I thought I had said it all, though--expressed my feelings in words that I could understand, at least.
I felt like I could predict the course of my life. I thought I had derived a formula to keep me not only afloat, but also moving in one direction. I thought I had set the course.
But nobody can realistically set and follow their own course for long without compensation for the unknown. A breeze can come by and knock your hat off, if not gale force winds that jeopardize ones existence. A storm can wreak havoc. A ferocious wave, hellbent on a crash course with the cleanest deck, can threaten the lives on anyone who dare leave their bed on any given day. And luck is the only thing you can hope to pair with preparation that will do any good.
I thought I had prepared for this.
Sometimes you think you know yourself so well after taking endless inventory that you can't ever imagine being surprised with a new item. You know all too well the volume and selection of your stock--stacked and sorted. You control what comes in. You control what goes out. You don't open the door for just anybody. In fact, you hardly ever open it at all. If it weren't for the faded signs still hanging up in the window people might wonder if it was up for demolition. A broken pane here and there, humanly inaccessible, lets life in and out, but not anything that walks and talks. No, people would have to use the door, and the door is, predictably, almost always shut.
I thought I had everything all figured out. I had a foolproof plan: nobody gets in, and nobody gets hurt. This was it. This was my solution. This was what I thought would be best for everybody.
In fact, I was pretty damn sure I didn't need anything else at all ever again. I had counted up the years that I could reasonably guess to live (a bad habit to get into) and rationed out my emotions. I had set aside enough for each day--enough for me alone--and that was that.
But I didn't plan for this.
The door of my establishment that humans have to use shows no signs of forced entry, yet the cobwebs that had become so familiar as to act as a burglar alarm--draped from door handle to door handle--hang dangling, separated, in the soft air.
Somebody's gotten inside.
The faded signs didn't scare them.
The burned out bulbs didn't scare them.
The water damage on the ceiling, the missing fire extinguishers, the walls in need of repair, and the rumors of dangerous conditions overall didn't scare them.
And now they're running around inside. I can hear them and see them and touch them when they come down the aisle I'm in.
And then they're off and running--laughing, listening, smiling, staring, singing.
And how do I feel about this development?
I like it more than I could have ever possibly imagined.
I like it for a lot of reasons, reasons which are too many and to personal to name in print, let alone for the public. No offense.
But my visitor--my new companion--is finding all kinds of things on the shelves that I had forgotten about--literally written off as of no use to me, and so were instantly erased from my current memory. Space, as always, is at a premium.
They are asking questions--honest, invigorating questions that show no hint at accusation or insinuation. They just want to know.
And I want to talk.
I'm going to talk. I'm going to listen. I'm going to enjoy every second. And if I could break each second down into the smallest amounts humanly countable I would. I would--no, I will--live my life frame by frame, colorized, restored, and in big, beautiful high definition.
It seems that the contents of my many shelves--much to my surprise--are now in great demand. They are disappearing faster than I had expected. I never thought I'd have to share. I never thought I'd feel like I was running out. Supply always overrode demand.
But these are extraordinary times.
I never thought I'd need to hook back the phone, patch up the window, replace the bulbs, recharge the fire extinguisher, call the many purveyors who years ago had written me off as a lost cause--a walking foreclosure--and open the store for business.
I never thought I'd let another person through that door.
Thanks for reading,