3 05 2011


Payne left a few days ago. He flew to London promoting a translation and release of one of his books. As soon as he is gone, he’s gone. No email, no phone-call, no nothing. This is a big deal, as we are in constant communication – admittedly, a lot of our communication consists of bickering and outright fighting, but our connection is always intense, swinging sharply between hateful and mean and obsessive love between us.

What I never tell anybody, especially not Payne, is that my day, no, my life, doesn’t start until I talk or email with him. During those years, it doesn’t occur to me that this is an addiction in itself. I have no center, no sense of myself. Payne is my life force and everything I do or not do, is about winning and losing and winning his approval.

It will be years until I start to understand this. Years of living like a hungry ghost, never feeling my own feelings, never thinking my own thoughts. Payne occupies my mind like a parasite that leaves no room for me. Most of the time, I think with his brain, as he was sitting in there, instructing my thoughts.

Don’t get me wrong – I’m a very opinioned and outspoken woman, when I’m by myself and before I met him. But disagreeing with him on anything causes so much rage from him, that I allow his residency in my mind for the sake of peace.

I’m supposed to meet him in London to fly to Vienna to meet my family with him.

But now that he is seemingly disappeared, my obsessive brain is out of control. What if he changed his mind and doesn’t want to meet my family? What if he has fallen in love in London with a more powerful, more beautiful and less insecure women? What if he has realized that he can do better than be in this constant war with me? My thoughts are driving me crazy.

After the first day of no sign from him, I get that hollow and panicky feeling in my heart. I am in a state of worry, jealousy and anxiety – and then I realize that after all those years in California, I have no winter clothes anymore.

The only positive effect that his disappearing acts have on me, is that I can’t eat when I’m so obsessed and in my shrinking world of my Eating Disorder and Love-Addiction, this counts for almost as much as an order from Barney’s. My value system is so out of whack, it takes my entire intellectual – or what is left of it at this point – powers, to run my flailing business.

I get myself to the fabric store and design a coat. When it is done, it looks fantastic: long and narrow, with tight extra long sleeves, made from the most expensive fabric I can find – charcoal cashmere with a leopard print silk charmeuse lining.

But at least, I have the ticket, first class, like usually. He is always generous that way.

I look elegant, tall and lean and when I get on the plane, with no idea if he will show up in London, I feel like I belong in first class. I flirt all night with a married screenwriter, but still the nagging doubt about why Payne has not talked to me for three days, makes me fidgety and not quite present. When we are about to land, my flirt asks for my contact info and I chicken out. I give him a wrong number and hastily flee the plane.

Payne is there! He sits on a bench, typing away on his lap-top  He looks tired and embarrassed, even a little bit guilty, but like usually, when he looks me over, his face lights up.

I am so ecstatic and happy that he is here – the feeling of love and my need for him – it is need much more than love – flood me like a hit of heroin. I know better than to ask anything that could arouse his anger about “being checked up on” and destroy my high.

We hold hands all the way on the flight to Vienna; we are in love and can’t wait to get to the hotel he picked. Hotel Trieste, a chic and hip, extremely expensive, but tranquil hotel that is elegant and modern at the same time. My guy has taste.

As soon as we drop our bags in the middle of the luxurious suite, he unbuttons my coat and throws me on the white featherbed. The sex is so intense, that I forget for now that I don’t trust him, that I have way to many ideas about the days he spent in London. He is here now. And now is all I have with him.

It is snowing heavily and the city is covered in fresh white silence. We walk around in the ankle deep fresh snow and Payne is in love with me, the architecture, the history and the romantic mood of my hometown.

We eat dinner in a hipster restaurant and can’t keep our hands off each other. When I sneak off to the bathroom to rid myself of the delicious food, it’s just something I always do, no big deal. I am so used to this, that my face shows no sign of what I just did when I return to the table. My eyes are clear, my breath is fresh and I am chatty and flirty on my bulimic dopamine high.

By the time when we return to the hotel, I am desperately hungry. I eat all the apples from the welcome basket and after another passionate love-session we fall asleep.



2 responses

5 05 2011
rene diedrich

This is weird as it seems contrived even though you are clearly ruminating on the power of addictive at first. I like that the speaker is self aware but if she center to a frazzked friend or kept an na journal it would work better. It moves much better in second half. It is especially effective because when he is her loverman he is all about gestures which she reads obsessively. The narrative turns in tone too. If is interesting how you employ texture the writing and juxtapose what appear to be unlikely fabrics unto your reality the hardest part is self scrutiny. But you need if I mean get in yr knees and purge to porcelain hgods. Admit there is cause for concern about your fidelity. This is how your narratkr keeps him. Reverse reverse psychology?, keep the wit. This is a post modern concession. You use self deprecating details as a sort of preemptive defense mechanism. Self awareness is important and you butt heads with in the creative process. Its about what you choose not to tell that counts. Of course what dl j know? I am ranting gonzo lunatic surging w muses a condition croakers call ADHD AND I AM VIKING W TTD.
I am not Raynond Carver. He makes less more

5 05 2011
rene diedrich

Noté not Viking. Though it has amusing ring to it. I meant oozing.

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