On and Off

I’ve been quiet lately.  Not out of grief…not really.  I’m in an amelioration period, of sorts. Sitting beside a loved one as they leave this world and the aftermath isn’t merely mentally taxing, but it’s physical as well. I’m spent and have nothing to give.

This week, I’m a brittle paper cutout of my normal self. Yet, most of my circle doesn’t notice.  I get up (a little later than usual), I work (a little quieter than normal), I go home (a bit earlier than expected), I gel in front of the television (mindlessly) and go back to sleep (fitfully).

I have nothing to write.  My thoughts are not deep.  My yoga practice would help… so would meditation…and a long walk.  I don’t have the strength for any of that. Can’t I just say, “Fuck work, fuck my responsibilities, fuck my life”, and take time off somewhere to sleep, to find myself, to meditate – to shut down and reboot?

I’m usually a strong woman, but today, I’d like to crawl into someone’s arms and just stay there, for about a week, allowing them to fix me.  But it doesn’t work like that, does it?  I have to be cute and witty and charming and the caretaker and the vixen and the executive and the chef – I always have to be “on”.

Can I turn off for a while? Do I have that choice?


Quiet Possibility

It’s quiet; so quiet that I slept past the time that I had intended. Although I’ve woken in the late morning, the only sound I hear is the singing of a lone bird. Even the sun is shrouded in cotton today – its own type of quiet. I’ve just returned from a walk. I expected to see neighbors enjoying their holiday, possibly nursing hangovers on their front steps, driving to the market. Instead, I see almost no one, hear almost nothing. Children are not playing with their new toys and bikes today, no one is mowing their front yards and only one neighbor is using the day to defrock his house of lights. Today, the sounds are few, yet I notice the smells. The ground smells fecund and earthy from the recent rains. The air is filled with the perfume of fires in fireplaces. On certain corners, I catch heady whiffs of roasting meat – at first, my head says, “lamb”, but thinking of my neighborhood, I realize it’s most likely goat. Is a roasted goat a New Year’s tradition? I don’t know.

Today is not what I would expect for New Year’s Day, but, then again, it’s a new year…and anything is possible.