It was summertime and I had been working on the coast for about a year. The ‘friendship’ with Lauren had come and gone. I could barely give her a neutral tone of voice without her going to cry to everyone in the building about it. It was exhausting. I tried to continue to be there for myself as much as possible and some days were harder than others. Lauren playing the victim made me so angry it felt like my heart would burst right in my chest.
But one day in the heat of summer I decided to take a nice long lunch break down the road by the rocks I liked to sit on. The summer sun shone strongly through the trees and I felt, not just ok about life, but proud of myself and who I had come to be on my own two feet. The pure beauty of everything around me and inside of me made the sting out of anything I could dwell on a dull murmur somewhere inside my larynx. Everything that was going on in my heart was much more exciting and new anyways. It had been a serene drive in, taking in the sun shining off the water on my hour commute. The summer season had given me a new sense of energy and had a way of connecting me back to differents parts of myself.
I got down to my favorite spot and decided to walk a little closer to the water than I usually would. Foregoing my normal safe rock up by the path, I decided to take my shoes off. I normally left them on. Other people that worked in the building could amble down the path, but happened seldomly. I stuck my feet in the ocean water. The warm temperature made my heart hum. It was like all my fears and concerns just melted away. I pretended that I was sometime long ago and I did what I would do if I were somewhere else completely free. I kept the story going. I said if I were just by myself right now and I was somewhere nobody knew me what would I do? I felt an instant sense of freedom and excitement.
It led me to the most fantastic lunch. The sun was shining brightly and it was hot. It was the perfect day. I went back up to my normal rock and grabbed my sandwich and brought it with me closer to the water. I finished eating it and sat there a while longer with my socks crumpled up into my sneakers.
I put on some music and looked out at the ocean and let the warm sun rays melt into my skin. It wasn’t long before I had to pee. I figured I’d go back up to the building and sit in the cold and stare at my computer some more. It had been about a half an hour already but I really didn’t want to go back yet.
There wasn’t anything left to do that day. Peter and Lauren were out sampling and Harold had been in and out of meetings all day. I had already gotten a lot of my extra work done in the morning that I had all month to do, and there wasn’t even that much paperwork to enter in the afternoon.
I decided that instead of walking back to my building that I’d risk finding a spot to pee outside somwhere. That is, after all, what I would do if I were alone in this kind of spot anywhere else in the world with no one around. And although it was only about a 6 to 7 minute walk down here from the building I felt fairly secure in my ability to pull it off. There was tall grass growing in the meadow behind me and loud insects chirping about giving me an extra sense of security. I went off the path and beside a big bristly bush I peed.
I walked back to my spot on the rocks unnoticed, my heart beating a little faster. I took my shoes off again and walked down to the water and stuck my feet in and continued to enjoy myself. I felt immensely proud of the good day I had created for myself. It didn’t even feel like I was at work. I could have easily spent the day obsessing over Lauren and her planning demise on my reputation. I could have thought of ways to try to control it, slow it down. I could have thought of ways to try to get people to see me how I saw me, but it was all worthless. No one can really do that, I finally just surrendered to what was.
I spent the day the best way I knew how, by being completely free down by the ocean. Who cares if I didn’t have any friends? I was finally friends with myself.