Sunday, April 17, 2011

Car trouble

"Okay ma'am, we'll send someone out there within an hour. If the car starts, you will have a 49.99 service charge, and if not, that charge will be removed. We'll have them call you when they get there so you don't have to stay outside."

I grab my lower lip between my teeth as I walk the five minutes back to my apartment from the parking garage. I look firmly at the floor as I trudge down the hallway. I collapse on the sofa and suddenly I'm a shuddering sobbing mess, wrapping my arms around myself, unable to stop the tears.

It's just a car that won't start. Who knows, things happen with rental cars. It's no big deal, sometimes the battery just runs low. It'll be okay. I know. I know. I know.

Except that for the past three days I've been having nightmares about car crashes that hugely amplify the actual crash. Except that this is a rental replacement because my car is in the body shop. Except that I have a police report and an insurance deductible that loom up as soon as I open my eyes from that nightmare. Except that it took me an hour to even screw myself up to the point where I could go out to the rental car at all.

And I have things to be thankful for: nobody was hurt, the damage is fixable, nobody was hurt. It was really not a huge thing after all. Accidents happen. I know I know I know I know I know.

But the rental car not starting today has just dipped this day in abysmal doom and I can't seem to pull myself together. The tears won't stop no matter how hard I hug myself. And all I want to do is to curl up in bed and hope the building collapses on top of me.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Falling Slowly

I picture him floating. High above me in an ocean. He is treading water and I am drowning in it. He can see clearly across the glassy surface of the water with nothing to obstruct his view, and deep, down below him I am blind. I can use the tips of my fingers, but nothing else. I can only take away what I imagine to be there. Far, far below him. Struggling against all these visions of my own devices. He is held down by nothing. He thinks I’m right next to him, softly treading, too. I’m not. I am far, far below him.

I can’t tell if this is real. Trust your gut. Listen to your heart. Don’t let your fears get in the way of taking a risk. Let go of the past. I can’t do it all at once. Am I trusting my gut, or am I letting my imagination run away with me?

“Who is she?!”

“A friend of Dave’s. There are bigger things in life to worry about, Lauren.”

“You don’t trust him. If you did you wouldn’t worry about this stuff.”

I don’t trust him. He could be doing anything. With anyone. And why wouldn’t he be? How would I know? I can accuse and accuse until I’m blue in the face. Or until I push him away.

I could choose to trust him. I could sink slowly down into the water, let go of the struggle, and allow the ocean to swallow me up. I could lose myself in this.

And that’s just it.

I could lose myself.