It's difficult to understand what has happened over the last four months. Mom kindly pointed out that she was worried about me having spent so much time alone - a comment spawned out of one of my explanations of these new lifestyle changes. But something has changed in me. I used to be this independent before I left their house, before I had the physical escape of leaving the tumultuous energy of home. I would sit in my room and do god-knows-what for hours without being bored. I mostly recall painting in the floor, the oatmeal carpet stained multicolored with acrylic pigment, the therapy they never funded.
When the rooms here felt too silent I looked to those memories for reassurance. Then one day I was strong enough to just look forward. The unsettling part has been realizing that I have re-arrived here, that I am somehow enough and that I am content. As I was talking to a friend about this very phenomenon, she used a phrase that struck home, "false independence," as in feeling needless in the front of one's mind while holding tightly to the security that remains in him, even if he's not here. It's like her daughter - able to walk but refusing to take a step without the aid of an adult's finger gripped within her tiny fist. Maybe I've only sold myself on the hype, just like I'm supposed to, distanced myself through days upon days of the mantras, the whatever-it-takes methods of coping. In the process I have fallen in love with my little piece of the world. This house is my domain. This house that I thought I could only loathe and curse is my niche, and I kind of hate the thought of leaving my security if only for a week. Leaving means breaking all of those habits that I've built my independence on. In moments like these, on the eve of variation, I dread packing and driving away from the reliability of home. I miss him more. I feel like a traitor to the routine that keeps me from flying apart in all directions. I start to feel short of breath.
He sent a couple of pictures the other day of him Over There. His smile is still perfectly heartbreaking and his eyes and his form and his skin-just-out-of-reach, and what I first thought was how much I wanted to touch his hair. He in his uniform and my bags waiting to be packed make the earth shift underneath my steady footing. Yesterday all of this seemed so much easier, and coming full circle, it would seem that my sense of independence is completely false. I have wagered my ability to survive on the continuation of a domestic cycle of old things done in new ways and old passions reignited. I've gone back to my savior, Creation. As long as my hands are busy, as long as I can dovetail the pieces that I've made, I'm fine. You would never know how much it hurts to be apart from him - most of the time these days I don't.