Today was one of those god-awful days when I felt like my self-esteem was in the sewer.
by Jane D.
The betta fish is sick again; the fin rot has returned. At night, it thrashes against the pebbles, perhaps looking to bury itself. The red pineapple-styled plant that was purchased over the summer is officially dead. A few days ago, I found a baby roach crawling on it, and I finally snipped off the stump that was once a flower. I was going to throw it in the garbage, but, out of guilt, I brought it back to the flower store on the way to work. When the Asian florist looked at the plant, he looked like he was going to burst into laughter.
"Do you think it can be saved?" I asked. "Do you think it will grow back?" He was going to lie through his teeth, I could tell.
"Yes, but not the same as before," he said.
"So throw it away?" I asked.
He sort of nodded. No one wants to admit that there's no more hope, but he grabbed the plant, separated it from the pot and discarded it. The end of the plant.
I kept thinking that life would be wonderful if relationships were as simple as plants: You enjoy them as they grow, and when they blossom, but can easily say farewell when they die.
The plant provided some color in my life, and offers a nice memory. I can't say the same for people—especially men, especially the anti-boyfriend. I have this sense that, at the end of the day, we're going to grow apart the way that seasons fade into each other, or simply be friends. He's everything I'd ever want in a man… except physically and emotionally unavailable—but isn't that what a relationship is? Christ. He also did a 360 on me, meaning sending flowers and showering me with gifts and then becoming lukewarm. He's the male version of the plant that I buried today.
Anyways, today was one of those god-awful days when I felt like my self-esteem was in the sewer. I had lunch with the new girl who replaced my work nemesis. She seems smart, nice, and pleasant enough, and so far the sixth sense radar hasn't gone off. I like her laugh; it sounds like a lilt, and she's fashionable too. It makes me feel good that she's five years older than me, Asian, and is single too. I feel good any time anyone is single. Go singles!
I went to the writing powwow tonight and felt completely self-conscious and unable to contribute anything. There were a few new students in the class, including a reed-thin nerdy-looking woman who introduced herself with the tidbit that FYI she found out she was pregnant today. Well, good for her. I'm beginning to think that it simply wasn't meant to be that I have a boyfriend or be with anyone. At the end of the day, even the betta fish and that exotic plant are short-lasting and disposal, kind of like the trail of men in the dust.