I was driving downtown tonight, heading to the Loft to hear some friends read from their unfinished manuscripts just as I had this time last year. I was singing along to JayZ and admiring the skyline and then noticed a rundown brownstone on the corner. I remembered being in that building right before I left my job. I could see the elderly man with dementia and remember his stained khaki pants and his brown cardigan. I wanted to set up home health care for him but he didn't want it. He assured me he was fine. I tried to focus on his face while the roaches climbed up the wall behind him. I knew he wasn't fine.
I walked out of there knowing that I was barely holding on even though I had only one more week of work left.
Then, tonight, I was driving to a reading, driving right by the past to a different life - one that didn't seem possible for so very long. I couldn't dwell on the brownstone and the lives still there. I had to look forward and when I arrived at the Loft, I was overwhelmed with gratitude - thankful that I could walk away all those months ago, thankful I'm still walking.