Sometimes I feel seriously frightened by my own happiness. When things seem to be going my way, I panic. It’s the same when I try to ski. As I gain momentum, there is a short-lived moment of extreme pleasure. Nearly euphoria. The snow is pure and dazzlingly beautiful, the other skiers are so colorful, whirling in the pearl-colored snow, speckled against the cloudless sky like so many dots of color in a Seurat painting. My body feels weightless, the speed is exhilarating. The sun warms my cold body, my belly flops into my throat, I smile like a 7-year-old on her birthday, teeth and gaps showing and BAM! I wipe out.
My magnificent painting falls off the wall and lands perilously on the ground, crushing the corner of the golden frame and shattering the glass. THUD! By some kind of miracle, I am not cut in half by a long-haired snowboard dude, snow somehow gets into my underwear, one ski has turned my leg into an unnatural angle, my extremely expensive sunglasses and my other ski are nowhere to be found and a little yet omnipresent voice in my head screams, “Dawn, you can’t ski! IDIOT! What are you doing here?”
Experiencing happiness in my life, getting whatever it is I think I want, success in most any form, always tends to feel shadowed by this huge, self-protective doubt. I try to just let myself glide. To enjoy the intermittent clemency. I try to believe that I am worth it, that it is about fucking time…but deep down-I don’t buy it. Not for a minute.
A God full of humor says, “PSYCHE!” and I try in vain to get the snow out of my underwear without revealing my round ass to the more coordinated masses.