For days, my sunglasses have been trying to escape from me.
They slip off my head. They fling free of the pocket in my work satchel where one arm has been tucked inside. They leap from my lap onto the bus floor. They bounce down the stairs behind me as I exit the train’s subterranean cave.
This morning is no exception. They are peeking through the top of my bag with a stance not unlike that of someone checking to see if the coast is clear before bolting.
As I weave through the darkened streets of downtown, it occurs to me that if I was my sunglasses, I might well try to escape, too.
I rediscovered both my Kindle and my iPod this week. In part, it’s because I’ve been taking the bus, having wrapped Pearl up against the threat of potential severe weather. And the din of the afternoon bus is maddening sometimes so I drown it out both audibly and visibly.
I pick up where I left off this morning and swaddle myself in music and words. I see all kinds of words in the book I’m reading that seem to leap off the page. In some ways, the author is my male counterpart and I see glimpses of myself in his thought processes, his humor, his emotions. Then, what he says speaks to me in a tone far louder than the Gorillaz tune that is thumping through my earbuds.
I am becoming frustrated with the fact that I am pretty much mad from the moment I wake up until I go to bed. I have no control over my emotions and I can’t figure out what to do or how to stop it. … I can’t stop being mad.
I stare at the Kindle screen and it occurs to me that in roughly 50 words, this guy has described my general state of being. Yes, I’m mad. There. I said it. I finally admitted it. No matter how much I laugh, how cheery a tone I may temper my speech with and regardless of the number of ;-) I might add to a message, I AM TOTALLY P*SSED OFF! At most people. Most of the time. Every day.
And apparently, I have been for some time. This is normal, or so multiple websites tell me. Depending on who you believe, there are either five (Kubler-Ross, that I read in college) or seven stages of grief. All of them, however, agree on three things: Grief is not limited to the loss of a person. Anger is one of the stages. And the stages don’t necessarily happen in a defined order. I have clearly hit the anger stage. And stopped.
Now that we’ve cleared that up …
The phone rings. It is the mother. No greeting or acknowledgement, just: “What’s wrong with this TV? It says no signal.” (What a difference a week makes. We HAVE the new TV! More on that in another post.)
I know immediately that, despite my repeated cautions to the contrary, she has tried to change the channel using the TV remote instead of the cable box remote. I am now challenged to do techno-diagnosis/techno-resolution over the phone. Seriously? This morning?
God. Help. Me. Please.
I survived that experience. And I laugh. I laugh both out of sheer relief and because I suddenly remember the last page I read in my book and the message the author shared from his “sidewalk writer.” (Someone regularly writes messages in chalk on the sidewalk outside his building and he regularly shares the messages. It makes me like the author even more.)
YOU LEARN FROM EVERY EXPERIENCE – ESPECIALLY THOSE THAT ALMOST KILL YOU.
Yeah. What he said.
As a precaution, I check to make sure that my sunglasses haven’t disappeared.