When I walk I feel the wave of motion.
Literally, I walk like I'm on a boat. I rock. I stumble a bit.
I'm sure my students in all my sections thought I was drunk during every class this week.
It reminded me of my "bad" graduate school days. That was no fun.
I've been thinking about the songs that make up the soundtrack of my life.
There's so many. Too many.
Some I can listen to now after a-many-years break.
Others I still can't stomach. They remind me of so much I'd rather forget.
Still others I listen to religiously. Even if they give away my age. I don't care.
This week I've been plugging along, but with a little less heart than usual.
Because some of my heart I sent to someone else.
Because early this week I found out that one of my former students who I'm still really close to tried to commit suicide.
Every time I think about her there's a lump in my throat. My vision puddles. My mind blanks out, and the only words that come to me are "Hail, Mary, full of grace, the Lord is with thee..."
I literally almost passed out and fell over while walking the aisle in one of my Mac Computer Lab classes. I pressed my palm flat against one of the aisle desks and perched my hip steady against its sturdy weight.
I don't think my students noticed because they're used to me passionately adding my two cents to a discussion then suddenly taking a moment to come up for air while they laugh off my unusual expressions.
But it was the first time this week I felt like this Vertigo that has been plaguing me since last Sunday was really something I should visit the doctor about.
Too bad I think my doctor is a pill pusher and out for the dollar, not her patients.
I need to try something new.
It was Tim Gunn who really made me think about the soundtrack of my life.
Some too-rich-for-having-no-degree life coach on Tim's new show told the helpless, fashion-less victim that she needed to walk with confidence, "And one way to do is to walk like you're listening to the songs that make up your life's soundtrack."
I have a confident walk, but I don't know if I would credit that to my life soundtrack.
Seriously, most of my songs are way too acoustic, cryptic, and emotionally desperate for a confident walk. They remind me of who I used to be when I wanted to be the me I am today. Or they humble and quiet me. They help me process those things I don't really know how to verbalize or write into words. They open me up emotionally and give me an outlet for those emotions.
When I think of confident-walking songs, I think of my man JT and Mariah. Sure, those two have had their important moments in my life, and maybe JT would make the soundtrack, but really neither would represent the Top 10.
I don't know...I guess those complex songs that are in the Top 10 do give me my confident walk, in some way I really don't know how to explain.
I went to my doctor last year with these exact same symptoms.
She gave me motion sickness pills that she said I should take three times a day, and she reminded me to take my Claratin D.
Before I went to that visit that's the exact same prescription I gave myself--only over-the-counter Dramamine.
Sign me up for med school!
I've come to find out that my Pops has the same problems as me. That he has a Vertigo Specialist he sees.
With my faux med school degree I can surmise that a.) This Vertigo is hereditary, and b.) I need a Vertigo Specialist.
I'm fucking brilliant, aren't I?
The student I've been worrying about has helped me, in her own special way, play an April Fool's Day prank on my Pops.
We share the same favorite book: Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close.
During conferences, she was one of those students I could see my younger self in. It was as if I was talking to myself, observing my own lively passion, reckless abandon, exceptional emotional understanding, hyper-aware self-knowledge and awesome wittiness.
I loved every second of our conferences. And at the same time they frightened me beyond belief.
Imagine if I had a kid. Or a sibling who could be my kid. It was be like that. Like how my Grandma McGuire was always so worried I would turn out "crazy" because I had her "crazy genes."
I worried about her, but in that way that we worry about college kids. She always struck me as one of the survivors. Wise beyond her years.
I suppose she is. Maybe that's why she tried to take her life.
I have no idea why. I can only assume. I just know that she's been on my mind this week. During faculty meetings, while teaching, at the same time I'm frustrated at myself for not being able to do a hand stand during morning yoga.
"I will try to understand everything has its plan."
I'm thinking I might have to go to this Vertigo Specialist if I don't stop swaying.
I'm thinking "Either Way" by Wilco definitely makes the Top 10.
I'm thinking about the lessons that made me stronger, that made me love my life, even when I didn't know what to do and felt hopelessly lost.
And I'm not thinking, "If only..."