I have never been big believer in double-sessions. I have never had one with Igor, even though there have been times that I was sure I couldn’t get out everything I needed to in an hour—I have never asked for more. As soon as the plane landed I emailed him and told him I needed a double on Thursday. I hadn’t written the entire time I was in Chicago, not even in my journal. But as soon as I got on the plane I started wrting and I didn’t stop until the flight attendent told me to put my chair and tray table in an upright position. I had, by the end of the flight, written 42 pages. And, I’ll have you know they were not the kind of ramblings one keeps in one’s hidden journal. All 42 pages were intended for you. That said, I realizes 42 pages of long hand prose might be a bit much for the blog.
But as I have much more in my to say about Chicago, at least 82 more pages, I knew that a 50-minute session would be completely inadequate for all I have to say. I need to tell him how good it was to be home and what a good time I had. I also need to tell him how much it hurt to be back home and how it felt like I had just walked back into my life and my impulse to go to my house and take out my keys and open the door and crawl into bed and go to sleep and wake up from the bad dream I have been living. I want to take him the bottle of Lake BLuff sand that I took from Sunset Beach and let him smell the soil that stirs my soul. I want to tell him about passing the first house we lived in Lake Bluff and how we went by so fast I wasn’t able to see if anyone was living there. And then I need to tell him how I couldn’t go past our house, I couldn’t even look in its general direction.
And then there is all I need to say about yesterday and how very different it felt when I was alone in Chicago and not with my lovely host. When I was alone it was really like I was back in my life and not just on vacation. When I took the train to Lake Forest all the feelings I had anticipated I would met as soon as I arrived in Chicago greeted me. He needs to hear that even as much as it hurt to be back *home* that he was wrong and I was wrong and that I can go home again and that all the baby shit didn’t hurt like I thought it would. The babies and kids don’t get to me the way they used to, at least most of the time.
Perhaps most importantly I want to tell him that I want to move back. No, really, I mean it. No more of this trying to make L.A. work, I want to go home. I want out of L.A. and I want out now. I was wrong, you can go home again and I am going to go. All of that came to me when I went to Walgreen’s in Lake Forest, not a place that one would imagine would create such strong feelings. I went there because my stomach hadn’t been quite right for days and being back in LF was doing nothing to settle my stomach. And so I went to Walgreen’s. I have actually been to the LF Walgreen’s many times in the last couple of years. I am sure I have told you already, sometimes when I am really homesick I walk the streets of Forest and Bluff in my mind. I walk down Scranton Avenue and try and remember all of the houses in the right order. I walk around the shops of Market Square and I try and remember the windows of the stores and the brick under my feet and the sounds of the fountain. And sometimes I walk the aisles of Walgreen’s. When one has undergone IVF for two years and has had a cat with cardiomyopathy and another with diabetes one spends a lot of time in Walgreen’s.
Yesterday when I went to Lake Forest I had planned on stopping at Talbots and Jcrew and Helanders, but I didn’t imagine I would go into Walgreens. However as soon as I was in the store I knew I had to go back to the pharmacy to see if my cats’ photo was hanging on the pharmacy wall. It was. Then the tears began. Then the feelings, that I am still not far enough away from to put into words, overtook me.
You may be asking yourself, “Self, why are there pictures of Belette’s cats hanging in the Walgreen’s pharmacy?” You see the pharmacist was a big animal lover and because of this she had done many special orders and special favors for my feline friends. One day after a particular act of kindness I decided to print a photo and have the cats *write* a thank you to the pharmacist. As soon as I gave the photo to the pharmacist she hung it on the wall. That photo has been there for almost four years. As soon as I saw the photo I lost it. I was flooded with feeling. This photo on the wall that has been there the whole time I have been in L.A. said to me louder than any person could say, “THIS IS YOUR HOME.” When I heard that message I began to decompensate. I wanted to call someone and tell them what had happened so they could come and pick me up and I could fall apart. Only there was no one to call. I called He-weasel and told him what had happened. I told him I needed his help. I needed him to help me stop crying. I couldn’t be crying on the streets of Lake Forest. I had to stop. He-weasel was confused. For the last 19 years we have been together, every time he has told me not to cry I would get angry with him and so when I called him and asked him to help me stop crying he said, “Go on and cry. It’s okay to cry.” “No”, I explained, “I have to stop. I can’t cry here, not on the street.”
Right as I quit crying I asked him to do something I haven’t asked in almost three years, I asked him to promise me something. I asked him to swear to me that we would get back here. “We’ll work something out.” His admirable statement was not what I was looking for. I was looking for a promise. I needed swearing. But the truth is that even if he did swear that I wouldn’t believe him. Years ago I had asked him to swear we would NEVER come back to L.A. and he, despite his best efforts, wasn’t able to make that happen.
So I want to go to Igor’s tomorrow for two hours and I want to tell him that I am done with L.A. I want to give him my metaphorical two-week notice on this place and tell him that this time I am really serious. I have had it with L.A. I want to go home and I want to go NOW. And then, in the safety of his office, I want to do all the crying that I couldn’t do on the streets of Lake Forest and I want to make him understand that he was wrong and that I was wrong and that I can and that I will go home again.