Today I left my gas stove on. All day. My sister’s boyfriend discovered the smell when he got home. He called my sister, she called me. “I wouldn’t have left the gas on,” she told me, accusatory. As she should be.
I hung up, left my office, got in my car, started sobbing. I guess the house could have burned down but mainly I couldn’t get the image of my dog out of my mind, either slowly suffocating or burning to death. That sounds a little extreme, but it isn’t, really, because it could have happened.
Emma Louise is fine. The cat seems fine too. The emergency vet hotline says that unless they show signs of distress, they should be fine. When I got home I put Emma on a leash and poured a tall glass of vodka and walked for 40 minutes around my neighborhood, whimpering, ignoring calls from my sister. Feeling like shit.
But Emma is fine. The house is fine. It’s OK.
The last thing I blogged was short and reactionary because Jesus Christ don’t sexually assault a woman or think about it or anything remotely related to harm. Is what I was getting at. I don’t need to talk about that anymore, because I don’t think I could stop.
I’ve wanted to write since then, you know, put the daily diatribes to paper, to internet, whatever.
Y’all know I’m happy, right? It’s almost boring, same old shit, Connelly doing just fine. I had a good day today (and this is where, if I were a lifestyle blogger, I would tell you how to make the vodka drink: three quarters vodka, some ice, two splashes of hot water from your kitchen faucet because for some reason the cold tastes funny). It was busy and some things went wrong and I was anxious and I have feelings etc., etc. And then I found out that I’d almost killed my dog — she’s my very whole heart and world and you know all that shit — and I fucking lost it.
I’ve been thinking about religion lately, prayers specifically. I don’t pray, but I’ve been thinking that when I wish really hard for things sometimes it’s like a prayer, for me at least. And also, how I feel about prayers doesn’t matter, because everyone can feel and think and hope how he or she wants to and as long as you aren’t pushing anything on anyone, that’s kind of how the world goes ’round, right?
And what I’ve wanted to write for so long now, and what I remembered when I was walking around, staring at Emma Louise, chastising myself for almost killing her (maybe, I don’t know, but even the thought is enough to do me in), and just loving the shit out of her sweet dog face and how she’s my best friend and she’s gotten me through so much … I remembered that thing about people.
Maybe the world is going to shit (my mom is reading this and she’s thinking, Connelly I love your sentiments but I wish you wouldn’t say ‘shit’ so much), but there are good people in it. There are, and I see them when I least expect it. Or someone you know and care about shows an even better side of themselves and maybe that’s you or maybe a friend or a new friend and it’s pleasant as hell.
People are pleasant surprises.
A) Don’t leave your gas stove on all day. B) Take a deep breath, open your eyes, see what’s good. Get worked up about the bad stuff, too, though, we need to keep doing that. But maybe every once in a while take a break, and, ya know, be surprised.