Occultation: On Being Coldblooded, Calculating, and Free

The downside to gaining self-awareness is that you know what you’re doing. That said, right now I’m aware that I’m setting myself on a certain path. This season, I’ll lean into the moon in me with my hair swept up in a way that shows my face, with its tattooed sideburns and cheekbones from my mother’s side. I’ll blot my lipstick, lengthen my lashes, and shorten my patience. Then, I’ll purposely draw everything toward me that would bend, compromise, or break me so that I can personally grind it all to dust beneath my fucking boots. Why? Because sometimes you can’t shut out the darkness.

Sometimes you have to dance with it instead. Make nice with it, then kill it whichever way you see fit.

Mostly, what murders it good and dead is all the wholesome shit. Therapy. Helping others. Immersing yourself in your craft. Living your purpose.

But right now, I only engage in half of that shit. I’ve put the other half of my ‘nice’ on ice.

Fuck it.

I would say, “Alexa, play ‘Girl Like Me’ by Jazmine Sullivan featuring HER.”

Only, I’ve never been a good girl. Not truly. Not ever. I come with all my moving parts but some of them come warped and scratched. Because childhood BS. BUT, I have been loyal, faithful, and supportive. I’ve offered the best/softest parts of myself repeatedly. I’ve dated older and younger (lawd…never doing that again smh/lol). Men and women. (They suck equally but women are more brutal.) What I’ve discovered is that what men and women respect most is when I sport utter coldness. When I wear my meanness like a flashy fur coat. So, I’ve put that bitch back on just in time for winter.

(It still fits.)

I don’t know why they’re like that. No, like really. It kind of feels like they beg me to like them (like, legit pull up at my front door on some weirdo shit), then if/when I do, they shut down. So now I’m shutting down first. And I’m out for fucking blood too. Because…why not? What the fuck else is out there? Happy, healthy relationships?

Wanna know how many happy, healthy-relationship-ass-niggas are in my DMs daily? Motherfucking lots, heaux. And every last one of them are cowards. Selfish, heaux ass cowards too pussy–or lazy and broke–to make a decision about where they really want to be. Just out there burning lives to the ground. Don’t get me wrong, though. I’m done fighting them; it’s time to join their ranks.

But…what does it mean to set out to break hearts? Seek retribution indiscriminately? How sad do you have to be? How dark?

This dark:

You must witness relationships around you simmer down into banal, roommates-with-rings unions. If you’re deep into your thirties like me, you may have seen it happen already. Hell, maybe you’ve seen it in your own home. It’s this bored look of dull hatred couples reserve for their partner. To be fair, it usually takes years and only develops if they’re not careful. But if they aren’t, it sneaks up on them. Then, what they begin to see in each other’s eyes is that, there’s only so much magic you can muster for another human being and that sparse, electrifying magic exists in an upturned, hourglass timer full of quick-moving sand.

You must inherit the heartbreak from betrayals that leave you sleepless and without an appetite for life for months on end as you ponder why you weren’t enough. Then, you swallow that heartache, or sit on someone’s oat-colored couch and figure out how to navigate it. But you soon learn that “it” never truly goes away; it’s not meant to, actually. It–melancholy–is simply woven into the human experience with uncertainty and joy and all the other junk us meat-bags get to endure if we live long enough.

Then–and this is only if you wish to get to the place I’m in now (which I don’t recommend)–you must watch a clump fall from your body and into the bloody toilet water beneath it. The next day, you must shower and dress in a stupor, sit in a white room that smells of antiseptic, and look at a grainy screen as a wiry gynecologist explains to a puffy-eyed you that your twins are gone forever.

You must declare war on a universe that won’t let you rest, and you must declare it in your loudest voice, and with your most alluring yet terrifying laugh.

(I have.)

I’m on a path that will not fix anything. A warpath, essentially. Accessorized with eye paint and mating dances and brief ceasefires in the form of plastic surgery. Travel and shopping. Late nights spent writing, reading, and imbibing in shifts. An unabashed pursuit of money. Luxury. I’ve purposely chosen these things as part of my path. I’ll ink my skin and chew hearts still beating because this is how I’ve chosen to fill this emptiness for awhile.

I be boolin’ with the fairies, I be mindin’ my business
I protect my territory, I don’t play with these bitches
Disrespect me, it’s vacation, let ’em sleep with the fishes
Show my fangs, I let it hang, you want a war, I get viscous
“–BbyMutha.

I’m not trying to fix anything at the moment because that’s too exhausting. That’s too grand a task, and I don’t have the energy for it, darling. Besides…I’m in pursuit of more attainable things. Por exemplo:

I want the guaranteed literary success of a mediocre white writer who peppers random BIPOC characters in their stories.

I want the one thing from Black men that they can’t seem to give me.

I want the boundless love and insurmountable power of a Black woman who has chosen herself.

Most of all, I want something to derail me from most of this path. Because babyee-ee-ee-eee it’s destructive…and I tend to like destructive when I’m grieving. I need something to block me from this down-spiral and steer me away from it with steadier hands than my own, at least until this nihilistic streak fades.

In short, I need an occultation.

“In astronomy, occultation refers to an event in which an object is blocked by another object passing between it and the observer. Occultations occur when a planet or the moon passes in front of a star, or when one planet passes in front of another.”

If the person/event/spiritual force manages to slow me down, maybe I can refocus and tiptoe back toward self-love, softness, and healing. Finally settle into it and close the door behind me.

But as for now, this is where I’m at.

See you at the hunt. I’m surgical with the pump at this point, though. Good goddamn luck.

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