Keep Going

I sat on the beach a few weeks back and thought I might go for a walk. It'd started to seem like I moved to this great city with great weather yet I spent much of my time sleeping, or working, or reading in my bed. Watching marathons of The Wire as my muscles atrophied, as my body gave in to the disease. I sat on the beach thinking that I had come out here to find more, to seek more, to do more. I got up and walked a couple of miles and when I came back, I felt good.

I've always been fairly athletic but after a lupus flare or hospitalization, I tend to give up. To lay down. For a long time, I let it make me lazy. I let it take control. And I was tired of feeling that way, so after my walk on the beach, I went for a jog. And then a run. And then a hike. And it hurts but it hurts in a good way, the pain proving the change, the change I need.

Sometimes a good distance feels like a slap in the face to my sore muscles. So I stop and stretch my legs, pulling them, forcing the air into spaces tight and mad. The stretches feel like stopping for gas after you hit 100 miles and the E is blaring and you're tired and thirsty and out of fuel. I stretch, switch the song on my iPod, and continue on. I look at my wrist: KEEP GOING, written in black marker before I left the apartment. I go higher.

Soon, I will turn around and go home and feel anything but defeated because even though I struggled and my breath was short and my legs are tired, I am doing more. I am pushing myself. I am seeing beyond the disease.

I am not my disease, I am me.


I am in love with this city.


What's new, Kel?

It feels like it's been a winter in Los Angeles. Like, I moved here to escape the gray but somehow the gray found me. I'm only saying this because the past two days have been cloudy. Gray's not LA's color and it doesn't look good on it. When it’s not sunny, the streets seem even more unfamiliar to me and I get lost and do K-turns (more like circles, I can never do it right) in my car and my breath catches and I have to put on a Hanson song to reset myself. Oh, there I am. Singing along to MMMBop (still), passing the In & Out I went to when I first arrived, back when I was trying to be a vegetarian, knowing I'd fail.

What's LA like? People ask me this. It's not that different. I think I might be a little different. I hope to have changed a little. Sometimes I feel like I am in between places. This is not where I will be forever, but it's where I am now. Lately I've been thinking about Chicago. I don't know why. It's too cold. I know no one.

Goodbye, mirror.

Last week I was driving to meet a friend for a drink. And I wasn't paying attention, or wearing my glasses and I slammed into the side of my building. There was an awful noise. A noise you feel in your legs and toes and fingers. Fuck, I said. I didn't yell. I stopped the car. I went out to check the damage and my passenger side mirror was dangling from the side of the car, all stupid looking. A man walking his dog said "Your mirror's off" like I didn't notice.

I went to Pep Boys. I know nothing about cars. I thought it might cost $500 to fix. I didn't know. I went to the man and asked him if he could glue the mirror back on. He looked at me like I was crazy. I just wanted a temporary fix. I tried to look cute. "Come on," I said. "I'm sure we could just glue it on." He said no. I went back inside and found someone else. He suggested I rip out my shoelace and somehow hold it together. Then I looked at HIM like he was crazy. "It might look a little ugly," he warned.