Stepping Back

I’m journaling a bit this morning.  Nothing much here but random thoughts spilling from my brain, though my fingers, onto the keyboard and, miraculously, onto the screens of millions and millions of people worldwide (well, the potential is there).

Yesterday morning involved a brief detour in my travels.  I stepped back into the “dark night of my soul.” I was introduced to that strange term by my friend Kim, who thought I was going through such an event a few years ago as we chatted about existentialism over barely-adequate margaritas in a fast-casual Mexican restaurant in Addison, Texas.  Kim is a deeply religious Christian.  I am not. I admire Kim for her ability to accept ideas I cannot, her ability to suspend disbelief when I cannot, her ability to give herself over to a concept I find bizarre and potentially dangerous. She views things from a different perspective, of course, but I find it admirable, up to a point.

I was experiencing some tough times, intellectually (which, of course, fed my emotions), that required something akin to religion to get through.  But religion was most assuredly not “it.” Not even close.  But an intellectual equivalent, through conversation, might be.  So we talked. She assured herself I would get through this difficulty through the grace of God.  I assured myself I would get through this difficulty simply because it was necessary.  I was right, of course.

And yesterday’s short excursion into the dark disappeared in the light of day, a day that offered moderating temperatures, off-and-on blue skies, mostly ice-free and slush-free roads, and an opportunity to get what I call, only half joking, my semi-annual haircut. Today, the skies remain clear, but the temperature has taken a turn for the worse, something the skin on my head, absent a thick overcoat, notices.  When I awoke for the second time this morning, around 6:00 a.m. (I got up around 5:00, wrote a bit, then took fifteen-minute nap), the indoor-outdoor thermometer registered a comfortable sixty degrees inside (our sleeping temperature) and a chilly eighteen degrees outside.

Twice this morning, I’ve heard clunks or bangs or other noises of the loud and unsettling variety emanating from beneath the house, in the oddly-named “crawlspace” that’s seventeen feet high at the back of the house.  My imagination is running wild with these noises, with visions of the cinder-block columns supporting the floor joists laying in jagged unsupportive heaps.  I plan to pull on my jeans, a heavy coat, a pair of gloves, and my favorite fedora and go exploring beneath the house, once the temperature passes the twenty-five degree mark. Each time I have to climb down the steep slope to get to the crawlspace access door I curse the designer of the house, who failed to put a stairway from the back decks to the ground below.  I suppose I could have one built, but I have convinced myself the cost will be unbearable, so I haven’t even asked for bids.  So goes the life of a periodic pessimist.

The slushy spots on the roads that remained yesterday afternoon will have frozen into slick patches of ice this morning, making a persuasive argument against taking a drive today.  So, I will stay indoors and find things to occupy my time: foods to cook, ideas to explore, dishes to clean, and reasons to write.


About John Swinburn

"Love not what you are but what you may become."― Miguel de Cervantes
This entry was posted in Just Thinking. Bookmark the permalink.

Please, comment on this post. Your response? First, you remain silent and then you abandon me.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.