On Basil

Basil on my windowsill. I finally got some. I love how the light hits and plays with the leaves, makes them more green in places and bright. They make me feel how rainbows make me feel. I have been following up on jobs and I am unfortunately underprepared for a job audition to be the pianist in a church tomorrow. I have been practicing hymn sightreading but I have been so frantic, spread thin, that I haven’t practiced my prepared piece as much as I should have, and now it is insecure and anemic.

I just lit my candles.

What I am right now:
1) teacher – I come alive when I’m with a student
2) seeker – applying for a searching for jobs, looking for houses with Chris
3) poet – collecting words and maybe stories in my brain, incubating them (I hope)
4) I absorb & smile when the sun is out
5) I say no to most offers or requests

$9.25 per half hour. That’s how much I would get paid to teach at That Music School Director’s school. She just sent me the position offer today. As opposed to $30 per half hour with private students. But it gives me a place to come to, it gives me a community, somewhere to learn from. My students will be able to prepare and perform in a recital.

My room is lived-in and dusty and there are rings on the windowsill, from mugs or the basil jar or the tiny flower pot. I’m glad I’m not moving away from Rochester. I can stay in familiarity, even when my classes are over and I’m not having stimulating intellectual discussions every day.

I think it might be time to move my bed off the floor, so I can practice sitting down at my keyboard.

Tomorrow I can respond to Aria, with questions and attempting to negotiate higher pay. I have an interview next week with Untitled Charter School, a new middle school opening up in Rochester. And the church interview tomorrow.

My phone tempts me sitting on the counter. Messages from Chris and, randomly an ex boyfriend, just this evening.

I am a woman but my gender doesn’t define me. We are all people and gender is fluid. I can ignore the position women are in in society, the positions I put myself in during my teen and early college years. But she is me – my past is my own past, not a disconnected chunk of something. I can forgive. I can – can I? Can I notice my reactions before they happen? So I don’t “yell” (or as I think of it, snap) at Chris?

Have I ever been able to do that? Notice my reactions? I think when I was young. Maybe before Untitled but I’m not sure. I may have not snapped, but instead felt sad or defeated before. Not made my needs known. I had no idea that you could tell people what you needed and then they might consider giving that to you. Now, I just feel this hot pressure and I feel it immediately lash out at whatever external causes the pressure. It’s like they’re not human anymore (the person who triggered me), but a threat, a force, a cold hard shoe pressing on my body. My empathy flees and my body says “ALERT. FIGHT. BAD.”

I think empathy is the biggest thing I wish I had more of right now.
Mom’s hurt makes me feel uncomfortable
Chris’ hurt makes me feel guilty
My friends’ hurt makes me feel angry

Empathy exists for my students, though, and somethings (often?) others.

I am getting tired and tired and this didn’t help much. So scattered. I should start practicing, so I can get this piece learned well & be musical.

April 4, 2019

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