It was muggy that morning. I woke up and felt as if there was an invisible weight baring down on my chest, restricting my breathing so that every inhale was a labored effort. My blinds were closed shut, and if it weren't for the tiny lines of sunlight outlining the shape of my window, you could easily mistake the time to be late at night. The sounds were different though. Crickets, whirling wind, and the quietness of a Summer evening is traded for lawn mowers, chirping birds, and slow moving neighbors grabbing newspapers and creeping down the stairs in a daze. For someone like me, these are the things I first notice when my eyes flit open to the promise of a new day. Always observing, listening, noticing. I noticed soon after that things still felt very much jolted in my core. My eyes recognized that dullness worry can add to all that you see. I managed to push through the mental fog and the muggy air, and opened my door a crack to listen for the signs of waking family. The smell of coffee, the low mumbling of the morning news, the click click click of the keyboard. All I got was silence. My feet and hands felt dry, my lips chapped. My hair smelled of rosemary and mint shampoo. I quietly stepped down the stairs with my dog at my heels, like countless mornings before. Feet on cool tile, light and shadows askew around the room, silence. I watched as the coffee filled the pot, a rich butterscotch. I watched the repetitive drip and tried to force my mind blank. I took my mug and squinted my eyes near shut as I reached the backyard, greeted by the morning's brightness and intensity. Found salvation underneath one of the bending palms in a quiet and shaded corner. Things were left unsaid, I knew that. I could sense the want and the desire the night before to let all the thoughts between us pour out and fill up the empty spaces. But we instead shared a look that said so much more. It lasted only seconds, but in those seconds I saw and I felt everything neither one of us could manage to vocalize. I could still taste the warm wine that stained his lips and the salt of my tears. My eyes felt moist. Funny how the lingering memory of a moment can evoke such emotion. I always felt things too much, too hard, too suddenly. I held my head in my hands, feeling the morning air on my neck and shoulders-which were now freckled from many long days near the ocean. My coffee was nearly cold, but I sipped on it anyways. I always felt bad for the people who lived in fear of the 'what ifs'. Only now could I slightly understand them. Few things I was sure of; but to live without something so overwhelming, a feeling that takes you over and blinds you from all other worries or cares, to taste forever and then have it stolen away from you..that's something I couldn't handle. I was doing it again. Losing time trapped in the web of thoughts in my mind. I wanted to dive deep beneath the ocean and drown out the noise with the sound of waves crashing overhead and sand dancing with tides below me. I knew, with a suredness that spread through my bones with every touch and every look, that he wouldn't fade. I could never, nor did I have a choice. When you feel a connection tethering you to another, tugging at your heart and all that grounds you-you can't help but be a bit afraid. All your vulnerabilities exposed and no way of defending them. The sun had moved, and I was no longer taking refuge in the shade. I felt the sun's heat beating on my head, moving down my arms and blanketing me. My body buzzing, as if I was a live wire. I smiled at the sky, I smiled because I knew he was thinking of me too. And the same sun in the same blue sky was spinning above him.


short story by me
  photo via tumblr
  post title lyrics:
                           Backyards of Our Neighbors

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