It’s been almost a month since my last confession. I left off shortly before Halloween. Then Sandy came. And the election.
My fingers hover over the keyboard wondering what the hell to write. Sandy was devastating. The election, for me anyway, was a relief. Now it’s Veterans Day and the veterans are being thanked. Thank you veterans. Thank you hurricane clean-up volunteers. Thank you linemen and women. Thank you donators. We give thanks every night in my house. Thanks that we have heat, electricity. Hot water. Food. Health. An internet connection. Coffee. Pie. Snuggly fitted fleece jackets with those neato holes in the cuffs for your thumbs. Poo poo as my mother would say.
Good evening Fine Reader. I don’t know where to begin. It’s been seven days since my last confession. Today, this day of atonement. Means little more than a full day with the kids to an atheistic Hebrew school dropout like me. Rabble rouser. Inappropriate joker. TMI connoisseur.
Allow me to present exhibit one: sweet fig and goat cheese frozen custard with crinkle-cut French fries for dippin’. Courtesy of Shake Shack, my new favorite obsession, thanks to my dear friend Danielle.
It’s official. I am in love. Nyla and I have made it over the preliminary hurdle of post-adoption angst, regret and mustardy diarrhea. Okay the diarrhea cleared up a while ago.
I’ve become one of those (hopefully) harmless weirdos who baby-talks in an insufferably high-pitched squeal to her dog, out loud, in public (as if I didn’t embarrass the children enough). To the tune of, “Who makes the very best poopy-doopy?” And, “Who’s the cutie-wootiest doggiest-woggiest?” And, when I unleash her after a walk at the foot of the driveway and she bounds toward the backyard like a greyhound-pomeranian mix, “Who runs like the wind?” And later, she licks my face, making sure like a doggie in the frenzied throes of OCD, to try and reach my brain through my left nostril. Repeatedly. (She’s almost there.)
There are times when this happens: I write a blog post and then hours later, usually in the middle of the night, I wake in a panicky sheen. Wide-eyed in the pitch black I think, what the fuck did I put out there? What the hell is my deal? Why did I insist on sharing THAT? I pad into the bathroom and pee, reminding myself that I am human. I give myself a hug. Then I crack open the laptop and delete the sentence, word or paragraph, creep back to bed and fall asleep praying nobody read it.
I have deleted entire posts in this taut, teeming state of mind. And then I regret deleting. I regret it because I always envision one hater. This hater assumes different forms but he/she always thinks the same about me: that I am an idiot. No one’s ever said as much. Sure I’ve had the odd few who ask me, “How can you share all that personal stuff?” But they don’t usually know me very well. If they did, they wouldn’t need to ask. It’s in my DNA.
Here’s a little pattern I have sussed out over the weeks: I have a sublime time by myself, writing say, or taking an epic, hour-long walk through hilly little neighborhoods with winding streets, old growth trees and peeling tudors and Dutch colonials. Maybe I’m just sitting on a comfortable chair with the dog on my lap, reading a good book. And then a kid, one of mine, say, wakes up, or is picked up from school, or a playdate, by me of course, and that peace I’d just been cultivating, luxuriating in, gets trashed like a hotel room by Keith Richards circa 1972.