It's winter in Seattle. A year had gone by. I had designed and built out my office space, decorated and hired a team, I had my work.
I worked and went to the office. On the weekends I was eternally exhausted and walked around in a fog so thick I hadn't noticed that I hadn't made any friends in my new city nor did I have a social life. I hadn't been on a date since September, and that had been on my fourth go around with hellmatch.com.
I was completely anonymous everywhere I went. I was the walking dead. I remember having a realization on the phone with my mother, I kept repeating to her
"This is not a life. This is no way to live. I'm not living a life. I'm living a half life.
This is no way to live.
This is no way to live."
These realizations began to pop up into my consciousness, but I still did not have a full awareness of what was transpiring at that moment in time.
It's like I was a character in a movie that is oblivious to all the foreshadowing taking place in the story line. The drama is unfolding and the observer knows what's going to happen next but the character still thinks that she's in control, driving the car forward in the dark, flashing lights warn her of the impeding cliff she's about to drive off of, but she's just looked down to turn the radio station and didn't see the warning.
Intense sparks began to burn pin size holes in the dead cloth that was tightly bound around my mummified life.
I had heard a song on the radio when I was out walking by myself one day and the lyrics had stuck in my head
"God damn girl your wounds are beautiful. And if God damns, then God damn. And if God plans, then God planned me."
I think I listened to it on repeat for an entire day.
Turns out, the band was from Seattle. I had been in Seattle an entire year, and hadn't realized there was a music scene going on. I bought a ticket to go to their show.
I was terrified to go alone. I was absolutely horrified at the thought of going by myself, but was determined to go even if it meant alone. As the second band was getting started, I had an out of body experience.
It wasn't drug or alcohol induced because I wasn't drinking out of fear and embarrassment to be "that girl" drinking by myself in a bar, at a show, where no one knew me and I knew no one.
This little dude in a toboggan was playing guitar and singing and I was, for the moment, totally aware of being alive.
"The beams now bend and break. No longer can I call a home, the place I’ve known so well.
But what may come upon the road, right now I cannot tell."
Music was playing a crucial role in bringing me back to life. I was starting to feel.
It had been so long since I'd felt anything like this I reckoned it to the last time I had fallen in love 11 years ago.
Friday, the following day at work, around 4 o'clock in the afternoon I dialed a number to a resort on the Olympic Peninsula. "Your website says you have one cabin available for this weekend, is that true?"
It was Martin Luther King weekend and that meant a three day weekend, no work on Monday. I didn't have any plans.
I got up Saturday morning and drove out to the Quinault Rainforest towards the resort with enough groceries in my car to feed two people for a week and enough wine to keep me drunk for a couple of days. When I arrived at the "resort", seven cabins built in the late nineteen twenties and early nineteen thirties, the owners were surprised that I was checking in by myself, but this time, the fact that I was alone hadn't occurred to me.
It had started to snow and I was instantly infatuated. Christmas lights illuminated the cabin entrances, mossy wet paths winded down the rocky ledges to the lake shore surrounded by tall pine trees, and as the clouds parted and swooned, I swooned in the presence of the mountains.
I spent Saturday at the lake with God.
The next morning I woke up at sunrise.
I mean, I jumped out of bed and ran outside. I've never in my memory woken up at sunrise because I wanted to. Something fierce had taken over me, I believe it was JOY.
After running around in the snow in my pajama bottoms taking pictures as the sun rose over the lake I fixed myself a pot of coffee and an english muffin with butter and marmalade. I'm fairly certain that meal of english muffin and marmalade has gone down in my personal life history as one of the best meals of my life. I've yet to have a better cup of coffee.
There was a dirt road that went all the way around the lake, under normal conditions it would have taken about 30 minutes to drive around and return to the cabin.
I set out in the sunshine and the snow for an all day journey that would take me around the lake and then out to the Pacific Ocean where I watched the sun go down on the snow and the sand.
This was the most romantic weekend of my existence. I believe I was falling in love with being alive.
I was seeing the world for the first time.