2015 has been the year of emotional whiplash for Caleb and I. It started dark, then Epiphany burst into our life for nine bright, brief days. When her light was extinguished, things were darker than ever before for me. Caleb found ways to keep chugging along. One of those ways, a job fair, resulted in an interview. He had the interview on a Monday, got the job the next day, Tuesday, and signed the contract on Wednesday. We went apartment hunting on Friday, signed a lease the following Monday and moved in on Saturday. That was two weeks ago. Our life went from black days in my in-laws house to bright days in our own apartment in a matter of weeks.
We’re still trying to sort everything out.
Bizarrely enough, things worked together in such a way that this blog no longer has an appropriate name. Our apartment is hardly a garret. It’s definitely smaller than either of the apartments from Friends, but it’s on the first floor, has central air, and fits more than three bookshelves. I am no longer the “starving artist” I once was. I can write full time now, with the proviso that I stick to the cheaper drinks on the Starbucks menu. I am very aware of the fact that two weeks ago I was behind the counter, not in front of it.
Some days, I’m thrilled to pieces by how things have turned out. I nurse my iced coffee and plow through paragraph after paragraph of revision, knowing that I will be writing tomorrow and the next day and realizing that my second draft could feasibly be finished sometime this summer. (!!) I walk home, HOME, and cook dinner in our kitchen while singing as loudly as I please.
Other days I wake up and stare at the ceiling, blinking away tears of confusion. Why now? Why this much wonderful after so many months of bitter agony? I know I would have been grateful for the cold water without having to be scalded first. I’m not the same person I was when our magic car drove off the cliff. That’s not necessarily a good thing. I used to value authenticity and vulnerability. I’m better at hiding now.
It’s going to take a while to recover. The good things help. They’re the pain meds of emotional whiplash. But it’s the exercise and stretches and time that will bring real healing. Wrestling through the pain, working through the disaster, waiting for clarity, hoping that all the effort will strengthen and release my spirit to shine like it used to.