Please Just Leave the Love Off the Table

Have you ever driven around the square in a small Texas town at 10 o’clock at night? It’s so quiet and desolate. I stopped and rolled the window down. There was no sound except the clean hum of the overnight lights. I sat there for a minute and wondered what a difference six hours can make. During the daylight, this place is hopping with cars and people. I would be lucky to find a parking space. I looked back at my son sleeping in his car seat. Will he sit in this same place in 17 years and think these same thoughts? Will he look around this small town and think of all the things the world has out there to offer him? Will he dream of getting out of here and making a life for himself in a far away place? Just then, he makes a small squeak in his sleep and turns his head away from the shine of the street light. I smile a little and point the car toward the house.
Three years ago when I moved here, I gave up soda, or as it’s known where I come from, pop. Last year, when I found out we were pregnant, I gave up alcohol and caffeine. At the beginning of this last week, I gave up bread. If you would have asked me three years ago if I could have given up any of those things, I would have said no. I have thought about this a good deal lately. I believe you can train your body to go without anything, within reason. Love is not one of those things. You can’t sit down for a meal and tell the waiter, “please just leave the love off the table, I don’t want to be tempted.”
I tried painting some sample colors on my walls this week. I catch myself looking at the small spots I have painted every time I pass by the walls. Who am I? Am I the person who has a “barn-red” dining room? Do you look at me in the grocery store and think, “I bet that woman has a turquoise wall in her house”? For some reason, these thoughts make me uncomfortable. I’m not in love with either color I have painted on my walls. I sent the pictures to a few people. My mother said the red was bright for me. I think that implies that I wouldn’t normally chose such a color. My husband liked the red, but he said the turquoise was “very blue.” I think that means he wasn’t feeling it. I haven’t gone back and bought the rest of the paint yet. I have been walking around all week, telling myself that I am not sold on either color. What if I buy 12 more sample colors and paint a small piece on the same walls? Will I ever feel like I am the person who has (insert color name) walls?
What does the color of my walls even matter? Yes, I am the one who has to look at them every day, but can’t I just train my brain to become accustomed to the new colors like I trained my brain that soda is bad?




One thought on “Please Just Leave the Love Off the Table

  1. Two favorite colors! I don’t do soda, caffeine or bread…unless it is gluten free. The few times I do caffeine I skyrocket into space with a huge smile! But then I can’t come down when I want. No more alcohol for me. Not that I ever did it much. Now it’s at Christmas in my nog 🙂

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