I managed to work myself into quite a state this afternoon.
Last night, I said goodbye to two of my closest and dearest friends in San Francisco. Today, they drove to Portland with all of their worldly possessions in a 26-foot Penske truck. They’re going to do and be great things up there, and this is an exciting next step for them, but I am really, really sad to see them go. They have been a lot to me in the last few years, and I quite literally don’t know where I’d be without their friendship, love, and support. I know this doesn’t mean The End, but it does mean the end of an important and life-shaping era of our lives.
After their official sendoff at church, a bunch of us went to their empty apartment and sat in a circle in what had been their dining room with a bottle of champagne. We passed the bottle around, everyone taking turns sharing a memory we’ve had together and then taking a swig. We reminded each other of some pretty great times — laughs, booze, struggles, triumphs, tears, togetherness. It was a good send-off, I’d say, well-deserved and quite suitable for these two most wonderful people.
But today, as I thought about my own future, my doubts and my insecurities and my selfish worries got the better of me. Despite my best attempts to rationally convince myself that my life is not bad — that it is, in fact, good and blessed — that old desperation took hold. I felt lonely and pitiful and lost. I wanted someone to make me feel better, but I knew the only person who could, and should, snap me out of it was me.
So, I made a bad afternoon into a good night. I blew off steam with sixty minutes of turbo-kickboxing class. I flailed with vigor; I flailed like I’ve never flailed before. I punched, I kicked, I grunted, and I think I sweat about three gallons. I listened to an oldie-but-goodie episode of This American Life while I ate a dinner of sliced fresh baguette, sliced fresh tomatoes, fresh basil, fresh mozzarella, a splash of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and a sprinkle of salt and pepper. And I topped it all off by watching Mean Girls.
Yes, I managed to work myself into quite a state this afternoon. But more importantly, I managed to work myself out of it. There are things I can do that make me happy. There are people that I love, but ultimately, no one can do for me what I can do for me. And I can do this. Life goes on. We’re all going to be okay.
“I’m not tired, I’m alive, and I’m wondering how to stay that way. Cause I was young once; I could be young again. . .and I’ll never sleep again.” -Birds & Batteries