I have this crate. It’s sitting by the door of my apartment. Sometimes it’s in the closet, but I thought it would be leaving this weekend, so I took it out.
In this crate are the remnants of a year and a half. Sadly, it’s not much. There are a few shirts, some deodorant, a toothbrush and a couple decorative Coors trays. And the crate sits there by the door. Staring at me. Reminding me.
That crate is a daily reminder that sometimes, love is not enough. The crate is a reminder that it takes two people to work at a relationship. No matter how strong the love is, if other key factors like trust, compromise and a certain level of vulnerability don’t exist, there’s no hope for anything solid. No matter how hard you fight to have something stable.
But since it looks like the crate is going to be here for a while, waiting for its owner to come pick it up, I think I need to make this crate represent some better things.
This crate needs to represent the time when I finally stood up for myself. When I finally said, you know, I’ve been there for you, but you’ve never been there for me. It represents me finally saying I deserve to be trusted. I deserve to be loved unconditionally. I deserve stability.
The crate should represent the first time in my life when I finally said, no. When I finally decided to choose myself over others. When I got tired of being the martyr for a cause.
At some point the crate will be gone. How I’ll feel about that, I don’t know. But what I do hope is that I don’t need the crate to remind me that I deserve good things. And the first good thing I deserve is respite. A little peace and time to rekindle old friendships and let new ones flourish.
Because I deserve to be happy just being alone for a while.