What has life become? Used to take orgasms for granted, like we did people, as if we’d always have them. In early 20s we knew nothing of how we would be so we just kept doing the things we needed to be doing, thinking it would somehow make us free. Free to earn a pay cheque. Free to make more money. Free to rent an apartment, pay off student debts. A nice coffee table. Some dreamed of marriage and children. I dreamed of the greatest orgasms and closeness and conversations with the right person. What has life become that in our 20s we were just building but by 30, we started to have an idea that if it wasn’t panning out for us, we must have done something wrong. But thinking it was too late to back to school, we dreamed up ways of turning what we were already doing into “transferrable skills” and hoped to change careers. Some of us just settled into jobs. No vocation. Waiting for vacation and that is what life became. Closing in on our 40s we realized that if you wanted something, you needed to plan for it and that mortgages don’t come easy without a down payment. So you lined up all your ducks in a row, man. And you hoped there were as many as you sorta planned for. But then you realized that if shit needed to add up, then you had to start building again, but the zest for life and the ignorance of youth were gone and you knew 2 plus 2 equalled 4 and you don’t have enough. Enough time, money, looks, eggs, sperm, brown hair on your head or eyesight, you’ll be crazy by the time you’re 60. Hey, that’s only 20 years away. 20 years back, fuck, you were drinking in a bar thinking a hangover was funny.

What has life become? A buddy asked me legitimately what to do when you crave spooning. My answer was I didn’t. He was saddened by the response. I was touched by my brilliance and honesty and that I obviously reached a state of steady sobriety and could accept – I’m just not getting fucked these days. “Any potential interests,” another mate asked. “No,” was an immediate answer, “But there is this guy in London” to which my mind was reminded of a CBC segment on how the most dysfunctional relationships are forged over the Internet, anyone for on-line dating exchanges – how fake, how false, how not-real. “What do I do about wanting to spoon?” I asked? I wrote back: “Philosophically, mate — I orgasm. I cry. Then I start laughing my ass off in tears of joy that I can be sad about wanting a cock to fill me up so much, because fuck if that was ever a good craving, eh?” But practically? Ok. Grab a pillow, I told him. Don’t watch porn. Read a good book. Better yourself, she will come. “Literally,” and I laughed.

What has life become that we are not content with shitty sex with one we love and die as we watch love die and a relationship putting too much fucking stress on our lives. Life has become alright being single without the hassle, but the sharp desire for intercourse, penetration, making love, making out, kissing, loving, touching, cuddling and holding someone you really care about persists. It’s there, but that’s what writing’s for. One time, I had this lover who would linger for hours just watching my body. Figured he was a designer, and was watching the angles. He’d take pictures. So many pictures. We were on-again, off-again for a few months and one morning, he started staring, instead of bolting, which we both knew was inevitable cause we weren’t working. “Why do you stare so much,” I asked. He said: “Because I have no idea when I’ll see you naked like this again.” So sometimes when I see him outside the pub, and I give him a hug, and he holds me fiercely like it was the first time or his last, I know front his mind, and my mind, are those moments like that. He says he’ll never have it again that I was the One. Silly man. His mind so tight, his thoughts terse that I was the One.

Life may be becoming a time where I’m going to sell off my presentable Leon’s bedroom suite, roll over the condo pay off debts accumulating and fuck off to Japan, teach and each sushi. Practice Zen Buddhism by a fucking tree. Why is it lonely? Where are friends? Older, we break off into partnerships and those are the ones who support each other. Single, you’re fucked. Stating pleasantries on phone calls to busy friends before cutting to the chase: “Um, I think I’m having a heart attack, can you meet me at the hospital.” Yeh, yeh, in sickness and in health with a lover, partner and supporter in arms we do away with formality and cut to the chase, elate or boast of pleasantries (I never did – a man rarely supported me talking of sexy things in poetry or writing) or don’t sugar coat that we need help, immediately.

Life has become a place where you balance craving with disease. Where I look back on a life lived between men’s hairy legs and God love all the blokes who were there for me at the end of drunken evenings. That rush, that need, that drug and love and touch filling me — by God, I was never going to marry young and have kiddies. I write this with fervor as an armpit leaks sweat from a feverish expression, I’m totally naked, (no time to dress!), as I think that you walk a fine line between balancing it all, keeping it in check. ‘Cause even when you’re craving, when you get what you want you may get bored. Like a mate said, “It’s always fun at the beginning.” And once, then, deterred. That potential boredom of a longterm relationship turned me off, psychologically, and scared the Poet inside me, made me perhaps choose ill-suited partners just so I could keep writing. That, and I’ve absolutely no role models for proper loving. None that showed me how to have friends. I lived in full anxiety that I wasn’t accepted, and carry on better with people from afar concentrating on supporting my life through career and pursuits that help others connect to their innards.

An old lady-neighbour I ran into recently, said: “Marriage isn’t a necessity.” And I would never choose a Man simply because I was ‘tired of looking.’ One day you’re single. The next you’re not. One morning you’re having sex. The next you’re not. One minute you’re alive. You’re alive…

And that’s the point. Life has become just being happy and pleased that I’m alive enough to have felt love and been loved by spectacular men (save one who was just trying to prove to his father he was responsible). To orgasm alone or one day with someone. To write.

Life has become … feeling, ‘becoming’ to oneself in learning wisdom through sickness, in having a laugh in health.

©Sylvie Hill 2013