Day Twelve – Dinner and a Cleanup


I am not a patient person. I long to be mellow and relaxed about – oh, anything really, but that doesn’t seem to be part of my DNA. I want to be organized and structured and wildly spontaneous and creative all at the same time. Maybe that’s why I’m such a hot mess as a human being. Still, there are some parts of my life that crave organization and structure, and though I’ve tried to compromise, about once or twice a year I just have to do a marathon cleanup and straighten things out. Yesterday was that day, and it was a gift to Dan and me.

With Dan gone, nothing else could intervene, and there was no one around to tell me that this or that random bolt or old magazine was absolutely critical to sustain the existence of humanity. So I purged and cleaned, mostly cleaned. The purge will come tomorrow in Dan’s closet, when I recover from the backbreaking work of yesterday. But the cleaning part is something I know Dan will appreciate in his own strange way. He is comfortable anywhere, unlike me, but I have noticed that he likes when things are tidy, even if he’s not capable of making it happen himself. And it was a gift to me because I need some tidy in my life in order to function optimally, and already I felt better (other than that aching back) waking up this morning in a clean bedroom and padding into a clean bathroom. I just hope I can make it last a while.

The second part of my gift yesterday was to set aside the aching back and go to dinner with a friend and his family to celebrate his 70th birthday. Initially, we had planned to have a surprise party to celebrate his special milestone, but with his grown children only able to make it for the weekend, that idea was nixed early on. Instead, the family went to dinner at a lovely restaurant, and my friend invited me to join them. That part was very hard for me because I felt like the odd person out, but I knew it was important for my friend, so I did my best Little Orphan Annie and “stuck out my chin, and grinned” and walked in with as much confidence as I could muster.

Yes, it felt awkward and weird, but it also felt very special to be the one invited to share a special moment and rare family time. And when I left the restaurant to drive home, the weather was beautiful, so I was able to put the top down on little Minerva and provide my own crazy concert for I95 all the way home. So it was a good day, and I made it through the Dirty Dozen first days of the challenge. I guess I may as well keep on going. I already know what I’m doing today, so I’m going to start right now.





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