This weekend, I was in a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad mood.
When I left the office on Friday, I went out for a drink with a man, who was so incredibly boring he doesn’t even deserve a Mr. title on this blog. As he selfishly discussed himself and his only question to anything I told him was “Oh, well, will I be on the blog? I could be Mr. Dreamy,” -I thought of the many ways I could have a dramatic exit, shouting out words that for the time being, I’m censoring.
After letting him know I was busy, for, oh I don’t know, forever – I caught the train uptown, listened to angry-rock band music, and avoided eye contact with any other straphangers. By the time I made it to the grocery store, picked up a miniature pint of ice cream and two rom coms, I was beyond frustrated and annoyed – I was flat out sad.
Cuddled up in my bed, watching a flick I already know the plot and ending to, I wondered what was wrong with me. Here I was, on a Friday night after a so-called “date” – protecting myself from the cold and perhaps, from the stress that can sometimes come with going out for the night. I looked outside, across the way into the windows of buildings beside me, and decided I needed to make a genuine effort to be hopeful and put-together the next day, as spending one night of the weekend in bed was acceptable, but not two.
Needless to say, I didn’t put forth too much of a fight and even cancelled plans on my friend J – further making me feel miserable for being unreliable. But for whatever reason, the only thing in the entire world, in this big beautiful city, I had a desire to do was to curl myself up in bed again, far away from anyone and anything.
Realizing I was home and alone on a night I should be mingling, flirting, or at least giggling with my friends – I took out a fancy bottle of wine I received as a gift from my publisher’s wife, and decided to uncork it. I had intended on saving it for a celebration when the next monumental change happened in my life, but where there’s a thirst for Merlot, the only medicine to hit the spot is Merlot.
By glass number three, I had almost forgotten I was doing a 12-step program. I started examining myself in the mirror, pulling and tugging on what I thought was ugly, sucking it in, trying on jeans I already knew didn’t fit, and sighing, when low-and-behold, they didn’t zip up. I attempted to clean my apartment, while condemning myself for only doing laundry once a month and barely cleaning my dishes more than once a week. I then decided to get ahead on my freelancing and blog posts, but ended up lingering and nit-picking at my sentences, before concluding I just wasn’t as good of a writer as the day before. And then, the temptation of Facebook became too much to resist, along with that fourth glass of wine, and against my better judgment and lessons I’ve learned over the last five months – I stalked every ex-boyfriend I’m still linked to. After seeing one-kissy face too many, I started dreaming of all the things I’ve ever wanted and then worrying that I’ll never have them. That I’ll never reach my goals, that I’ll never work for the magazine I want to work for, that I’ll never have a nice apartment, that I’ll never own $700 shoes, that I’ll never (yep, here it is) fall in love again. As I thought of everything I desired, I settled on the fact that what I really needed right then and there was….a man.
A tall, muscular, loving and funny guy. One with a great story. One who amidst every other woman who walked the world, he wanted to stand side-by-side with me. And as I hid under the covers, pedicure socks on and all, I closed my eyes and imagined what it would feel like for him to wrap his arms around me, whisper “Baby, I’ll keep you warm,” and fall asleep with the stubble on his chin and the stickiness of his breath tickling the back of my neck.
This of course, got me to thinking of the last man who slept in my bed and I started wondering what was wrong with me that I didn’t accept Mr. Possibility’s offer for an all-expenses paid, week-long trip to stay with him while he’s overseas. I mean, the weather there is 70 and above, the beaches are warm, he’s staying in a multi-million dollar hotel that’s fancier than anything I could afford. Plus, I’d get to see him every single night, eat more shrimp than I can fathom, and did I mention the suite had one of those Jacuzzi tubs? Before drifting to sleep, I slightly came out of my negative Nancy mentality and remembered another gal’s possibilities had been on those sheets, and though it would have been wonderful – I’d rather have my dignity.
By the time Monday rolled around and I was stuck in the office, unlike most of Manhattan, I still couldn’t shake my unhappiness. With our next issue going to press on Friday and interviews, and deadlines between now and then, I had more than enough to focus on – but yet, my mind was scattered. I kept concentrating on all of my shortcomings and wondered if I was doing enough. Are there more ways I can promote the blog? Can I help people in areas I’m not touching on? Are my blogs getting worse? Is this where I should be in my career right now? Am I saving enough money? Should my run time be better? Is that a new zit on the side of my cheek, I mean, really?
When the clock struck one and I needed to hop the train to meet a mentor for lunch, I walked slow (which is unlike me) and everyone who crossed my path was victim to my notorious death stare that I can never seem to hide, even when I try (not that I was, though). As I listened to her give me advice, support, and praises, I kept telling her how nervous I was and how I didn’t know what to do. After nodding her head along, watching my glass (and attitude) continue to turn half-empty, she simply said: “You know, you’re on this journey to self-love and you believe in it – so why don’t you believe in yourself, as much as you believe in the process?” She had a point, but I still couldn’t shake my mood.
And then, as we were saying our goodbyes outside, I felt something fall from above and hit my pink peacoat, the side of my head, and my ear muffs. I look to figure out what it is and stick my leather gloves right into a nice, warm, splatter of bird poop. When she reassures me it isn’t that bad, I defiantly cut my eyes at the bird, who looks down, with his little happy bird face and twerps. Before I can figure out how to reach him and ring his neck, I hurry back into the café to clean myself off, in a huff.
As I’m wiping my hair, rinsing my gloves, thinking of dry cleaners in my neighborhood, and watching my eyes well up with tears I think, “Well, it’s appropriate isn’t it, Linds? You’ve been shitting on yourself all weekend, so of course, a bird is going to follow in your footsteps.”
And with that, I smile, shake my head, gather myself together, put on my current musical obsession, and head back to the train. Because sometimes, you just have to laugh at your ridiculousness, forgive yourself for having an off couple-of-days, and keep in mind that the point of a journey isn’t the destination, but the steps along the way. That even when you don’t feel lovely or like things are going in the right direction, there is always beauty and blessings to be found around each corner, if we remember to look for them.
There also happens to be bird poop, as well. But from what I hear, it’s a sign of good luck. Right?
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