On Friday two weeks ago I was supposed to be on a plane to Australia, beginning my master’s degree and my new life 10,000 miles away. Instead, I was lying in an operating room in my hometown, having a necrotic bone removed from the ball of my right foot.
That said, the experience wasn't all about nature's bounty. Perhaps more importantly, it was about the pet owners who put on voices to express their dogs' supposed thoughts. It was about laughing at the tiny Shih Tzu attempting to mount my friend's Australian Shepherd, or the asshole beagle who made it his mission to pee in every single bowl of drinking water.
Cats tend to help me tell the story of a place in their always-masterful inhabitance of it. Plus, I just like snapping cat pics. And so, I give you, the cats of Bermuda -- the rascally little nuggets who roam the cobblestone roads as if they own them, boldly mewling for attention from tourists or skirting into bushes at the faintest sound.
No one act of kindness will bring us peace on earth, and no one boxful of office supplies will cure your friend's depression. But the gift my friend gave me was more than just a Get Well Soon card in blue wrapping paper. It was a reminder that life is to be appreciated for what it is — even the temporary phases of transition.
When my non-depressed self comes back into my life as if nothing has happened, it feels disingenuous. She tries to connect with me by asking me playful questions like, “So, how’s the love life?” It’s a universal icebreaker, a way for her to learn something juicy about my life. But the appropriate response doesn’t exist for a person whose romantic undertakings have been abysmal. The dating pool is bleak enough to depress a normal person and dating while depressed is another enterprise altogether.