I keep a lot of lists.
Groceries to buy.
Things to do.
Buildings to feature on Historic Indianapolis.
Cards to send.
Bills to pay.
Blog posts to create.
Books I've read.
Movies I've watched.
Wines I've tried.
I have a lot of lists.
And, this week, I'm keeping a list of all the terrible things that have happened.
Fearing, and then confirming, that my mother is ill.
Losing the opportunity to tour a house.
Hearing that a happy couple suffered a miscarriage.
Admitting to myself that I don't want to live in my apartment anymore.
Having to cope with racism, hatred, name-calling, partisanship, suspicion, conspiracies, and conflicts.
Learning that my mother has lost her job.
The "What are we doing?" talk-not-really-a-talk between my Hans and I.
A list of the emotions.
It's just one of those days.
One of those days when, after hearing from your mother, you set your phone down and hang your head in your hands, fighting tears at your office desk. Shaking your head and breathing deep because you can't be bothered; not here, not now. Later. Later, when you can crawl into your sweatpants and eat monster cookies and sob quietly into the sheets. One of those days when, after pulling your car into its usual space, you turn off the heat, turn off the headlights. But you're not ready to go inside. Not yet. No, you sit there, gripping the steering wheel and finally letting the tears fall into your lap. You leave the car running, a Foo Fighters song playing. You hate the Foo Fighters. But you keep listening, and you take comfort in the sound. The lyrics and noises and half-screams are a way to stave off sadness, just like a television's background noise almost convinces you that you're not alone.
But then there are "some days."
Days when you're just at a loss. Days when you want to crawl into your childhood, into your past, into your old life and your old home. Barefoot and innocent. Days when you want to fix everything, when you want to say all the words, when you want to do anything but realize damn it people are dying and I can't remove heartbreak. When you wonder how you're going to take care of your mom. How you're going to move her to where you are. If you even can. How you will even survive when you feel you'll never be good enough. You'll always be poor, always drive a leaking and rusted-out car, always live in some half-forgotten structure with malady upon malady. You'll always be...
That you're going to be alone ... because you can never make a decision. Because, instead, you've bundled yourself in sweats and sheets, making mental lists of all the things you're afraid of.