I sit in the bathroom of the motorhome with the door closed. My butt is planted on the Rubbermaid bin that rests on top of the cooler inside of the tiny shower that is more like a closet. I look out the back window of my tiny little room towards the “south hills,” as Darwin calls them.
I feel safe here. Comfortable. Cozy. My own little spot. A cocoon. Tucked away to look out at the hills and sky, to think and feel. No one knows that I am here. No one can see me. I am alone yet connected to something greater.
I remember the first time I had this same sensation as a girl. Admittedly, I am unsure if this happened just once or multiple times. I feel it was more the latter, though it’s possible my own memory has turned one single event into a string of remembered events over the course of many years.
At any rate, in the memory I am in the house where I grew up. Bothell, Washington. We had moved to that house the summer I turned seven. I am older than seven and sitting in my closet on my knees, tucked back into the corner. I am huddled over the floor, my face close to the bright teal carpet and maybe my chin is even tucked out and resting on it. I’m melancholy. My fingers are picking up small, teeny toys like plastic Barbie shoes and and little papers and plastic coins and real pennies (there were always pennies) and other small objects from the closet floor. My own little things.
The way I remember it, I am being forced to clean my room and I think it’s by my dad and I want to say it’s a weekend and my mom is at work.
However the details may be in my head, I am clear on one thing. It’s the first time I ever had the realization that no one could ever know what was going on in my head. That I could think and feel and no one would ever know what I was thinking and feeling unless I told them. It was a liberation. An awareness. A consciousness. I felt powerful in my little cocoon. I could choose my thoughts and dream and imagine. In that closet, I experienced a new freedom.
I became connected to something else. Something inside. Within. There in my shell. My cocoon. Inside the closet. In the corner. Alone.
I feel the same thing now. Sitting in the small enclosure that is the closet of this motorhome. Door closed, window facing out at the south hills.
I am thankful for this time and space.