Black and Blue

Sweet solitude.Image: Paul Anderson, photographer extraordinair.

Sweet solitude.
Image: Paul Anderson, photographer extraordinair.








I woke to the hangover— of sadness, anxiety, dark feelings that pulled me into sleep last night… after hours of sitting alone watching the bay. The reasons are personal, they don’t matter in the big picture. What matters is how easily I fall into a hole when the world starts to pile too high for me. When I work so hard to smile and be funny, to fix it and figure it out, and make it all look ok, when it’s not—it’s no wonder I crash. And burn. I drive off in my car, me and Peter Gabriel. Where is the resolution? Where are the thousand churches? I sit and watch the full moon shine in our crystal night. The rainbow glow around it gives me hope, for a while.

I woke to puffy eyes and a worn expression. Avoiding mirrors. I woke too early, having gone to bed too late. I tried to sleep some more, but the same thoughts that drove me off to solitude last night assault me in bed as well. I curl up tighter and push the thoughts away, but they are stronger than me—at times like this. I am lost in the confusion of what to do. What to do with big things. I turn it all on myself and go from blue to black and back to blue again. Turning every slight, every insensitive word, each turn of a meaningless phrase, each misunderstanding and slip of a tongue— into a lash of self loathing, regret, remorse, longing. It sucks me down like quicksand, suffocating.  Blinding flashes that leave me frozen and staring at the bay, long into the night.

My car is always the place I go first. My music is there. My solitude. The lights of the dash and the warm seats bring comfort. It is a cocoon that is all mine. If I could, I would drive and drive, and drive some more, with my music blaring and the windows down. But it would not be safe, when I am black and blue. So I sit in my car; always the first place I go. Last night, I went to the movies next. Foolish me; I never read Tolstoy. I went to see Anna Karenina. The theater was mostly empty, perfect. The movie was beautiful, stunning even. The cinematography swept me away from my dark thoughts. The magic of the production and the rich imagery helped me forget for a while. I was transfixed by everything on the screen, and began to think that perhaps I would go home and read this great book., finally. It suited me, helping me escape for a while, but I didn’t know the ending. I won’t ruin it for others, but it is not an ending for someone in the black, or the blue. I left and drove back to the bay.

The water at night is always so mesmerizing. Lights from the city and across the islands twinkle and reflect. The full moon shimmers across the surface. The added holiday lights are so beautiful this time of year. If not for the lights of the passing cars, it would be perfect. Scared to death by two stupid slasher films, in my youth, I am not one to park in isolated lonely places. I park where someone can hear me, if I need them to. The drawback are the cars. My twisty turny brain can only think: will they see me here, crying? Will they recognize me? Then they’ll know.

Eventually I go home. I always do. I slink back in, unwilling, unwanting, resenting the inevitable questions… words, words, words. Words are my friend when I write them; words slash me, spoken by others. “Where have you been? Are you ok? I’m sorry. You misunderstood…” You got it wrong, again. I only want silence. I lay in my bed and try to quiet my battering thoughts. I wake hungover; still black and blue today.

About Dawn Quyle Landau

Mother, Writer, treasure hunter, aging red head, and sushi lover. This is my view on life, "Straight up, with a twist––" because life is too short to be subtle! Featured blogger for Huffington Post, and followed on Twitter by LeBron James– for reasons beyond my comprehension.
This entry was posted in Honest observations on many things and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

57 Responses to Black and Blue

  1. Carrie Rubin says:

    So sorry to hear you’re in the blues and the blacks. Hope more colors emerge soon. I clicked the ‘like’ button only for the beauty of the post, not because I like you being sad. 😦


