That's how you must have felt that night.
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Pump the breaks [Jun. 14th, 2016|12:16 am]
Natalie
Sometimes I forget how potent it all is. The ability to just sink into James-thought.

I got drunk the other night and friend requested you on Facebook. Slow your roll there, Natalie. At the time (roughly 4 am) it felt like "sure friend him! Let's push these boundaries and really make this energy felt". Then I woke up the next morning with no friend request accepted and I had immediate anxiety and nerves. Regret and shame. Which is weird, right? Like all I did was push a little button asking if you'd like to openly view each other's page. Which I can only assume we do secretly anyways. At least I do. But I quickly went back and rescended the request. Like maybe you wouldn't notice it. Maybe I got it before you saw it. And how does that work anyways? Is that request still there and you could try to accept it and it gives you an error? Does it disappear from your notifications? Did I really do that?
It's like a year ago when I went to Abbey's page and realized at some point in the last few years I apparently friend requested her. She never accepted. I don't even remember doing it. It must have been before you were married. I rescended that too when I saw it. It made me feel embarrassed.

I want to be your friend so badly. But all this time has passed and surely we're chasing a dead horse. i am shocked each time I realize how deep that longing goes. And part of me wants to just force it so it doesn't have to be dirty and secret anymore. And part of me wants to cut all ties still and forever.

Do you know what I find to be so telling? The times of our contact to each other. I am still in single person time- I reach out to you in the late hours when the day and thoughts have had their time to catch up to me. When night shrouds everything in a hue that looks important but is really just a costume. And your emails come from the day. Perhaps from Daddy Time- which is maybe when you are at work-- Maybe the only time you get to yourself? It's just an interesting take on two very different lives.

And now when I want to email you, I come here and write you. But do you see it? Will you see it ever? In a couple years from now? In another decade? Should I just email you and tell you to come on here? Take the temptation out of these imaginary conversations? Force myself back the real world where we have no more a connection than two strangers on opposite sides of a world?

I digress.
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Do you ever? [Jun. 10th, 2016|11:24 pm]
Natalie
There you are in my inbox again.
8 years ago today we were playing in the street of the westerland house with Maxx and his toy gun. It was many lifetimes ago for me.
For someone who can't be my friend you sure are friendly. Without actually being friendly. I knew you were going to contact me soon. I've been thinking of you nonstop. Only a matter of time before that energy reached you.
Secret time? I've been thinking about really putting that energy out there. Like concentrating on you and us and our friendship. It's crazy but I want to see if it does anything. I weirdly believe it will.

I've been thinking about you a lot lately because I had a friend move into my house for these last couple months that I'm living here. When I leave Colorado, she'll take over the house. Roommates always make me think of you. Do you ever think of your wife as a roommate?
When I moved in with Sassy in California, everything he did made me think of you. I think unfairly. I had left over resentments and issues, little (and big) triggers when he would remind me of you or something you used to do. I'd get so irritated.
This time is going better so far. I think it helps that we know it's temporary. And she's a girl. That's a first. I've never lived with a girl before.
Her moving in here makes me think of when I moved into your place. Do you ever think of that? It was so hard to feel like I was home. It felt like your home and I was just living in it. I've tried to be very conscious of that with her. It wasn't even that you really did anything to perpetuate that. It was just my story. And it's hard to move into a place that's already been lived in.

Anyways, that's what's been on my mind.

Thinking of You
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Brokeback [May. 23rd, 2016|11:24 pm]
Natalie
I feel like I should take out an ad in the missed connections. Except we didn't connect. We just missed.

And yet, once again, on my way to sleep, the little red notification pops up saying I have an unread email. And as always I do a double take when it says your name. Surely it must be a mistake. A fluke of the phone regurgitating some email of yore.
It seems just as impossible for you to quit me as it is for me to expel you from my subconscious. I feel like you're my Jake Gyllenhaal and I'm Heath Ledger. Or maybe it's the other way around.

I still had the opportunity to go to Austin that day. To see a show with Devrah and her boyfriend. I flaked because it seemed too close for comfort. Like scratching an itch next to a mosquito bite you forgot about. And I just would have floated around the city searching for signs of you.

I wish I could ask you to fight for me. Fight for a friendship that may not even exist anymore. I wish I didn't have to ask.

