The calendar is thin now. It’s too high on the wall, too, providing not only monthly inconvenience but a sense of its superiority, or remove. The latter is better, I think. We are always ruled by the calendar, but the relationship changes with time.
November is always a big month. Childhood Thanksgiving waited at the bottom of its hill of weeks like a silver jackpot, an easy roll down from the happy fun spooky of Halloween, the idea of gold and jewel Christmas fuzzy in the distance. Four whole nights of late night TV much better than the cheaply animated specials randomly scattered through afternoons, or all the football. School defined it: a whole Friday to get book reports done, parents busy arguing about food. I remember bright ones, leaves turned but on the trees, and dark grey ones as if a pot had been turned over the world. You know, we’ll be right back here on Monday like it never even happened! Matt said this in the seventh grade, me waiting for the bus and him his mom in the giant green pickup truck. It was bright and brick and brown, all Texas, and I knew he was right.
Last year was the first post-divorce Thanksgiving. I never considered this could have meaning. I remember a brittle morning, something wrong with the windows. I had nowhere to go then, nothing to think about. I am grateful for the friend inviting me to dinner, the incandescent warmth, the old house windows, people bumping into one another.
This year’s November has been turning around. Election Day was a surreal dream, by myself with beer, the computer and radio, perhaps foolishly alone when I could have gone somewhere, but riveted, and post-modernly posting on Facebook. A friend guilted me (more or less) into visiting my parents, and I found a ticket before they got expensive. The to-be-recounted trip was good. I had a job interview that went nowhere but which convinced me holding a job was possible. I met a writing goal, started a writing-and-acting class, a yoga class. After South Park, I made a sign and stuck it on a highly-visible wall: DISHIPRINE . I wrote every day on the trip. I have felt less anxious. I miss my cat and someone I was close to, but it’s less, more than half okay.
So the page comes down. Matt is still right, but things being over is more familiar, and not a pit to fall into. Christmas is coming and it will be over too, and that is fine, more than half okay.