I like people. I love my family and friends. Those relationships mean the world to me and I will never not need them.
But there’s something about books that brings me comfort. Finding the deepest corner of some small book store and listening to the silence, the pages being turned, or the quiet conversations of the other wanderers around me. I don’t honestly even have to be reading them. Brushing the pages against each other, smelling them, running my fingers across the spines of a hundred different stories. I can forget about reality for an hour and get lost in the made-up worlds described on book jackets and back covers. Books aren’t complicated or unpredictable. They don’t have feelings or reactions or advice or sympathetic looks to give; I can feel whatever I feel and not have to explain it to anyone, yet tucked away in an aisle of a quiet library I don’t feel alone. There is something about a roomful of books that is comforting in a way I can’t fully describe, yet I am drawn in by perpetually.
I haven’t posted this week, mainly because I’ve been sick. Sick and sad.
Realizing that that thing you’ve wanted for a really long time isn’t going to happen is like being sucker-punched in the gut, every morning. There’s that bliss of 30 or so seconds when you wake up and don’t remember anything except for the remnants of a blurry dream in which you tossed and turned your way through, before you get the feeling you’re forgetting something important. All it takes is that half a second for the memory to cut through your fogginess and bring you back into reality.
I wish those 30 seconds lasted a little bit longer. I’d like to think that eventually they will become 60 seconds, a couple of minutes, a few hours. Several days. That the sadness doesn’t always loom over everything and settle into my bones until I feel like I weigh 500 pounds. That going to bed doesn’t mean staring at the ceiling and replaying conversations in my head until I can’t remember what is real and what I imagined.
For now, I find solace in dusty bookshelves and the musty smell of an old bookstore. In words and pictures and simply just being around the written word of a thousand different authors. In being by myself, but not being alone.