The obsession fades as quickly as it came, draining out of me, a bit more each day, until I have days where I don’t even think about him until the afternoon, until the evening, and it drains, dripping, leaving me where I feared I’d be, alone with myself, with what feels some days like a long list of failures and a sharp craving for connection.
I’ve been crying like a motherfucker lately.
I didn’t cry when my husband left me, or when I had to leave the city I called home, or when I got so broke I didn’t know how I’d pay rent. But now I cry every single fucking day, usually the radio or the television or a line in some book, usually over some kind of gesture towards connection.
I fucking cried, sobbed even, while watching the finale of the Great British Baking Show. I hate the word wept but I fucking wept. I couldn’t stop. I saw a woman won who I wanted to win not just for her talents but also because I now really love to see a minority do really well in life just to piss off the Nazis. And I saw her family and friends jumping with pure joy at her win, and fuck I’m nearly crying now. Because fuck it, damn it, I want to win at something, and I want to be surrounded by family and friends who love the fuck out of me. And instead I’m in Bumfuck, MA wondering many days if I will ever have the strength or the talent again to produce something beautiful and true. Has life thrown too many punches at me in the past five years to keep me down for good? Is it even worth trying to write something beautiful and true anymore in a culture that has stopped reading?
Dread hangs over me daily. I know I need to move again to save myself, but the idea of moving terrifies me. I’ll move to LA and my 2001 4Runner will break down and I’ll run out of money and be without a car and without a job and then without a home, and I’ll be fucking homeless on the streets of fucking Los Angeles, and nobody will know.
I guess this is being an adult, right? Who among us isn’t scared to death of something? Who isn’t whistling in the dark? Who doesn’t feel like an imposter sometimes? And despite the dread I’m not one to give up. I keep going, a bulletproof weeping android, plowing along, taking frequent breaks to dull his existential pain with doses of baking shows.
(I started cooking for myself. And I’ve written five pages of my book again. But enough on that.)
I’m lonely but my life doesn’t suck. I have a couple of good friends here on the East Coast. Sometimes I get to see them. I drive home from my job at UMass and the radio plays pop songs that make me cry, and the crying is real and true and I cry and crave more connection, and I make it home to my little dog, who stands up on her back legs and waves her front paws at me as I call her Little Girl and close in for a hug.