I stopped going to therapy because last time I went it felt as though I did not need it. As if for the first time in years I did not need to be guided carefully through the psychological minefield that was my brain. So I have not made an appointment.
8:00am. Alarm. Get up. Shower. Get dressed. Eat breakfast.
The day started like any other but instead of leaving the house after breakfast I piled right back into bed, jeans and all. I did not get out of bed until 5:30 in the afternoon.
Instead, I took a mini-vacation. I disappeared into a land Netflix in bed with my roommate and endless amounts Sandra Bullock and Huge Grant love affairs. Usually, a gluttonous day like this would overwhelm me with guilt and induce jealousy in others but after hours of countless romantic comedies I realized that despite my best efforts, I’m still rather deeply depressed. I laughed and strategically told my roommate minutes before she left for work.
I am getting dangerously close to the one-year mark since my father passed away.
While other little girls dreamt about their wedding dresses I fantasied about what my apartment would look like. When little girls started to notice their increased interest in boys I feared that I would never develop an opinion of my own. Never feeling strong enough or in charge enough I could not wait to be older and assume the responsibility that would come with my apartment. Especially the most grown up act of all time- doing laundry at a Laundromat.
I began writing this sitting in the alcove of my local Hollywood Laundromat, a place that on the wall highlights celebrities from James Dean to Arnold Schwarzenegger in all their sun-bleached glory. The Laundromat has it’s own certain charm with buzzing fluorescence lights and a touch of home with plastic patio chairs chained together to make up the waiting room. I always wait in the waiting room while my laundry goes round. I wait in the waiting room even though I live down the street; I always pictured myself with a book in the waiting room of my Laundromat so I wait. Every time I put cash into the moneychanger there is a twinge of nostalgia as if I have done it a hundred times before. I smooth out the edges of a five-dollar bill and anticipate every high-pitched ‘ting’ the quarters will make as they knock against the metal mouth. I’ve won the lottery.
That is it then. I’m all grown up. The little girl in me should be thrilled that I have an apartment of my very own with a Laundromat just a stone’s throw away.
Is it as simple as something is missing?
I see my dad almost every day now. If it is not his ties then it is his moustache. If it is not his moustache then it is his potbelly. His potbelly that he would tap announcing he shouldn’t eat the last slice because he didn’t want to ruin his girlish figure.
Something is slipping.
The Langley house was packed shoulder to shoulder with people the day of the funeral. Wine and beer in abundance and the kitchen was full of cooks with hundreds of casseroles, frozen lasagnas and blueberry pancakes. Fewer people came by the next day. The day after that a few less until it was only my sister and I and a fridge full of leftovers. After a month or so people stopped asking how I was doing. After three I started to meet people who had no idea. When the one-year mark hits it is proof that I have lived through this past year and continued to build a life. Here, in my apartment with my Laundromat and something missing.
In the middle of loading my colours into the washing machine I called my therapist. Again, I had fallen in the trap of thinking that not crying meant I am doing better than ever. Generally speaking the opposite is true. Something is about to snap.