The other night I had a dream that two of my older friends (as in, older in age…but also older in that I’ve known them for a long time) came over. Instead of feeling excited to see my old friends, I had an enormous mental breakdown. Apparently, I can’t escape my anxiety even in my dreams but whatever, that’s not (really) the point.
The next morning I told my mom about the dream, as we often share our weird or extra silly dreams with each other. I said, “Mom, I had a dream that [friends] came over and I burst out crying and ran away.”
My mom kind of smiled and said, “Was it because you felt jealous they both have kids?”
I then laughed and said, “No, it’s because I was jealous that they both have houses.”
But today I am not laughing about that. Today is a hard day. It’s a hard day because I worked the morning from “my” basement “office” with no windows. An office without my desk and without my books and without my calendar or posters or the beautiful painting my cousin gave me last year.
It’s a hard day because I miss having a kitchen and I miss being able to shower in my own bathroom and I miss having total privacy with my husband and I miss not caring about how much mud hits the floor when I take my dog inside from a walk…because it’s my floor and not my parent’s floor and I don’t care about a bit of mud in my house.
But it’s not my house. So I take up as little room as possible in the office with no windows and clean the floors every single time my dog comes inside from a walk or bathroom break. And I carry my towels to and from the bedroom that used to be familiar but now feels more like a hotel room.
I know this sounds like privileged whining, and that’s because I guess it is. I know you’re not supposed to compare your life to others. I know I “have it better” than many others.
And most days I am extremely grateful and even happy that my parents have given up so much for my husband and I to live here and save money so one day we may be able to have our own cozy home. But today in this house I grew up in, I feel like a visitor, a guest, a friend passing through.
My anxiety has been relatively under control lately but I still have those days where I can’t fight it off, and I can’t fight off the depression, and all I can do is sit in “my” room and cry.