I could feel the darkness creeping upon me again. I’d been feeling it inch closer for weeks, but I was determined to hide from it. If I ignored it, I wouldn’t feel it.
But I did. It swooped in on a Sunday morning after any angry text message. The sadness I couldn’t explain, the pained heart that never seemed to recover. I went to a corner by myself and focused on cleaning a table for an hour to hide the tears I knew would come.
It’s silly, really, why it happens like this. I had been with friends, seen my new favorite movie twice that week. I was having fun. But it still happened.
I’ve had darker days, but I knew what that Sunday morning could turn into. I kept my headphones on all day, listening to music that was sure to make me smile. It mostly held me together.
I had a mid-afternoon text conversation with a friend who knew how bad I could get. Her offer of an emergency visit the next day calmed me down. As did the picture of the tiny cat wallet she had picked up for me the week before. She reminded me of the bright future she sees for me, and for our friendship(best friend writers writing rave reviews of each others books and living in cabins close to each other with our cats). I would be lost without her support.
I pushed through work, keeping myself as busy as I could until it was time to leave. I was determined not to let the darkness consume me. I was to be home alone all week, my roommate having left for vacation the day before. I couldn’t allow myself to stew in those thoughts, or to drown in the pain I’d worked so hard to escape.
I stopped by the grocery store after work. I decided to make myself a pizza for dinner, and to get myself a little box chocolate. Whenever I had a bad day in college, I would get myself one of those tiny boxes that only had 4 pieces in it. I always thought I deserved a fancy box of chocolates to celebrate, but knew I definitely didn’t need to eat a whole box. Four pieces is perfect.
I made my way through the busy store, unintentionally going through the aisle of breakfast foods. I had developed this habit of checking the Pop Tarts each time I went to the store. I have this strange love for unfrosted blueberry Pop Tarts, but no store ever has them. I don’t know why I love them so much, or why I search every time I go to the store.
I was more than surprised when I saw them on the top shelf. On sale. I think I might have gasped, I’m not sure. But I looked around to see if anyone else had noticed what wasn’t there the day before. No one else seemed too concerned, though, which was fine. More unfrosted blueberry Pop Tarts for me. I grabbed two boxes, then went to get cheese for my pizza. I could feel tears forming in my eyes, which just made me feel more ridiculous. Who cries over Pop Tarts?
I didn’t get any chocolate. Those magical unfrosted blueberry Pop Tarts were treat enough. It’s strange to say, but those toaster treats gave me the strength to get through the night. It’s a nice reminder that things can still change for the better. I hadn’t seen those on the shelf in at least a year. But, suddenly, they were there.
You might think I’m reading too much into these delicious treats, but I disagree. I’m here this morning, writing and feeling better about being by myself this week. It’s dark in my apartment, but not in my head.
Thanks for reading!