I think there's a part of me that is really sad that I never had the opportunity to show you this beautiful state I live in. A whole chapter you won't know. Which is silly because you never knew California either. But here, I feel like myself. And I think you would love it.

I don't really have anything else to say to you right now.

do you remember the movie American Tale with little Feifel, the Jewish mouse? There's a scene where he's alone and lonely and singing to his sister. The song goes:
And even though I know how very far apart we are,
It helps to think we might be wishing on the same bright star
And when the night wind starts to sing that lonesome lullaby
It helps to think we're sleeping underneath the same big sky.

I feel that.
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Next week [May. 1st, 2016|06:59 pm]
Natalie
I want to email you this but I know I shouldn't. So this is the most responsibility I can take-

I have the opportunity to come to Austin Saturday the 14th. I want to see you. Bring wife bring child. Let's get coffee. Or water. Or anything that would make it alright for us to be in the same vicinity for ten minutes.

Do you want to see me?
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I am a poster girl with no poster. [May. 1st, 2016|03:36 pm]
Natalie
Dear Blue Eyed Stranger,

This picture is from 2004.  It must have been shortly after we just met because based on LiveJournal entries, we went to the Angelika that first time to see 21 Grams on March 1st.  I didn't realize the midnight driving was so quick in our friendships.

Thank you for knowing which of those three emails was the one to respond to.  I didn't even know.  But you were right.  I hadn't even realized how much it bothered me now knowing why we stopped talking last time.  I'm sorry for any problems or issues I contributed to.   I'm proud of you for chosing the path that protects those you love.  I went back and read those emails from two years ago. Tried to imagine what I would feel if I were in your soon-to-be wife's shoes.  Some things were inappropriate.  But most of it sounded like two kids just trying to impress each other.  I miss being your friend.  I wish we could be friends.  When we stopped talking this last time, we had managed to be friends for over a year.  It's weird to think that something like that has proved to be such a difficult thing for us to accomplish.  Especially since we are both so smart, and selfish, and determined.  Alas.

I dreamt of you last night.  All night long.  Such an odd coincidence.  First you were a dream I had within the dream.  And I woke in the dream to you there for real life  And then I woke to real life to discover an email from you.  I had stopped checking emails from you weeks ago.  Shortly after the last entry here, actually.  Do you think it's possible for two people to actually have a connection that transcends time and space?  And can it really come from the seeds of two depressed teenagers?  It just seems so naive to think what we had was truly so special, but also I can't deny how special it feels.  And is it really never going to go away?

You're not fat.  Just putting that out there.  You've mentioned it quite a couple times and it's always one of the first things that comes up when we reconnect.  I see you there on the book of faces.  And before I could see you, I would still come across random pictures every so often.  You're not fat.  And your face still looks the same.

Anyways.

I promised an update on family.

Last we spoke, I was looking foward to being in my brother's wedding.  That went great.  Until last summer when they split up.  They're getting a divorce.  He left her in search of a positive energy in his life.  He quit his job.  He found a new one.  He moved into the attic of a friend's house while he searches for an apartment.  He refused to accept what wasn't making him happy.  Thank goodness they hadn't had kids.  Although  I think if they had, he would have left anyways.  That's a lie.  There's no telling what would change if they had kids.  But Chelsey didn't want them.  And my brother, despite always wanting them when he was younger, accepted this as the way it would be.  Perhaps that was a blessing.  It seems once kids are in the picture, divorce is a much harder decision.  Maybe it's because the kids are all so young right now.  It'll be interesting to see if the relationships that do eventually end will be the same ones that now seem so unhappy and unstable.  I feel like everyone trades in the right to a loving relationship for the right to parent.  Is it impossible for me to want both?
So all this happened about a month after my sister called off her engagement to her boyfriend of 5 years.  She left him.  Moved out into her own apartment.
Apparently, the Najman's don't like being stuck in relationships they don't like.  Or maybe we are all just a bunch of commitment-phobes.

