Today was rough. The alarm went off too soon--4:30 am. My phone rattled and jingled against the hardwood floors, chiming in with my husband's phone singing from his office. Another alarm was set to go off in fifteen minutes, if we somehow slept through the first two. Just in case.
We pulled ourselves out of bed. It was chilly in the room, the early-morning chill I remember from when I would walk to school as a kid. It seemed to strike in the days before winter took hold and before it let up, the last dying days of Fall and the first days of Spring. This kind of chill gets in under your sweater, under your jacket, in the space between your scarf and your hat; it gets in and settles like a wet blanket across your skin. Cold. Heavy. Damp.
I sat in the car, shoulders scrunched up to my ears, willing the heat to kick on. My husband pulled the apartment door shut, locked it, and slipped the extra key into the mailbox, just in case. He got in, buckled up, arranged his bags in his lap, and off we went, to the airport.
There was no one else on the road. Or rather, there were more people on the road than I would expect at 5 am, but few cars straggled by. As I made my way to work just a few hours later I would battle three times as much traffic and would narrowly avoid a wreck, but no one challenge us this early in the morning. We pulled up to the airport an hour before he had to board. Just in case.
My husband was going on another book tour. I was staying home. He would be gone a little less than a week, leaving in the middle of the week and coming back on Easter Monday, our two-year anniversary.
I made a plan for while he was away; clean out my closet, finally, and get the apartment cleaned, room by room. Read all the books. Watch a couple movies I'd had queued up forever. Take a bubble bath. Relax.
My husband was only gone twelve hours and I was feeling panicked, overwhelmed. In a slump.
I could blame the early morning--I was bone-tired by three pm.
I could blame it on the weather--it was gray, gloomy, cold in my office, like the early-morning chill had never left.
I could blame it on my recent eating--I was binge-eating Easter candy and it was definitely taking its toll.
I could blame it on a lot of things, or I could take ownership.
I am feeling tired today. I am feeling stressed out. I am feeling grumpy and fat and worn-out and creatively blocked and anxious and like I have too much on my plate.
I am feeling frustrated that I am not the one going on tour. I am feeling left behind that my husband is off visiting far-away places I have only heard about in books. I am feeling like a loser because my book is done in its first-draft form and I know it has a whole lot of work left to be done on it. I am feeling despair that I will never find a job in the cities we are trying to move to. I am feeling strangled by the amount of cat hair and dust clogging my house.
This is how I am feeling today.
But now that I've said it, I don't feel nearly as bad, or as much of these things as I did before. I feel better. I don't feel great, I don't feel 100% yet, but I feel better.
I might sleep in tomorrow, though. Just in case.