06 November 2015

A kind of exhaustion

The days continue to get shorter in Birmingham. The time changed like a metaphor and then it was dark in the middle of the day again and I run home now in the dark. Because it is dark all the time, my insomnia came back to me and I got up this morning at 2AM and thought I couldn't sleep anymore. I can't sleep in my clothes — I start to sweat. Yoko and the girls are asleep and fine, and I am fine too. I just can't sleep.

I can't write either: I try to not write about writing unless I can't write and then I have to, until I can find the next story, or pick up the narrative thread wherever it left off. The fact that I can't find that moment, I can't follow the thread back to some point suggests that I've lost the plot and I need to start a new story to find it. New stories don't just generate themselves. You have to go out and find them. Or you have to mine them from your experience. Find something to talk about in the flow of the days and days of the same thing. Like you're an ox walking in a circle, pulling the yoke.

Nothing is ever that bad. The girls are all well. Jun, their Korean friend, comes in the morning and walk them all to school, scolding them for walking slowly. We drop off Naomi and Jun and they stand at the window and wave goodbye to us. Then I walk Mei and Mia through the cemetery to the infants school on the other side of the church. All the parents are around and we all pretend to be good parents. No one is ever harsh with their children in front of the other parents. I walk home on the wet leaves that have fallen. Winter is coming, but so is spring.

The girls are all well. All I want is that, I guess. Yoko says we have bought Christmas presents for them, the exact thing they want. There is nothing better than knowing the exact thing you want.