Tuesday, November 20, 2012


So. We just shoved all our stuff into cars and trucks and drove away. Far away from the flat, white California heat, far away from everything and everyone we knew. We blundered and worried our way across the country to Michigan.

We had no destination when we left. We aimed for Oxford and hoped for the best. We got the call that we had a rental house waiting as we cleared Colorado. It was all just awful, really. This numb, zombie-like coating holding in all the fear. We stopped in hotels, which made it worse. The only solution was to get there, keep driving and get there.

I have never felt so unteathered in my life. The little house, by far the smallest on the street, with its rust-stained siding and gigantic black maple tree hanging like a cloud over everything. Inside was no better. It smelled of dog and cigarettes and old fried food. The carpets were filthy. The basement reeked like cat pee and underground. I felt myself going into shock. Shawn had still not left California. I stood in that house with my mom and the kids drifting around me and I came unglued. I wanted to get back in the car and drive home.

We went to Shawn's cousin's house. She knew I was not ok. She fed me homeopathic remedies and found us a hotel to stay at. I can't really remember much about the hotel. My mom had to fly home to California. I didn't want her to go. I felt like I was dying from sorrow at the thought of her leaving and me being here with the kids and the horrible little house. I couldn't breathe. We went to lunch on the way to the airport and it was like eating at a table of ghosts. The kids were fussy and out-of-sorts and my mom and I could hardly speak. They all seemed so faint. So far away.

Somewhere, on the ride to the airport, I felt a my spine straighten. I knew I had to get my shit together or there would be no way I could drive the 45 minutes back from Detroit. So, I decided to be okay. I hugged my mom, told her I'd talk to her soon, and drove back to the hotel. Somehow, I didn't cry.

We spent the days until Shawn arrived wandering through the rooms in the little house, exploring, absorbing the fact that we were there. I let the kid's excitement buoy me. I let the beauty of the scenery sink in. Trees and lakes. Blue sky and clouds. Cardinals. Like a kiss from my grandmother, cardinals. I began to breathe.


Blogger Gaea said...

: )

P.S. Fucking spam filter. 3rd times a charm.

February 1, 2013 at 3:54 PM  

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