Sunday, September 09, 2012

Fever Room

So I had the flu last week.

For months I've been holding everything in my life together with tape and glue, trying to just smile, keep my bearing, and move forward.

Aside: Does everyone say "I'll deal with it after the election" or is it just my friends and I?

Anyway, now I think all I really needed was just a few days spent completely alone, laying in bed, hiding from light, sweating out every wretched problem in waves of fevers and chills.

Sure, it would have been more pleasant if I hadn't been soul-crushingly sick, but God knows I'd never have taken time off from work to stare at my ceiling.

So what did I learn?

1. My room lets in a ton of light during the day.

2. The new Cat Power album is really fantastic and pairs beautifully with fevers.

3. There is a real possibility that I've pushed away two of my oldest and once-closest friends forever because of political arguments that I didn't even realize I was participating in.

Social media problems, right?

I don't know if any one of us has the desire or ability to swallow our pride and be the first to reach out and save something that once seemed so much bigger than ourselves.

I remember pulling my 1987 Subaru wagon up to Erin's house in Whistler, Alabama to drop her off after a weekend in Montgomery. We both stared at the black wreath on her front door and had the shared realization that her mother had died while we were gone.

Patrick has been in my life for so long it's hard to remember a time when he wasn't part of it. I had to think hard to remember the day we first met and it felt like trying to remember the first time I met my brother. I was sitting cross-legged on my desk when he walked in to my classroom. His mother was my Latin teacher and he was visiting from college. I was wearing a big blue hoodie, feigning total disinterest in who I thought was the most interesting person I'd ever met.

4. Sometimes you just have to put on a performance until it's as effortless as breathing. It's amazing what a new dress and a manicure can do to make life fall beautifully back into place.