One week to launch

A storm seized the house this morning. Pouring rain, lightning jolting me out of sleep like a flat-lining patient: I left my half-dry clothes on the clothes line last night. Shit.
Second washes never hurt, I guess. Who needs to wear pants anyway?

This is my last week in Wilkes-Barre, PA. I’m starting to freak a little and feel myself being pulled on time’s conveyor belt into some dark unknown. On Friday, Pat and friends are throwing me a birthday/going away party, Saturday I pack my car and spend the last hours with my love for a month, Sunday I drive two hours to pick my mom up and we hit the road. Forever.

There is no stopping this thing. It’s so clear now as I pack all of my clothes and toiletries. When you pack curtains and liquor cabinets, it doesn’t really sink in. When you start packing things you use everyday … it’s happening. Have you ever lived out of a suitcase for a week in your own house before? It’s strange. And I’m trying to wash everything while I have the chance, but my plans have been a little thwarted by the weather. Perhaps she’s telling me to slow down a little and remember how they look hanging there in our lush, overgrown backyard with weeds the size of oak trees. Right now I’m sitting by my the open window, the morning cooler than its been in the past week, realizing everything I’m about to lose: structure, comfort, friends, health insurance, rain, green grass, curly creme ice cream, “up the river,” Bart & Urby’s, my 100 year old house harboring life and death, cardinals, fireflies. I pray at least Arizona has fireflies somewhere in the city. They’ve been pulsing even brighter this summer, floating around the bush right outside the window like Japanese lanterns released into the dark sky.

I wonder how all of this moving will sit with me later? How many years will it take me to get antsy again? Or will I eventually find a place willing to accept me? I’ve often thought maybe it would be easier going into this move ignorant to all the challenges I’ll be facing: no friends, new job, minimal compass to the city. But last time, I was moving alone and into the kind of loneliness I could feel pulsing on the windows. This time I know Pat is a month away and having love at your back makes even the wimpiest of us pretty unstoppable.

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