I have caffeine today.
I’ve given up caffeine lately, but when I looked in the mirror at my second wake up this morning, I was horrified. The first wake up happened when it started raining and I realized I left my car windows wide open last night. After a mad dash in the rain, I went back to bed for half an hour and reluctantly woke up on time. And I looked like hell.
It’s been a good few months, with a few bad weeks mixed in. That’s normal. Baxter and I have continued to walk every night, enjoying the woods and the cool and warm and sun and rain. I let him swim in the pond but not in the river (one is muddier than the other) and when he swims I sit on the bank and listen to a book or some music and daydream a bit. On weekends we walk twice — morning and night — and I prefer the morning walks for being solitary, but Baxter will stare at me for hours until I give up and walk him at night.
I was thinking, as I drove to work this morning, about the Cape and how much it no longer is ‘my place.’ When I was growing up, the Cape was home. It’s where all my happiest memories lived. But, then, back then I thought I’d want to live in NYC when I grew up, or some tiny town on an island. Neither is appealing to me now, so it shouldn’t surprise me that I don’t feel like the is my home now.
I have always wanted to belong more than anything else in my life. And I’ve never really found the place that fits me like a mold, or that I could adapt to fit to. The closest I came was in Ireland, because it was a place free of expectations or major responsibility and it was so freeing to be there.
I felt sad last night because I smelled barbecues in the air: it’s summer and people are celebrating with the people they love, family and friends, and belonging. It’s my own fault that I don’t. I’m still here, after all. I’m not going to rehash the reasons why, but they haven’t changed.
In a slightly pisspoor mood, then, I bought a soda and brooded. I started thinking about how lately I feel like I have to make an effort to be a decent person. I mean, I’m not actively evil — I’m no Disney villain (not even a rehabilitated villain, a la Malifecent). I’m not actively unkind, it’s not my nature. But moving beyond benign to decent is a stretch. If you could hear the thoughts in my head about everyone, from the guy walking into Whole Foods with his sweatshirt tied around his neck to the customer with the frazzled attitude. I’m judgmental, is the problem, and I have no standing to be judging anyone. Be a decent person! Don’t just look away when things happen. Be more thoughtful. Be more actively kind. Stop being judgmental. Stop being an asshole. Stop being burnt out. Stop being a chicken.
No one is better at lecturing me than me.