Until I was about ten, I believed I had a small man in a bowler hat and a sweater vest living in my stomach. He had a mustache and a cane. When my stomach growled it was him, pissed off and creating a ruckus about something or other. He was the last of my funny little childhood beliefs. One day I was thinking about him, and in a moment of growing-up-suddenly, I realized that I had been believing in something silly.
Archive for the 'Hmm.' Category
Last year at this time, I was living without electricity and about to enter one of the most depressed winters of my life. After the October storm, the broken trees of Buffalo really set the tone for my entire winter. I was out of sorts and blue.
I realized this evening how different things feel this year. Today I wandered into Pier One Imports and discovered my beloved ginger peach candles are back. So, I am currently sitting on the couch, basking in my favorite smell, alternately crocheting and clacking away at my computer, with the soft sounds of a meaningless (to me) hockey game keeping me company. I’m utterly content.
Life is good.
Last night I had one of those intense dreams where you have to go back to college, but you aren’t prepared. Unlike the typical back-to-school dreams, I mostly had my shit together. I mean, I knew where all my classes were, I had all my books, I knew my locker combination, and I was fully clothed. The trouble in this particular dream was that I didn’t know where I was going to store all the stuff that I currently own once I moved into a dorm room.
I had an anxiety dream about owning too many things.
Only in America.
Today was one of those days when each hour brings some new reminder to stay alert. Several times today I wanted to curl up and be sad, and several times I was reminded of why I should chose to be grateful. At one point a total stranger made me feel furious and hurt, and later a different stranger’s tragedy made me ache with empathy and sorrow. One stranger threatened my perspective, and another restored it.
It was an even day. For me.
It’s not always this way.
1. Mountains or beaches?
2. Internet or television?
3. Dogs or cats?
So there you were, just a lonely lady astronaut.
People don’t understand just how hard it is. You worked so hard, for so long. People kept telling you that going up into space was a ridiculous dream- a childish dream, but you kept at it. You kept at it because you wanted to see earth from above. You wanted to be weightless. You wanted to become an astronaut. Against all odds, you did it. You became an astronaut. You went to the space station. You saw the earth from the sky. It was amazing.
Then you got back, and suddenly everything was so…flat.
You have a very hard time dating because, well, you’re an astronaut now. It’s hard to find a guy that isn’t intimidated by your profession. There really aren’t too many jobs sexier and cooler than "astronaut". When you first meet a guy, you try to avoid the topic of your profession. You even tried lying about it a few times, but eventually, they always found out. That one guy, the dog trainer, he stopped talking to you once he found out, claiming that "Ms. Rocket Scientist Alien Chaser" was too snobby to date a lowly earth-walking man. It was humiliating. Humiliating and infuriating. The world does not treat male astronauts this way.
You had all but given up on men.
Then, you met him. You had heard the stories about him. He was quite the ladies man, using his job title to his full advantage. At first you didn’t really like him- you found him a bit arrogant. But he was so funny. You didn’t expect that from him. Usually astronauts are so stiff and regimented- obsessed with science and protocol and proper diets, that sort of thing. He wasn’t like that. He was goofy and fun. He grew on you. Finally, here was a guy who understood. He understood everything that you had been through and sacrificed for NASA. He had the same interests and dreams. One time, the two of you went out for drinks and talked about what it felt like to be up there, looking down on all of your earthly troubles. Talking to him like that…. it brought you back. Talking and laughing with this man could return you to the weightless freedom of space. It was breathtaking. You loved this man because he understood your perspective. He had seen earth from the sky too.
It had the makings of a great love story.
Sooooo, then you got some pepper spray, and some adult diapers.
It’s a tale as old as time.