How many times has he moaned, “I feel like I’m being punished but I haven’t done anything wrong?”
And yet, here on this quiet, gray morning, up an hour before he expected, sipping freshly-brewed homemade Dunkin’ Donuts coffee (but where are the donuts?), listening to the tumble dryer whir, hum, and click through it’s repetitive yet highly functional job, he can’t think of one specific time when he said that.
Is he blocking? Is his memory really fading that much? Were those uncomfortable situations merely that — uncomfortable? — and not really scarring enough to warrant the “why is the world punishing me” laments?
He knows he said it. He just can’t remember why. Maybe that’s why he’s fated to end up in one of those situations again. He doesn’t remember the actions or choices that got him to the bad place, and so he might be destined to repeat them and find himself bemoaning his fate later on down the road.
Maybe the Lexapro is working. Maybe the quarantine has taught him to be grateful for how comfortable life has been, despite the alleged punishment of having to stay at home. Staying at home has been so easy, and for that he knows he’s lucky. Some people have been forced into situations that have been less than comfortable. Some people are stuck in horrible circumstances, even in the time before.
He’s found his rhythm at home, doing the same things over and over.
The dryer’s timer goes off just as his writing timer does.
Coincidence or sign?
The wet, soggy clothes go from unwearable to warm and soothing by getting knocked around in the same manner. Over and over. It sometimes looks like a boring process, just spinning around, but there is a welcome result at the end of the cycle.
The dreary, mundane thoughts go from unbearable to light and comforting by getting knocked around in the same manner. Over and over. It sometimes feels like a boring process, just spinning your wheels, but there is a welcome result at the end of the cycle.
Freewriting in the morning. It’s the tumble drying of words.
Now they’re there, waiting to be ironed and folded into presentable little stacks, maybe tucked away in a drawer, maybe to be donned afresh and shown off to the world.