With apologies to the truckers and travelers stranded in our small town because of road closures: The snowfall today is lovely; large flakes floating to the ground instead of being blown by our usual winter wind into the next community. Tomorrow when it has accumulated to the point that driving is hazardous and walking is, as well, I won't love it so much, but today I do. Instead of working as I should, I've been gazing out my window. I can't stop watching it.
I have no motivation on days like today. I want to grab an old book--one that's dog-eared with well-worn pages, a story about heroes and villains where good always triumphs and sometimes people fall in love--and sit in a warm and quiet place where no one can find me, reading until the story is finished and my body insists that I get up and move. I want to drink hot chocolate and watch old movies. I want to draw pictures and then laugh because my skills are lamentable and my drawings never look like anything at all. And sometimes, on days like today, I wish I had a cat.
I took a trip to the hospital Friday because Adam and I decided it was a good day to have flu shots. I've never had one before, but lots of people are getting sick and I don't really want to spend time on that. So I rounded up Adam and after forty-five minutes of going places where we were told they had no more vaccine, we finally found a place that still had some. Our nurse was an older lady, a veteran at giving painless shots and neither Adam nor I bled at all.
But then I had a reaction to the shot and ended up in the hospital for a day and a half, where I was poked and prodded and tested and retested and I don't think I slept more than three hours the whole time I was there. I was released Saturday night. I spent yesterday doing nothing but sleeping and resting. Seriously, the hospital crap was worse than the reaction to the shot.
So today I'm back to my regular routine (except I should be working and I'm not). Probably I won't get another flu shot in my lifetime.
I feel diminished lately. In my head there are so many things happening to me that are sad or difficult or painful. But I feel I must not speak of those things. People don't like to hear about the bad stuff and they like me better when I'm capable and happy. I am profoundly affected by the things that cause me distress. Each time I approach talking about them I hear these words going around in my brain: "You talk about yourself way too much. You assume people want to know or that they care. It would be more appropriate to keep these things to yourself, and if you must talk about them, you have a therapist whom you pay to listen. If you keep sharing the things that hurt you, pretty soon there will be no one left to talk to. Everyone you thought cared about you will disappear. They have their own loads to carry."
When I told Darrin about this a few months ago, he asked me, "Sam, what do you want?"
What do I want?
I think I'm the one who doesn't want to listen. I'm the one who wants to leave me behind. I'm the person who feels that my load is too heavy.
What do I want?
I want a day without sadness and ugliness smudging my thoughts and feelings.
I want to run--real running--outside, under the sun and sky--again.
I want to turn back time so I can protect my daughter from dangers I didn't know existed--dangers that should not have exited.
I want to be warm.
I want people to love me, knowing it's not dangerous, understanding that there's no need to worry about inappropriate reciprocation from me--that's just not who I am or how I work.
I want to be able to recover from my mistakes, to watch cartoons on Saturday morning, to eat chocolate chip cookies.
I want to excel at my occupation, to play Chopin and Scarlatti, to have new carpet.
I want to hug my kids, make love with my husband, lie on the grass next to a friend who will make cloud pictures with me as we look at the sky.
Today though, for a few minutes more, I think I'll watch the snow. One must participate in such peaceful beauty, even if it means only being a spectator.