I have nothing to write about; I feel empty like the new wooden cabinets in our kitchen, bare without plates and mugs nestled inside them. There’s nothing to do but tiptoe amongst vicious looking tools, a saw with its huge blade on the floor, assorted screws on the wood and carpet. I am not scared for myself but for my dog. ‘What if she walked on it?’ I seethe. I am trying to make progress and doing very little. It’s hard to feel at home with the workers fixing things or re-doing things. The house is always dirty even though we paid quite a lot of money for the industrial cleaning crew. As soon as I clean something, it becomes dirty again.The floor is slippery in places from wood floor shavings or tiny pieces of sawdust and wood that get stuck in the soles of my red, swollen feet.
I’m wandering around in circles, green plastic spoon in my hand, eating bright red pomegranate seeds. Back and forth, upstairs and down, I can’t find anything. Every room is filled with garbage bags and suitcases that don’t belong there. I need to shovel out my son’s bed from his room before he comes home for Christmas break. Whenever I find something I want, I lose it again.
Found objects are playing hide and seek with me, once found, now forgotten. I never liked that game, it’s the element of surprise, any element of surprise, really that scares me. The quick motions of a darting gray mouse, a bat swooping dangerously low, somebody coming at me from behind, I have been known to scream as if a murder was taking place in my room. It’s called the startle reflex and I correlate it with my being six weeks premature and in a hospital for over four weeks. Of course, I despise surprises.
We may have moved in too early as odd as that sounds. We’re in the way of the people working here, the old refrigerator covered by the blue tarp is now our lawn ornament. I had hoped someone would want it and take it away but no one came and the contractor will move it away on his truck. A good deed gone sour.
We have no curtains, we are using black garbage bags on our windows. I can’t cook or bake yet because the kitchen is not clean and there are no clean surfaces; the guys are finishing things in every room, all the time. Our old oven sits silently, resentfully, among other new shiny items. The dishwasher has pretty blue lights, like that of a bluebird, that make me happy. I don’t have to look at garbage anymore or smell its rotten odor, there’s a garbage can built-in to the cabinet. The wooden cabinets have handles that I picked and I love them, when I look at them they seem to smile back at me.
I am back in our cozy home; how could I still feel lost?
I don’t know the answer.