Before sunrise, I drove home in silence.
I’m waiting for it. — The aftershock.
Even good things take their toll. And, after riding high for months, flying back at a normal altitude is like returning home after an earthquake. — Nothing is where is was before. — And, when you try to return your possessions to their rightful places on the shelf — it’s all wrong. Things have changed.
In the quiet cab of my car, I think about them — Earthquakes. Cracked foundations. Dismantled shelves.
I look out at the red lights that bleed across my dash and wonder — how did I arrange all this? Where do I put these old pieces that seek to feel new? I’ve returned from my own dream and I’ve forgotten where everything belongs. I try to squeeze my whole world onto one shelf.
Sobriety isn’t easy. I keep finding, that as the dust settles, I’m still surrounded by rubble. I return to the site of my earthquake, often. Some days it feels impossible to rebuild. Long stretches where even a feeling is just too much to process — I’m tired of surveying my own damage. Sometimes, I miss being numb.
This old place looks new. I’m not sure what happened. I long for things that I understand — that I recognize. I miss a comfort that I’ll never feel again. I grasp at my idealism, the thing I once carried so easily, as it snakes through my fingers.
I need this — quiet. The low purr of the engine. The plastic Jiffy-Lube sticker, curling off the corner of the windshield. Air whistling through the cracked, driver’s side window. The heater vents all at full steam. I manage these environs with ease as I sit behind the wheel at 6:20AM, wearing my pink, pajama pants — driving slowly — eyes peeled for falling rocks.
At the four way stop I push my foot down on the break and I feel the corners of my eyes holding back giant tears — two oval levees, moments from breaking. I release the pedal and give it the gas. Tears fall, heavy, onto my grey sweatshirt. I don’t make a sound.
At home, the cat meows at my feet. I sit on the floor, wipe my nose, and assess the damage. I decide to make repairs some other time. I know, when chaos returns, I need to take a few days to sit with it.
To feel the vibration. To find room on my shelf.
To sink my hands into the rubble.
One thought on “Little Earthquakes”
One gigantic squeeze heading your way from this side of the ocean. Beautifully written, raw… emotional… and real! Much love xx