the night before everything gets better

I’m sitting here writing this on Thursday night. It’s cool, suddenly, in the evenings–a little chilly, almost cold, and I’ve got the window open, a quilt on my lap, a cat on the quilt on my lap purring as if his little life depended on it. I can hear the trains, over the buildings, and I think the long horns are supposed to be mournful, but they startle me every time.  

It’s been a long, long day. I babysat the dogs, because sometimes they need a little human companionship during the day or they eat the couch. They were mostly cuddled up on either side of me on the couch, and you’d think that would lead to serenity and great productivity, but I spent most of the day dithering, instead of knocking through my to-do list, and generally just kind of moping.



I tried to work. I had the files open in front of me. Occasionally I
glanced at them, but mostly I fretted and paged through the Internet
and changed channels on the giant television and went to scrounge up a
snack or insisted that the dogs required a moment outside to
themselves. I walked from room to room, decided decisively that I was
going to check my email just one more time, and then I was going to
close out of my browser and work. I didn’t close out of my browser and
get to work.

The day pretty much went on like that, dragged on like that. I felt
lonely, but unfit for human companionship (“Hey, how’s it going?”
“SOB!”), hungry, restless, and as if every decision I had ever made in
my life was lining up outside the door, flexing its fingers in
preparation for slapping me silly and shouting My god, woman, what were
you thinking?
It was not a good day.

It’s a better night. Some food in me, some work finally plowed through
and finished, a piece of flash fiction. I tidied up a little, and all
the lights are off except for the one next to the couch, and the house
feels close and safe and quiet. Maybe because from here I can’t see all
the unpacking I still have left to do. I am too keyed up to sleep, but
if I don’t, this day won’t ever end. I’ll force myself up off the couch
in a moment, and turn out all the lights and crawl into bed and hope
that when I close my eyes, everything terrible I’ve thought and felt
and worried about will not line up along the side of the bed to poke
and prod and giggle nastily at me.

I don’t know what to do with moods like this, that blow off a clear
blue ocean and wreck everything. I guess that suggests that there’s
never really a clear blue ocean in my head, which is something I am not
pleased to think about. Wherever it comes from, I want it to go back. I
want it to never appear, in fact. I want everything to be happy and
kittens to crap rainbows and twenty dollar bills. I want to go to
sleep, now, and believe that everything will be better in the morning.

  5 comments for “the night before everything gets better

  1. alysha
    September 5, 2008 at 1:37 pm

    And *is* everything better now? I hope so.
    I had a horrible Thursday, too. Horrible.
    I woke up feeling not a whole lot better. I forced myself to run 4 miles, lest I fall behind on the Lazy Waister’s Triathlon, and I thought I was feeling better. But then a friend called, and I just crumbled on the phone. Spent half an hour hiding in a conference room so that people wouldn’t see me crying.
    So, obviously, my bad day is longer than a day, but I’m hoping tomorrow will be better.

  2. Francie
    September 5, 2008 at 4:21 pm

    When I read this it was as if I read my own diary entry. I get crappy days just like this, too. I know they’ll pass, but that doesn’t help much at the time. Yesterday was a sad, useless day for me as well. Then, before I went to bed last night, my mood started brightening. When I woke up, I had my period. I feel happier and more productive today (now, if I could just step away from the internet!) It seems to go this way most months. Although it isn’t the only reason for my bad days, hormones do play a large role for me. Could this be the case with you, too?

  3. Jess
    September 6, 2008 at 11:30 am

    That’s strange, I had the exact same kind of day yesterday. I wonder if it was the moon phase or something.

  4. anon
    September 6, 2008 at 8:37 pm

    If you didn’t have days like this, I’d have to hate you. And being as I love you, that would suck. So, hello, you’re like most (all?) of us. The bad days come, they sneak up like pesky little brothers and smack you in the back of the head, and we mope and wallow and get nothing done beyond sitting around wondering Why Me. And then they pass. Always. And then happy days and rainbow-crapping kittens abound. And dare I say the bright days are that much brighter because of the darker ones? So hang on, hang in, and when you have to, lay low. You’ll bounce back up, my friend.

  5. anon
    September 6, 2008 at 8:38 pm

    If you didn’t have days like this, I’d have to hate you. And being as I love you, that would suck. So, hello, you’re like most (all?) of us. The bad days come, they sneak up like pesky little brothers and smack you in the back of the head, and we mope and wallow and get nothing done beyond sitting around wondering Why Me. And then they pass. Always. And then happy days and rainbow-crapping kittens abound. And dare I say the bright days are that much brighter because of the darker ones? So hang on, hang in, and when you have to, lay low. You’ll bounce back up, my friend.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *