Has lighting gotten harsher, or is this really what I look like now? I slowly back away from the hotel bathroom mirror, turning my head to inspect all angles, absolutely knowing the truth to that question, yet unwilling to fully convince myself. A safe distance away, I decide I’m sure it’s just the lights.
I take a breath, grab my bag and force myself out of the room. It takes effort these days. Like, everything I have to not pick up my phone and order food straight to room 1204, because that’s how the world works, I can eat whatever I want from my bed, in a city I don’t live in, without having to utter a single word.
Don’t get too excited. I walked 33 steps to the sushi restaurant next door.
My colleague threw in the towel this week and my heartstrings always snag a bit when I hear people are off to greener pastures (not at the thought they are actually greener, but at the idea they might be literal pastures), so I checked in.
He woke up on Monday, realized he was 37, had been doing essentially the same thing for 15 years, and thought to himself a hard, I don’t want to do this.
That’s how I’ve ended more than one relationship. That’s all it takes sometimes.
His Monday morning decision resonated with me. I’d been There. I’m often still There. Sometimes, I don’t know where I am, but I’m overly conscious there is a There, and it can tap me on the shoulder at any time. Sometimes I catch it lurking in my side-eye and try to outrun it, but it always catches me. Always.
As for now, “there” is living in the Dorhaus basement, grateful for their gracious acceptance of a 38-year-old homeowner (and her dog) with a solid job, yet no place to actually sleep, into their home.
It really does take a village.
Turns out, life has plans for me. And I’m still waiting to be clued in.