I’m sleeping deeply, and long, waking without identity or place, gathering elements of my life from the ceiling over my bed as my eyes blink open. My brother, at work, my mom, in the living room, my friends, in New York and Sydney, my family, in Seattle, my dad, in Portland, my rabbit, in the closet.
My mom leaves for Seattle in a week; my brother will meet her in Portland a week later. His belongings and cat are currently under our dad’s care; he’s working a temporary job that will probably not allow him to support my mom. The family renting their house in Salem moves out in a week as well; it is now up for sale for perhaps the fourth time in three years. If it sells, my mom could build a home for herself that does not hold associations of her thirty years as a housewife married to my dad. Until it sells, she’s not sure how she’ll cover the house payment and her own expenses.
I’m grateful her sisters and parents will be in Seattle to offer emotional support. I’m jealous she gets to attend my cousin’s baby’s first birthday party at the end of May- happy birthday, Luke, we love your smiling monkey face. I can’t wait to see you toddling around.
Ironically, I’ll be in Suckallo alone for most of June. The coming weeks will cast light on a great many shadowed possibilities: whether my mom and brother will want to (or have to) stay in the Northwest, whether I should follow them or take an opportunity in New York (more on that later), whether aliens will really land on my roof as I keep expecting them too.
I walk to work drinking tea and listening to Brandi Carlisle as the breeze ruffles the leaves overhead; I walk home to talk to my mom, watch a movie or play Soul Caliber with my brother. We drink too much, the cat rolls on the carpet; the rabbit stretches out in his pile of hay; the sun shines more than it did last month.
In my dreams I share a tempting moment with a man, but can’t act on my desires because I still want Marcus. In waking life, I feel like six months have passed since he and I were together, and yet I often have to remind myself that I’m free to admire or reach out to anyone else. The other day I described to my friend José the care packages of emotional energy I spent five months sending back to England; clearly I have yet to collect them all again.
I admit that a year after saying goodbye to my last full time job, I write no more, and perhaps less, than I did then. I certainly dread sitting down at the keyboard as much now as I did. I used to blame that dread on the isolation writing imposed, on my doubt that the work would find an audience, on a lack of self-esteem, but I find it more and more difficult to care why I don’t want to transfer words to paper. I’ve circled this problem for years; regardless of causes, I hate writing.
Present blogs excluded.