Saturday I sat at the artist's parent's kitchen table and typed as he studied. His folks were anchoring a new tile backsplash to the wall and while writing, I noticed the way they interacted. Home remodeling is messy and inconvenient and stressful, yet they shared the work and joked with eachother.
While still writing, I quietly noted the artist struggling with his studies and how, despite his frustration, he still laughed and squeezed the dog.
This is a patient family. A giving and accepting family. I feel appreciated here. I still feel raw and scared but the artist has offered a healing cocoon of sorts. I still don't really know how he seems to balance offering support and granting space, but he seems to be able to read me. It's uncanny, actually.
I spent a late lunch today moving a few last things from the place D and I lived together, readying it for sale. Hoo, that was tough. The house was cold and empty. No longer a home.
I drove away remembering how we wanted to fix up the front porch all cute. Noticed he finally took down the bush in the back. Wondered how we fit so many people into that tiny living room that one New Year's. This was the place I never fit into, though. There was never enough space for me. Which is a funny observation, maybe, because there wasn't enough room for me emotionally, either.
I am good at fitting into tiny places. But maybe this wasn't such a healthy skill.
The artist texted me:
him: I know you're strong but I'm here if you need me.Then I thought of the short road trip we'd taken -- the artist and I -- and how he powered through driving rain without any hint of stress. How he picked me up and grabbed my things like it was second nature. How he joked with the clerk of the tiny convenience store while motioning thoughtfully to me. I thought of these things and realized with surprise that he handles me with care, as if I am dear to him. And he includes me.
me: Thank you. I appreciate that more than you know.
So now, I am just quietly paying attention. To this budding bond, yes, but most importantly, to myself.
I don't know where this goes from here. Movies have us craving insights that rightfully lead to "happily ever after," but real life is not like that.
This is what it means to be present. To take life one moment at a time.