Alone in a room in a friend’s house in a city that is not my own (anymore), I listen. The house sounds quiet and I think maybe no one else is home. Downstairs is breakfast and a cup of tea and some quiet time and I should get up. But downstairs is also the door to the outside world, and the weight in my chest and I don’t feel ready for that just yet.
I look at the clock: 11:11.
Isn’t catching the clock when it reads 11:11 supposed to be good luck? I see this time frequently. It feels like all the time, in fact, and I certainly don’t feel lucky. At least not today.
In a mind-over-mind sort of way (there’s certainly nothing matter of fact about it), I get up.
Downstairs is quiet, and my aloneness is confirmed by a text from my husband that both boys are asleep on swings at the park (that’s what happens when you wake up when the clock says 4:58, I guess).
I put the kettle on for tea and open the cupboard looking for a mug. There in rows on two shelves are mugs in three colours. White. Black. Red.
I reach for a black mug and then hesitate, reconsidering. I have a choice, and I make it.
I choose a red mug.
Maybe it’s a sign of my willingness to push the darkness away. Or maybe I’m just feeling lucky.