I was in between jobs so there was that whole what-am-i-doing-with-my-life job insecurity issues and the reality of being back in Plano. Then my boyfriend left for the military and we had absolutely no communication for about a month. And one fine morning in February, I slipped on ice on interstate 35, spun out of control and crashed into the construction barriers multiple times while an NPR reporter's voice blended into a wild mixture of indecipherable sounds of cars screeching and things crashing into other things. I felt my body swinging against the seatbelt in slow motion -- the seatbelt that probably single-handedly saved my life. When it all stopped, I was nauseated - and oh, all the delayed a shock that paralyzed my body as the car finally came to a full stop. How am I going to pay for this? Was the first question that popped in my head. Crying and shaking were all to come later. Everything was so cold and hectic. A truck driver got out of his car and immediately ran over to see if I were okay. I told him I was fine. He stopped the entire incoming traffic and motioned me to pull over. I pulled over and he left. I tried to get out of the car but the door was jammed.
Oh, it was dark. Trust me.
It obviously took me awhile to recuperate from everything. When I finally came home, I resolved to do absolutely nothing for at least 3 weeks. Such dark days. I basically became a serial homebody and refused to go out or do anything for awhile. But the truth is, there are so many what-if's and why-me's you can ask yourself til it becomes torturous. Yeah, I initially kept asking myself if I should've just stayed in DC to look for a job, if I shouldn't have decided to drive back to Dallas from Austin that morning, etc. But the afterthought is never going to change anything. The truth is that you make decisions and you own up to them because they were yours after all. And it's your life.
What I'm trying to say is that things got dark so I did something totally despicable: I baked cookies. If you know me at all, I am literally the worst person in the kitchen. Like I basically microwave all my meals and I feel like I'm sometimes bad at even that.
The cookies actually turned out pretty well. My dad baked his signature scones. And slowly, somewhere between carefully studying the recipe for the chocolate chip cookies and listening for the oven timer, I started feeling okay about everything. Home. Baked goods. Time. They're always good for the soul.