When I'm in the middle of an intense worksprint, I explode all over the kitchen and living room. A just-cooked, half-eaten pot of curry soup is on the stove; the sink is piled with plastic tupperware that used to hold the pre-chopped meat and vegetable ingredients. Grapefruits, a platter that formerly contained cheesecake, and a bowl with traces of curry soup are sprawled across the kitchen table with my phone, two newspapers, my research journal, and a set of coupons for AJ's Burgers & Beef.
I am piled on the couch, a tangle of speaker cables at my feet blaring Ingrid Michaelson and Jason Mraz. The speakers were dragged from my desk earlier in the week when I decided I wanted music and my couch at the same time. A glass of tea is perched beside the couch; a miniature French press brews yet another glass, witnessed by an empty San Pellegrino bottle and a grocery receipt for $117 worth of spinach, eggs, potatoes, chocolate, and all the rest of my calories for the month.
There's something about the sprawl of half-open, half-cooked, half-cleaned, half-eaten things that feels sort of like my brain when I'm letting it wander between a multitude of half-baked, not-quite-formed-into-words ideas, fragments of reading notes, crappy first drafts. I'll get up, dance around the room (quite literally: I've got a lot of choreography to figure out before Monday), refill the tea, and dive onto the couch to type again.
I know that when things start to feel more solid in my writing, I will want to clean the space; as my ideas converge, I'll feel the need to go and wash the bowl and put away the pot and tuck the soup into a clean plastic container in the fridge. I will clear my desk, resettle my speakers by their usual chair, recycle the San Pellegrino bottle. At some point -- probably before I proofread for the last time -- I will want to take a shower, scrub clean both my body and my mind, and then look at the thing I've made before it marches off into the world. And then I'll go and get new groceries (we have run out of both water and salad greens) and sit down with new books to read.
Turns out my physicality and intellect are highly intertwined. Don't even get me started on how spirituality, sexuality, and affective/emotional states blend into that -- I do not understand it in the slightest, but it's awesome to experience and keep discovering. I'm pretty sure my future family is going to think "okay, mom's really weird," but these quirks and cycles I have now will mature and metamorphose into whatever that future looks like, and I'm curious to discover it too as it comes along.
Oh, man -- the possibilities! I like being a person.
And I will end this break and get back into editing now. Hello, Derrida!