All day today I've been "off." I started with continuing work on the eBook version of LNDtH 2: The Agreement. I switched to "Blackfeather." I went for a long drive to get coffee--50 miles away. I was sad.
I walked out of Starbucks and saw a woman about my age reach over and take her partner's hand. Whenever I see a woman of a certain age--50s, 60s+--take her partner's hand... Husband? Sweetheart? Lesbian lover? Random stranger? ...I think "I would have been satisfied with that. I should have been satisfied with less." Now I have much, much less.
But it wasn't wallowing in self-pity that made it a painful day. It was having read today's chapter of LNDtH. Again and again and again. It's like sticking your tongue in the hole of a missing tooth or scratching a wound that itches. Sometimes I've finished reading the entire chapter. I even made some corrections and submitted them as soon as the chapter posted. Other times, all I could read was the first section.
I wept. It exhausted me. I wondered what part of my tormented soul this came from. And I hoped for a new face in my mirror. Because, it is easy to slay the dragon. It is much more difficult to face yourself in the mirror the morning after.