Home. Ethan Frome. George Elliot. Home. I am from Denver. And though there are echoes of those deep blue skies anchored in my soul, Denver is not home.
It is too rushed to panic, too unplanned, both people and city. The drivers’ reckless abandon. 10 MPH over in the right lane, 15-20 in the left. No signal pranksters teasing the ties between lanes like flirting condomless teenagers. Except this kind of behavior doesn’t make babies, it takes babies.
More dangerous than experimentation with drugs, unprotected sex, others. Driving is fast, heavy, dangerous.
In Oregon and Washington, people drive calm. They wait. There is no yellow light lean in. Stop signs mean stop instead of just roll and look. There are warnings for chains when it snows a shadow of an inch. Silly, still. In Denver, I drove on thick snow and black ice on bald tires in an ’85 Impala the color of week old snow. Rear wheeled drive with an aching suspension system. A broken gas gauge and just sooo heavy.
Not in that car.
I don’t drive like that anymore. I take it as a point of pride to do anything as differently as possible. Different than what’s done at home. At home, in home.
Denver, my parents house. The fights screamed on and on. The eternal victim competition. The weight of guilt. Finger pointing. Denial. Refusal.
The family meals. Dysfunctional fucking family meals. Dysfucktional. The holidays are not the time to address our issues. So we don’t. We never do. Never did. And years pass. Our patterns solidified, each day consolidating our pain, with interest. It’s never the time.
“Too old to change.”
“Too old for therapy.”
“No, We’re okay.”
“I’m fucking telling you you’re not.”
The calls, my dad called me today. Their only problem with it all is that I stopped calling them. Unable to construct boundaries enacted by adults. Only wanting to pretend the relationship is fine. No listening. No Understanding.
No apologies. No admission.
I can’t walk into that old age wasteland anymore.
Too many fucked up accusations.
They miss you. Three days after you get back, they want you gone. Again.
A friend said it best a few weeks ago.
“Home is where my books are.”