The (Non)Burning Table

Awake early, but not up then. I set an extra alarm about an hour before get-up time, because I need that hour. I crave the quiet, the solitude, the darkness. When I don’t have that soft, internally focused time, the anxiety mounts daily until I hit the edge of burnout, bare nerves sparking like uninsulated wires.

Now I’m up. I even did the dishes while waiting for the coffee to finish–and I’m already one up on yesterday, because I remembered to put the ground coffee in the Bialetti.

Small mercies.

I need to have a chat with the child who has taken responsibility for cleaning the kitchen, who seems to think I won’t notice if the “cleaning” consists of filling the dishwasher with the least number of bulkiest pans possible and then leaving the rest piled in the sink and on the stove because “it won’t fit.”1 I mean, props for figuring out a way to partially escape the chore, but that’s not how this should be done.

I suppose I’ve put off having that chat for so long because I was beaten as a child if I didn’t clean the kitchen “properly”, including (at intervals best described as “random, and you must be a mind reader to discern them at all”) wrapping a rag around a butterknife to clean carved grooves on the legs and on the border of the dining room table. As you might guess, there are FEELINGS involved with kitchen duty, and I need to be in a place where I’m dealing with what’s actually happening instead of responses to what happened decades ago before I embark on discussing the issue with the young person in question.

…and now I’m thinking about how satisfying it was to “deal with” that table. Before I broke off contact with childhood abusers, they held a “garage sale”, and I ended up taking the table. Guess what I did with it.

Go on, guess.

If you guessed “beat the shit out of it with a hammer, took all the bolts and hardware for scattering alongside a highway, and let it be dumped” you’d be quite right, my friend. My only regret is that I didn’t stage a fiery death for the wooden article in question, but honestly, it was only a table and not responsible for my angst. Not to mention there might have been carcinogens in the varnish, released by hungry flames.

Though dancing in a circle and screaming while it burned would have been intensely therapeutic, cancer chemicals or no.

Anyway, Sir Boxnoggin is almost frantic with desire for a walk, and I think today is the day we start training him for runs. He was too young when we got him2 but now I’m absolutely certain his bones are finished melding and he’s in good shape. Plus, I’m on a program with significant walk breaks while I recover from a few injuries, and there’ll never be a better time to ease him into the manners required. Poor Miss B has become too elderly for even gentle runs; a morning walk tires her out for the entire day.

So that’s my Tuesday, my chickadees. Later this morning a new writing post (three things about characters) will be up on Haggard Feathers, and very soon3 that site will transition to a different model, with one free post a month and other weekly writing posts (as well as a weekly open thread) paid-subscription-only. For right now, though, you can taste-test the NaNoWriMo posts to get an idea.

Off I go. I might even escape the worst of the rain, though honestly, living in the Pacific Northwest, why bother?

  1. And then guess who comes along afterward and finishes the damn chore because she needs a plate for lunch and besides can’t stand the mess? THIS GIRL.
  2. Three years old my ASS, that dog was 18mos tops.
  3. Right now, I’m planning for next month.