I used a public bathroom tonight. I know that sounds like the most uninteresting fact I could share. And yet I did. I haven’t used this public bathroom in years. I would say the last time I used this bathroom was easily 6 or 7 years ago. It seems so long ago.
As I walked the wet streets downtown I thought about the last time I was here. Middle of a bustling city, thinking of everything and nothing all at the same time. I remember using the forum bathroom countless times. Always so afraid of what I would be facing me as I interned the bathroom. I have used so many techniques to survive this endeavour. Take off my jacket, lose the hat, use the bathroom when no one is looking, yep I have done them all. I have even used the men’s room in hopes of saving embarrassment or violence. I’ve learned how to survive these situations.
And now I am here. 6 or 7 years later. Leaving a work event. I’ve changed. So many things have happened in the time since I graced these halls and yet I feel exactly like I did all those years ago.
How could I let myself fall into the same problem? Here I am without all my armour. I am normally far better at protecting myself in situation like this. I am normally smart enough to think ahead and yet here I am, cold, damp and lost. Amazing how much life can change and stay the same. I have perfected the art of shielding myself and yet I realize I forgot to pack the essentials.
I’m strong. I’m tough. I can divide myself into parts where each section feels what I let it feel. But tonight, tonight after some wine and not nearly enough food I don’t know how to control each meticulously separated part of me. The injured, scared part of me that I have long hidden from most people has peeked his head out and I am struggling to send it back to where it has been all these years.
I truly hate this vulnerability right now. Nothing happened. Nothing at all. But it made me sick to my stomach waiting for something bad to happen. It didn’t. Thankfully. I wasn’t ready or even a little prepared for it tonight.
There is nothing more terrifying then the idea that you could be destroyed in the simplest of moments....