door city

2022-10-24  egg

When the white, former aspiring rapper from the Bedstuy house texted me that, unfortunately, they would not be selecting me as their next roommate, Ashwin and I were on the bus to Dumbo after a "fancy, not bottomless but would have one mimosa" brunch at an Italian restaurant next to the Park Slope Food Co-op. I was on the hunt for a new card case, as the piped leather seam of my current cardholder had begun to resemble a hangnail. As soon as the text preview showed up at the top of my phone screen, I knew--my jaw dropped, and Ashwin looked on as I sent around the screenshot of the current aspiring coder's infuriatingly cheerful text, my accompanying caption growing progressively distressed, from "are u fucking kidding me" to "i'm gonna throw up." Although I had been prepared for this, having taken the lack of notification on Saturday as a bad omen, I still felt the French toast from our breakfast swimming halfheartedly in my stomach and wished I hadn't eaten. Ashwin patted me comfortingly. "You know, every time I hit a new low, it makes everything else seem better than I previously thought." / "We can TP their house." / "It's good to face the worst rejections early on in life so that you handle them better later on." I gratefully accepted my friends' indulgent, crisis management-oriented responses, so loving and encouraging, as if I had just been dumped. When we got to the store, Ashwin determinedly took charge of the endeavor, now retail therapy, commenting on the clothes I tried on, asking the cashier whether they had more wallets in stock, urging me to bite the bullet on a forest green, wool jacket. Several days ago I really believed that I would sink into a three-day depressive period if I were denied entry to the Bedstuy home. I've been feeling significantly better since I started seeing my therapist, minimal anxiety and stronger repression tactics when I feel the despair coming on ("reframing," she calls it), making any moments of lower mood feel more pleasant, the kind of angst that is fun to indulge in because you've half-successfully convinced yourself that it's fleeting. Yet on Friday morning I wondered whether maybe I'd just been unconsciously pinning all my newfound optimism on this move, something that would bring substantial change to my life in a fun and interesting way to ward off the helplessness of feeling stuck. Then I had lunch with Olive at a refurbished Jewish deli, Katie napped on my couch, and we got to spend the next 18 hours together; when we parted ways the next morning after waking up to the latest Time Crisis and getting off the 53rd and Lexington stop together, I felt so on top of the world, so grateful for the people in my life, so in tune with myself and my close friends, like I've really started adjusting to this new era, one that I am actively curious and want to be intentional about.