So my father is living in Austin.  Texas.  That's a lie.  He's actually living in Bastrop, which is right outside of Austin.  Regardless, it's still in your orbit.  My mother and youngest brother, Jonathan, still live in New Mexico.  Which is where I'm moving to in three months.  So don't come ambush (read: surprise) me in Colorado because I won't be here.  I mentioned that I was moving in my last entry.  I'll live with the two of them for the next two years, while I do some of this school thing.  My parents promised Jonathan that he would only go to one high school.  And he's really flourishing in Santa Fe.  So they are letting him finish school there.  Meanwhiles my father got a job he didn't want to refuse so he's already back in Texas.  And when Jonathan graduates, my mom will move back down there to join my father.  And then I will be visiting your home town for holidays and vacations.  And if that doesn't fuck with my head then nothing does.
It definitely fucks with my head.  What if we see each other?  What if I turn the corner in a grocery store and there you are, pushing a cart with your back turned towards me?  What if we both reach for a bundle of asparagus at the same time and my voice drops out of the conversation I'm having on my cell phone as I just hear the echo of "hello?" coming from the other end of the line? What if the orbit is still not close enough to ever cross paths, but now I'll always have a tiny panicked voice deep inside me when I'm in town?

Can't we just get some fucking coffee?  Can't we just take the biggness out of the equation and just be two people again?
I know the answer is no.  I read your email.  I understood the wife's perogative to say, "no you can't see your best friend again because you have a propensity for being inappropriate."  I just wish there was some other way.  I miss your voice in my life.  I still have it all the time in my head and I just wish it could be real instead of a figment of the past.
This reminds me of you:

perhaps one day
we will meet again
as characters in a different story,
maybe we'll share a lifetime then.
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Title Goes Here [Apr. 14th, 2016|10:57 am]
Natalie
Dear Stranger,

An intro: Since emailing last week, I have the following conversation in my head at least once a day-
Head: "Do you think he wrote back?"
Me: "No."
Head: "Maybe you should check."
Me: "I know he didn't. If he was going to, he would have done it already."
Head: "What about now? Do you think he wrote back?"
Me: "No."
Head: "Maybe you should check."

You told me that you happened to be on here, reading this last week. I haven't even thought about livejournal in years. (You would think LiveJournal, the website, would have added livejournal, the word, into their dictionary. But, no.) Since last time you mentioned it. Which was June 20, 2013 when you told me you found an app that lets you download all your entries. So, I can assume it will be a long time since you find yourself on here again, I figured it would a safe place to scratch the itch talking to you always awakens. I just want to tell you everything. I want to tell you all about my life. I think it's so weird that urge still exists after so many, many years.

I broke up with my boyfriend a couple weeks ago. We hadn't been dating very long. We hadn't slept together. When I broke up with him, he told me I gave out very mixed messages because I seemed to like him, I was excited to date, I was encouraging to make plans but when it came to physical intimacies I was closed off and slow acting. It was a little rude and off-putting. We hadn't been going out very long at all. And I was very clear that I wasn't going to sleep with anyone until I was in a committed relationship with someone I loved and loved me. When I told him it had been something like 6 or 7 years since I had slept with someone he took it really well. But I think he thought I was dating so that I could put an end to that. Which is not the case. If I just wanted to screw, I could make that happen. I could go to the bar, I could make some calls, I could create a one-night stand. I committed to myself, though.
I remember the exact moment too. I was in Michael's car. It was probably my mom's birthday because I'm pretty sure we were at that restaurant where we threw her a party for her big 4-0. I knew Michael had some tendencies towards men, but it seemed like he was so interested in me. We hadn't had sex since that first time, but we were inseparable. So I put myself out there. I was tired of second guessing. He admitted that he only felt romantic interest for men. And I probably teared up a little, and told him how tired I was of sleeping with the wrong people. It felt like years since I had fucked someone who actually wanted to be with me. Even Adrian had loved me, but didn't want to be with me when we were sleeping together. I think I have to go back all the way to Jason as the last person who fucked me, loved me, and dated me all at the same time. It didn't feel good. So I decided I needed a cleansing. (Who knew it would last so long?) I promised myself I was going to wait for a real connection before doing that again.
And for the most part, I have. There was once or twice with you when we still lived in the same city and were trying to remember how our friendship works. There was the married man in New York. There was the drunken giant when I moved to Colorado. And that's it. I can count the times on one hand. And this silly man who's known me for all of a month thinks I'm just going to jump into bed with him? Hardly.

