I look outside the window. It’s Memorial Day weekend, and it’s the nastiest, darkest, weirdest day. Of course I went to the car wash. For the first time in months I dared to pay someone to delve into the belly of my vehicle and clean it. It took a long time. Dishes and cups and CD’s and books.
I’m not a depressive. But, I’m blue… and thrown for a loop at the prospect of real change. Like, you just always think things will work out, but I’m not so sure this time. I have zero job prospects after submitting 35 applications. It’s the first time that I can remember not being secure about a job in the fall. I have always landed on my feet, and planted myself in a classroom with my bag of tricks.
But, not this time.
I look out the window and see the metaphor of the day. Off balance. Not our usual holiday heat wave. I wash my car and it rains. I have vertigo (again) and cannot attend the fundraiser in Thousand Oaks that my family has put together for my fundraising efforts for LLS. I have a man in my life that I love, and the relationship, although previously rocky in parts, has a new sweetness to it. Lack of drama. Trust. And yet.
I cannot help but feel oddly out of sorts. I can’t run for a few days, but that’s not it. I have a new life in a new program, and I’ve stepped on toes and have hurt people I cared about. I didn’t mean to. I was a bull in a china shop when it came to gracefully telling my truth. Did you know that? I had no words. I stuttered and stumbled and tried to stand up for a new principle that I simply had to embrace. That even as Gallo Red Wine was something I adored, my obsession with it in 1979 was unhealthy. That mothering men who don’t need mothers, that having inappropriate boundaries with men while I was still married, these things had taken me down the end of a dark path…one i had been on nearly all my life…and that I emerged from about six weeks ago.
I went to court this week. I stood up for myself and my boys and seemingly things went very well. Lack of drama once more. It took a long time, but I looked over at the man who had my history for 30 years, who birthed and nursed children with me and then broke me and us and spent time with another for 8 of those years…I looked over at him and I hardly recognized him. Like, when did the universe take away his joy?
I have two more paychecks. I looked into the face of my boss’ email to me. Where he called me outlandish. Exaggerated. And, I stopped. Because some people simply cannot go there. I knew. He knew. But the world isn’t always fair. And maybe I don’t play well with others in the sandbox. That I don’t share what I know and where I’ve been and the awards and accolades I’ve received because it doesn’t really matter to the child in the classroom. To LeDale. To countless boys and girls who have allowed me to make a small difference…no, turn this way, not that way. No medals or trophies or certificates proclaiming me best teacher could ever replace a smile on a student’s face when I stood up for him or taught her how to be a scientist.
My car has secrets. Of a girl who drives 30 minutes back and forth each day. Who questions. Who wonders why we can’t just memorize times tables after all. Because there’s safety in that. In learning subjects and predicates and knowing that in May, it’s supposed to be hot. Knowing that the sun will rise again and set again and knowing that this random dark day will end. And knowing, that even if it’s dark out, it won’t always be.