I don’t know how I can work a twelve-hour day – four hours of it entirely unanticipated – and not be in a terrible mood. But I’m not. It must be because I accidentally proved myself capable on the roads for a moment, a fact that refuses to be undone by later incapabilities, or my forgetfulness being the reason I was so tested. It must be because my boss and I were finally able to communicate about the stresses a bit rather than me just absorbing every glancing blow and feeling as though I were out on the plank, twisting in the wind. And that she is working on things, who knows what those things will be, but there are a few concrete steps for what we termed “the morning after.” Or it must be because I got to see my former boss and his wife and they both looked well and I was able to think back on good times. Or it must be because I ate enough (until just this minute to keep myself steady). Or it must be because this is the calm before the PMS storm that Clue predicts is coming tomorrow or Friday (or whatever the fuck day it is, I have no idea anymore). Or it must be that an old friend came by and told me she loved me and hugged me close and I said it back without qualms because it was true.
Or it must be because I am loaded up with Australian murder mysteries and therefore impervious to the horrors that play out on the news. I refuse to look today. I can’t go through the cycle right now. I can’t endure the non-response even as there are those who have had to endure the loss and then that helpless, evil impotence that is our country’s response to the trauma of its citizens.
Or it must be because there has been a little sun and it has melted back the worst of the snow and as crazy as we are, we – I, and my attending spirits – are able to exist and get about and handle existing.
Or it must be because I have discovered my little trove of Christmas music. I will let it touch me. I will let it run past me, the bright-eyed deer moving from tree to tree, in and out of view. There’s Loreena McKennitt and Mediaeval Baebes and The Waitresses, of course.
Or it must be that I simply refused to don the stole of steel wool with its hem of stones this morning. I just refused to weigh my heart down.
But that can’t be right. I was a grouchy, terrible grump this morning. No coffee, tired upon waking, lonesome for attention deep down in my heart. I wished awful things on everyone around me. But I got up, got dressed (in somewhat better pants), and got after it. I didn’t say no when it was possible for me to say yes. This is what will happen tomorrow. This is how a life is made. In these tiniest of strokes.