So I started thinking what did I really want from this man anyways? From dating? From love? If on my checklist of life, I could put a check mark next to FALL IN LOVE, what would be next? It was interesting because I hadn't asked myself- maybe ever. It felt like for all my life the truest goal of living was to fall in love. Find the mate. Grow the relationship. Never leave and never be left. But in the best case scenarios, that's really only the first step. What would be next?
If I found someone who loved me and wanted to spend the rest of their life with me, I would want someone to support me while I went back to school or someone to support me while I have a baby. Those are my real dreams in life. And I don't need a man to either one, really.

So I'm starting school in September. I'm moving in with my mom and my brother in New Mexico. I'm going to community college for my associate's in psychology. In two years I'll go to university for my bachelor's. After that I'll get my master's. In six years I'll be establishing a career in something I truly want to do. Three to four years after that, I'm going to have a baby. In whatever way I need to. If I need to adopt, or get a donor, or maybe along the ride I will find someone who likes my plan and wants to come along. But by the time I'm 40, I want to be done with school and having a child. It's the first time I've felt like I have a life plan. A real step by step, end-in-mind, light at the end of the tunnel, PLAN.
It makes me think of that scene in Friends where the girls are laying around the living room drinking margaritas (or something like that). Rachel is lamenting the fact that she doesn't have a plan for life. Do the others? And Phoebe, with her ponytail flipped over her head and a straw bringing the liquor straight to her mouth without having to move says, "I don't even have a PLA-"

I fucking love it. In Devrah's words, "I'm changing my life."
That's all for today.

Love you,
Natalie.

Tune in next time as we delve into the family life!
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College Draft Day and Dumb Bets [May. 11th, 2011|07:33 pm]
Natalie
We're going to try something new here.  I would like to share some of my thoughts recently...about sports.  And if this goes well, I may continue to share them here.  Feel free to unfriend me if that's not something you want popping up on your friends page.  I don't read any of your posts either. 

So.

First off, I had some ideas about the recent nfl draft.  I love how die-hard teamsters follow the draft like it's their own child deciding which college they are going to go to.  It honestly shocks me when someone can tell me that the Redskins took Leonard Hankerson (who?) in the fourth round, but when that same person can continue with their fifth and sixth round pick, I start looking for signs of mental weakness.  Because, I find college draft day a silly excuse to talk about NFL in the middle of basketball season.  No one really cares which team scoops up the newest of sure to be professional busts.
I word it this way for a reason.  For a few reasons, actually. 
Firstly, college drafts are considered now by the average viewer as a pre-season who's who.  Which it's not supposed to be. In my opinion, the most successful draft picks are the ones that don't come into fruition for years after the draft.  A college ball player should be selected for play years after his exit from college.  We expect children graduating from college to start at the low rungs of law offices and internships.  Yet, our college players are expected to go straight from coddled coaches' pets to pro form.  They are exploited by local news shows and ESPN at an almost laughable level of worship. Constantly we are looking for the new edition who is going to "turn this team around" and take us to the promised land.  But these poor kids are not ready for NFL play.  They are ready to be shaped and molded and taught the next level of their trade.  They are ready to sit on a bench and learn from the professionals who should have learned on the bench years before that from their senior staff.  But in this world of nothing is worth it unless there is immediate reward, where team support doesn't exist unless your team is providing you a run at the championship, draft picks are booed unless they come out of the gate running.  And then we wonder why Vince Young cries when the crowd boos him.  And we wonder why these under developed, poor lost children aren't the role models we expect our professional athletes to be.  Give a man time to cultivate his gift, like Aaron Rodgers was given, sitting for years watching Brett Farve, learning from him, waiting for his turn, and you will find that when that time finally comes, the young man is now the leader of a quarterback you want him to be.
College drafts are a bust because we are too impatient to appreciate that true drafts shouldn't be felt for years after the actual draft.  Of course, by that time, our ADD minds have forgotten completely that the player had been drafted in the first place.

