I awaken from slumber, clearly seeing my friends from Manila in my dream. There is Abby driving me. We stop by a mall to buy cake. There was a frenzy, some excitement in the cake shop. Its logo is a shade darker than the Tiffany Blue. It is the in bakery now in Manila, for how long I don’t know. I buy my best friend Rissa a cupcake. But wait shouldn’t I buy food for everyone. We were on our way to her grandmother’s wake. “It’s not enough I tell myself,” even in my dream I criticize myself for being lousy gift giver.
I wake up at 4am, Benjamin had sent me a text message saying it was good while it lasted. He was ending an odd friendship, which began as a date. I worry now if he’s depressed. I didn’t reply to his message for it belonged in the too difficult pile of things to do. It was an inappropriate text he sent, mocking my upcoming colonoscopy. I didn’t know if he was trying to be naughty. I just didn’t get it. We are both speaking English. But perhaps, lost in cultural translation or maybe I failed to understand what his emojis meant.
A lot of things fall under the too difficult category. The colonoscopy, grocery shopping, even sleeping solid for 8 hour is a struggle. My head empty this morning from the 4am wake up time. No alarms. No intentions. No early morning commitments. I just woke up and was unable to go back to sleep. I numbed my mind to the most mindless of all Youtube videos- Married at First Sight UK.
Tonight, I was craving cake. But could not be bothered making an entire cake recipe. I recall reading about Mug Cakes. It is seemed like the perfect solution for a single person desperately seeking cake but not wanting to head to a nearby café or to bake an entire cake. Toss in a few ingredients into the mug, zap it in the microwave for 45 seconds it said. It required probably an extra minute or so until the batter appeared cooked. I ease the edges off the mug and turn it over a plate. I get a mountain of unappetizing cake crumbs. I crack two squares of Lindt 70% dark chocolate, zap in the microwave and drizzle if over the so called mug cake. I feast on it as I struggle to remain attentive to a two-hour zoom call. I survive. I call my mom. I celebrate life with my mom, as I do at everyday on Facetime. I go to sleep and hope for a good day tomorrow.
I no longer judge. Good days, bad days, who knows. And if my too difficult list gets too long, that’s okay. I’ve learned to ride my feelings, not fight them. Two days, later I felt much better. I scratched several things off my too difficult list. I even bought butter, anticipating to make cake- the real stuff, none of this mug cake business.
*An excerpt from my live living solo and enduring over 220 something days of lockdown alone in Melbourne. Australia.