Saturday 25th of November
Good morning, bad day, good evening.
I got to help out with a homeless ministry. It was nice. The sun rose while we rode the trains and we gave out hot chocolate and coffee to the people being cold (so to ourselves as well).
I came home and realised I can fill my schedule completely with things that make me feel like I’m a good person, but still be dissatisfied under the overwhelming pressure to perform and be good and be good and be good. My friend told me to take the rest of the day off.
The sun set and I needed to get out of the house a bit, so I was going to a café at the station.
Then I realised I could go anywhere.
And my heart started shaking with excitement, I could go anywhere. Like really, any place in Tokyo. And so I jumped on the train to Ikebukuro, and then went to Harajuku. Walked along the crowded streets and then past lit up blue trees towards Shibuya (which is my favourite place in the world). I was considering whether I should talk to anyone, but I was so intenesly aware, so outside of my body yet so in it, soul expanding but walls up even though they were windows and that’s okay, that was okay for that time.
⬑Harajuku, blue trees and tiny streets.
(Also, soundtrack for the night: Warriors by M.I.A. For some reason middle eastern hip hop was just right.)
The difference between feeling like
there’s no way out and talking about
that there’s no way out
is the way out.
God has brought me to places I’ve wanted to write about. Usually before I’ve known that they are the places I want to write about. There’s a story in my head, about a city surrounded by desert, and last year I found that desert. On outreach in Kenya our bus broke down in the middle of nowhere. We had to wait there, on dusty ground, in warm wind, as the sun set and the full moon rose. I had the realisation that it was the very desert I wanted to write about, and sat quietly with eyes wide open and mind spinning in the jeep that drove us back. And now Tokyo feels like the city I want to write. Or rather, I feel in it the way I want my characters to feel.
Insert sentences about how God is more comitted to your dreams than you are. And to, well, you.
I’m in Tokyo for three weeks, on outreach with YWAM(!!!!!) It’s insane and crazy and surreal, and so very Japan.
Japan is so Japan. Which sounds stupid, like the way I couldn’t stop talking about how American everything in America was when I first came there. But it’s like my favourite thing in the world. That regardless of globalization and urbanization and communication the houses are different and the sound of the river is different and the wind is different.
(That’s about all I have to say because I haven’t realised I’m actually here yet, but here are some city gifs)
Life is so interesting.
I’ve broken down many times, in many ways.
The autumn of my last year in school, I reached a point – several times – where I physically couldn’t do anything but sit in bed and finally ask for help.
On outreach to Kenya I broke down and then did things anyway.
And while working as a teacher I had to, well, quit working as a teacher because of where it brought me.
I keep walking into walls. Running into them in fact, heart first. I think I should learn to hit them with my shoulders instead, so that I don’t break into a million pieces. But I do also think I’ll be the one to tear them down.
From the times I couldn’t undo
couldn’t stand up again.
From the times I couldn’t win
but only say
one of us will grow tired
and it won’t be me.
From endless days
of searching back:
I love you,
said as easy as breathing.
(is how they’ve learned not to give up)
(Yesterday, borrowing my roommates car.)
I’ve had too many days
In these last few days
To write about all of them.
I was thinking about it a few weeks ago, when we went to Walmart in the middle of the night to buy things for a friend’s birthday. That’s crazy! It was an adventure, such a day, such a whole day and night to write about. Maybe I’m too excited, or actually I don’t care if I’m too excited, joy belongs to the people too excited. But then the next day something new happened, and I never did write.
My life feels full of those days lately.
(And that’s good. I document things that are rare.)
Pride is a river
Eat it for breakfast
of ice cold water
to see clearly
your bones are shaking
(I throw it right back up again)
_________ your pride
have it for lunch
WILL QUENCH THE FIRE!
(welcome to your body)
The bulimia of pride
I throw it right back up again
Pride is a river
(but) In the evening
I have remembered the alcohol in my veins and I set a match to it.
Eat The last supper
Swallow your wine
if you lean your back against me.
Or: The inevitability of time
Wow, deep right?
See, we didn’t quite have time to finish our ice cream. I was eating my cookie dough extra chocolate chip caramel chocolate sauce deliciousness while stressing out about not stressing, and then suddenly the sky was dark and we were biking along the road as rain started to fall, fireworks going off in the distance. Violent in comparison to soft lights from the restaurants we passed. It was not bad. It was one of my favourite moments of the whole evening. But as we hopped off and stood next to our bikes the sentence ‘The inevitability of time‘ popped into my head.
We just bike alongside that time. Sing with it. Get rained on, messed up, as it flows by like the wind and grabs our hair and hands with the unforgiveness of a ringing bell. The sound of it is breaking my bones from the inside out. I was just supposed to be here for a short time. Last year was the fourth of july I was supposed to experience. Now it’s no longer just a small window or good perspective into a culture that is not mine, but it’s tradition for me too. There will be another fourth of July, and the sun will sink as a countdown until the fireworks start again, if I die, if I live, if I stop caring. It continually exists. Apart from me. Maybe that’s what I’m saying.
Anyway. It was one of those moments when finding a specific set of words and using them to define the moment, the experience, the lesson, made me feel better, calmer, satisfied with existence because it means I am here, I am growing, I am seeing this moment as being something.
(And is it ever something. My heart sings with it, beats with it, and I am just lost enough)