Secondly, I made a ridiculous bet the other day.  I don't know what got into me, except that I think I was deprived for intelligent sport conversation and I jumped into it too quickly, desperate to see if I still knew how to do it.  So, I get wrapped up in this drunken debate about who will take the Eastern conference.  My friend logically has taken the Heat and I am desperately trying to fight for the Bulls.  He is obviously in a stronger position and sober the next morning, I find myself hard pressed to disagree with him.  But I placed money on this wager and now I am left trying to find a way to convince myself that Chicago will find a way to go further in the playoffs than the magical masters of Miami.  Anyone watching the games can see that Miami has achieved the special team play that was speculated and expected last year when the Fabulous Three Trade was executed.  But I will say this.  I don't think Miami is truly coalesced as a team.  I think that individually it's players are hungry for a ring.  I think that individually its stars are tired of the constant scrutiny.  But the Bulls, in it's youth and desperation, will slide over for any player to make any play.  Boozer's having a good night?  Suddenly Derrik Rose is the assist king and proves he is worthy of being the MVP.  His point guard tranining kicks in and suddenly we hear not just his name, not just boozer's, but noah, deng, and gibson's as well.  
Say what you will, but the more names you hear about from the bench, the stronger that team is, in my opinion. 
I can't convince myself fully, of course, that our little bull engine that could can take down the Miami Heat, but I do believe in my heart of hearts that they are the better team and as an NBA lover I have to cultivate the naivity that the better team wins.  
Plus, I hate losing bets. 
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Come on, skinny love, what happened here? [Apr. 24th, 2011|01:46 am]
Natalie
[melodies flooding my head: |Skinny Love-Birdy]

You asked me to unblock you from facebook.  But this is why I can't.  Don't add me back to you lj friends because then I see it.  And it's like a fucking siren calling out to me.  You can connect with him....I know the way....

I don't know how to tell you this, and  I think we're past the part where it'll ever get said but it sits so heavy on me.

I am so hung up on all this.  I am so stuck.  I can't move on.  It's been years.  

Ok, I'm going to organize my thoughts and put them down.  Then I am going to spend every ounce of energy during every second of the rest of my life not thinking about this or you again.  Because the suitcase is heavy and bulky and I am tired already of carrying it around with me.



Once upon a time there was a little lost girl who found a little lost boy and she fell pretty quickly in love.  Because he was smart and funny and pretty and lost just like her.  And he got her and more importantly, she got him too, which she thought was pretty big.  And they wandered around this giant stupid mean ugly forest.  And they got more lost together.  And she never told him she was in love with him.  And she never told herself either.  And in this way, they were both able to think it was just...unimportant that they were both so lost together.  But actually, it was very important, because it may have been an unconscious but very intentional decision on her part.  Which meant she probably could have gotten out of the woods if she tried, alone.  Which meant the little boy never truly got why she cared so much.  And sometimes, he was mean.  And then more often he was mean.  And he started feeling like it was better to be lost and alone then to have to spend one more minute with the little girl. 

Fuck the metaphor.  I haven't been able to move on because I think for the last near decade I've loved you.  And I made so many stupid moves with you.  So many wrong turns.  
Bluntly,
I think I made a mistake back there.

And you know, the third time, when that happened I thought I was an old pro.  And I shrugged it off like it was a nothing.  But it's not a nothing and I think about it all the time.  The third time and the second time and the first time.  And every time it makes me cry like a fucking baby.  Insensitive simile.  It's a giant suitcase I carry with me now too.  All this damn baggage that doesn't fit in the carry on bin. 

And a little while ago?  In Austin, and the frequent phone calls.  The updates with life and the bored texts.  It was literally like walking back in the forest and having you take my hand and ask me which way we should go.  And so hesitantly at first, and then so wonderfully, I was ready to start walking again.  Fuck yes let's get lost.   We can be older, and have better boundaries, and I'll make sure I remember which way home is.  And I promise never to spend the night in the forest and please, can I just play a little bit longer?

And now, somehow we're somewhere else.  We're somewhere different.  Individually.  Because I still think about...you.  Too fucking often.  And I still feel like there's something missing now.  This fucking piece that used to be there, this part of me, this person. 

And it's lame.  And I'm tired of it.  And I'm sorry to the little girl for getting so lost.  And I'm sorry to you little boy too. 



I don't know how to let go of all this stuff.  
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Wedding [Apr. 23rd, 2011|09:07 pm]
Natalie
Today was beautiful.

I'm glad you weren't there.  I would have loved you.  
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