I cannot believe it has been about 10 days since my last post. It's not that I have been neglecting my feelings or my memories. Rather, I have been completely entranced with a new project out in the garage. Specifically a gigantic table that I am building for some close friends. I have lost myself in it the past few weeks, allowing it to completely take over my evenings, learning the basics of woodworking, planing and joining, blocking and sanding, staining and sanding, staining and polishing. Wax on, wax off.
I had a very strange emotion last night, in the middle of sanding this 12 foot long by 4 foot long monolith. The stereo was on, playing Bobcaygeon by the Tragically Hip. I had been working on this one section for about an hour, with the garage door open to the night, a gentle rain falling in the darkness just outside my florescent sanctuary. I won't call it happiness, but it was the closest I have felt to it in months. In that moment I was reminded of the last "date" time Melly and I spent together, on a hot 4th of July evening.
We live in central Phoenix and always watched the fireworks at Steele Indian School Park. There is an office parking lot on 7th street, just south of Camelback, close enough to the park that we could easily see the fireworks, but far enough away that we avoided all the traffic. We would load up some lawn chairs, grab some takeout, park, and wait for the show to begin. This past year was no different.
As we sat, watching the moonshots, I looked over at her and watched her watch the fireworks for a few seconds. That moment was my last of joy, of happiness. Thinking of all that we had shared together, and what we were meant to in the months and years ahead. I have held on to that moment in my memory so much that the memory is starting to fade. It has gotten me through so many hard and painful moments. And so it was, that on this quiet evening, the longest night of the year, the day after the darkest night in 500 years, that I found myself feeling the beginnings of that peaceful contented warmth again.
This has been a terrible second half of the year. To quote my cousin Sarah, 2016 can eat a dick. To be able to feel even the tiniest hint of happiness again makes me hopeful for the year to come. I am headed back east, to Boston, for the Christmas week. I hope to have more posts up before then, as well as during my trip. I think in a lot of ways, my writing vacation has helped clear up some of the thoughts in my head and allowed new thoughts and interests to flourish. One thing is certain, there is life after. I think I may have seen and felt those first green shoots. Time will tell, as it always does.