Drummer

Be a drummer. Just a drummer.

(Today) was hard. Not impossible, of course, but hard. The world is impossible. Today was just hard.

I woke up.

I looked at my phone and became enraged. I was filled with such anger that I felt I might levitate.

I levitated.

I wrote about how angry I was, so I would never forget this. I took my thyroid pill. The world would make sense in twenty minutes but until then, you were inside out. Apart of my sum. Aggressively passive. A camel would break anyone’s last straw. The feeling was relentless. 

I relented.

I turned off my phone. I have not done that in order to avoid information, ever. I only ever turn off my phone because it instructs me to. For its own health. This time I did it for mine.

I know this is reading like the journal of a teenager. My uterus calendar tells me today I am in fact like a teenager. Those are the feelings I get to feel. My therapist tells me to explain the anger. I uncover shame. Shame began at the same time my uterus made its presence known to me. It sheds dead cells. I am going to leave dead bodies. You are dead to me. 

I relent.

I turn my phone back on. The thing about anger buddhists will all tell you is that it teaches you something about yourself every time. I’d made a dress to understand it, a meal of it, a habit, a practice, a routine, of spelling it out across drum heads that bite back.

(Tonight), I ran into another drummer at the studio. A bunch of us were leaving the building at the same time. He’d noticed I was drumming alone, which is to say I do not play in a band. I don’t rehearse. 

“Do you just play drums in there?”

“Just?!” (I am barely out of my rage state I find out)

“I mean you aren’t playing with a band?”

“I play alone, if that’s what you mean. (Pause) You’re in a band. What’s your band called?” (His mates are waiting for him)

“(Band Name)”

“What?” (Am I going deaf?)

“(Band Name). It’s like (Other Name) but (Band Name). It’s dumb.”

“Don’t say that.”

“I joined the band after they named it so I dunno.”

I think, that’s not a great way to start. I say, “You guys sound great. You all, I mean.” (He’s the only man in the group)

He tells me his name and leaves. I am only there because I was smoking a cigarette. I was only smoking a cigarette because I am tired. I am only tired because I had to wait to come to the studio. I only waited to come to the studio because I had to finish my rage cycle.

The only way to end the rage is to remember that the world is full of children. Those aggressively passive camels in your life, those frightening beasts, are just children. Children need love. They provoke you because they need love. They package their discomfort with sarcasm and remind you you are a fool because they need love. They stop teasing you and instead taunt you because they need love. They ignore you because they need love. They call the cops because they need love. 

Don’t be a cop when a child angers you. Be a drummer. Just a drummer.