There is always a resistance, upon entering the atmosphere. Neither returning nor re-entering the same fold makes a difference, only that the place has to be relearned. The gantry
, the toll
, the boundary
where the body passes the threshold and the soul still reeling behind, an alien in your own room, the progression to into exobiota
Exobiota. The launching of terran plants, into orbital where the extension crosses a infinitesimal line that cannot be returned: the palm tree is no longer a palm tree, even as it identifies itself as arecaceae; the rose is no longer a rose, no longer can it call itself the terran term: 'rose' even if the bio-genus is rosoidae, for it has crossed the atmospheric limits of terran definitions, and on its return -- it is neither anymore, but an extra-terrestrial lifeform, the exobiota.
3 weeks of extensions, and now I'm back in my room, back in NYC for the final clean up and then some -- some elsewhere, again. Upon entry there is a lingering of dust and settlement, of quiet and shut-ins and things asleep. My things are sleeping, capsule-locked from the moment I left it: the books are still stacked untidily in a pile, the sheets are hurriedly placed and the sweet stillness hangs even as the ceiling fan moves, to its own rhythm. I clean to learn, to reclaim every nook and cranny that is mine, that the room is mine and part of my extension, to relearn the way the bed creaks on my weight, the folding of laundry to find placement of blouses, the position of fan in relation to my bed for optimal cooling. The exactitude, of mapping. I map my body on the weight of this room, the gravity of coming home, the dust that lingers is now my dust that I make trails of, this settlement, to skin.
And yet not the same, I think. Exobiota. I have extended, and extended to the point of trespassing boundaries, past the atmosphere of my own domain. I remember crying, the weekend, crying for the four years we poured our souls into the startup into making it successful. That even if we got our investment it didn't matter in the end, because it was a relentless cycle that could only be broken if we killed it ourselves. That's the thing they never tell you about startups, that the hardest decision is doing the best for you --- even if it means killing the thing you made. That you have to be brave, you have to be strong, you have to have the courage to face yourself and your team and tell them one by one that we are closing down, there is no more, and everything we have built is gone.
Four years and three million dollars and more! We walked away from all that. Walked away from press conferences, from investor meetings and pitch and demos and slide decks and #twitter and product hunt and networking and oneupmanship and more stories: stories of successes that flung you into fuck-you stratospheres, money flowing like water piling against the dam spinning dreams of futures and exits and yes, we'll all win lotteries and become millionaires in our 100B IPO exit; stories of horror when someone whispers at night about that time that man put his hand on her thigh and you can only listen, horrified and unable to do anything, murderous and helpless and wondering what kind of life you're heading into as she blames herself and cries.
I wonder if perhaps it wasn't just the startup, those tears, but I was going to miss that terran creature still frozen in pre-flight, that other self left behind. What has changed, you might ask. Who knows. Only in the deepest, most subconscious sense - I can see faint marks, from stretching too far. New marks, drawn on skin by my calculations -- a sentence, a drift, a word. A new pattern emerges. I cannot foretell my own future, only that I have turned from lost child to a bird, and bird to .....?
I feel.... I don't know what to feel anymore. Perhaps that's the problem with too much transformation, too much reality change, too much magic. The movements all blend into a chiming moment, culminating in blandness. Not discovery, but rather, numbness. Numbed by too many places, too many roles that you can only follow through blindly, dumbly led into progress, without thought or reflection, because how else can you move forward, except headlong into the heart of darkness
Back into the light, I think, is being blinded with familiarity and yet unfamiliar. The strange creeping sensation of something that is and not is, the uncanny sense of a life left behind, as a shell, and now slowly being rebounded to the new skin. I suppose this sense will be completely absorbed, engulfed and shocked when I am finally finally free. When my feet can fly, and I can leave, and this exobiota --- flung out of orbit, extended into space, now trammeling and burnt out from re-entering this earth atmosphere......... an extraterrestrial, plummeting back to its terran home.