  2. Crap. I’m sorry you’re feeling like you’re in a hole, Dawn. That feeling you describe so perfectly, I know all too well. Maybe it will make you smile if I tell you that I stupidly saw Anna Karenina, too. Beautiful cinematography, but the ending… um… what’s wrong with us? Ha!
    Despite my fragile state, I’m here for you in any capacity – just know that I’m in a hole nearby and I can hear you playing Peter Gabriel. We can practically wave to each other. 🙂
    Battering thoughts. I get it. I’m sorry. I wish you could unplug your head for a little while and get some rest. “When I work so hard to smile and be funny, to fix it and figure it out, and make it all look ok, when it’s not – it’s no wonder I crash.” I share this feeling. It feels sort of tragic when we take a tumble because it’s not our usual role. It’s hard for me to surrender to feeling like crap when I’m so used to figuring things out.
    Rest you’re head, my beautiful friend. Let it go. Let the current carry you where it will. Just float for awhile. No pressure. I’m thinking of you and sending you positive and peaceful thoughts.
    All my love,


  3. ME says:

    OK I’ll friend you. Instead of reading Anna Karenina try Lady Chatterly’s Lover you’ll never think of crisis the same way again! Turn your funk into Funkadelic-Good thoughts, Bad thoughts.

    A better year is a coming. XXXOOO


  4. Susan Chase-Foster says:

    Hi Dawn. One of the gifts you have is speaking emotional truth for the rest of us, showing your dimensionality instead of standing there flat like a cardboard cut-out of a person. In this entry, you are facing the dark stuff head on, which gives me hope as I need to do that myself. Thanks for showing me how, beautiful lady. Keep writing! Much love.


  5. sweetmother says:

    phew, a piece just like i was talking about today. very, very moving. surprising, yet so universal. beautifully, beautifully written. much love, sm


  6. Jonesingafter40 says:

    Lovely, sad words that I don’t have the strength to write myself. Thanks, Dawn. :’)


    • Oh, there are no words… when I think of you. And I do that often. Hugs, and healing. Though the word healing seems limited, facing some things in life. Know that I feel inadequate each time I try to reach out to you. I know how broken your heart is.


  7. Deep. Moving. Tortured. I feel for you. Amazing writing.


  8. Anonymous says:

    Love you, Dawn. Beautiful writing! Breathe…..


  9. Moving and raw; feel better! Only great things for 2013!


  10. Adam S says:

    This is very personal to me. I can feel every word, because I experience the same type of experience often. Even though it has the dark welling beneath, it’s very beautiful. Well written.

    When I read this, I saw Miriam in my mind — a good friend of mine on WordPress. Seeing her means that I have to connect the two of you. I know. It’s weird. But I listen to those things when they come to me…

    She’s an amazing person. You two are very similar.


  11. Miriam E. says:

    so restless… i feel you.


  12. Who (The Hell) am I? says:

    Hey… if you’re going to hang out in #25 with me, you’re going to have to pitch in. so think about this haiku, then write me a second verse.

    Am I two trowels?
    ditch- digging and brick- laying
    Ever asking ‘now which’?


  13. veronicad1 says:

    I’m so sorry you’re going through this but I am relieved to know why I couldn’t reach you yesterday. Your writing is so relatable, so clear. Thank you for writing how so many people feel and need the words to describe it. I’m at an infusion til 3:30 but am free for you after that if I can help.


  14. Maryanne says:

    I hope today is a little brighter. I have also felt this way and it can be frightening when the dark side surfaces and one feels powerless to stop it. It’s a tough place to be. And to feel the pain. It takes a lot of courage to bare all and be so open. You are not alone. I’m available to just be a presence and watch the waves go in and out (I find that soothing).


  15. You’re wrong. THIS is powerful.


  16. fgassette says:

    Welcome! Thank you for subscribing to follow my blog. I hope you are encouraged, inspired and enjoy the photos I take of life’s events as seen through the lens of my camera.


    • Thanks for stopping by my blog, as well. I am enjoying your photos and posts so far. I generally don’t “subscribe” until I’ve perused, explored for a while, but I enjoyed the first few posts I saw and decided I’d jump in.
      Happy New Year!


  17. Pingback: Blogs of the Week (Post 28) | Sweet Mother


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