Shades of gray

It’s funny, how an innocent comment creates a tailspin of memory.

Person 1:  “The heat on this floor is so poorly regulated.  You close the door to the room that you’re sleeping in and you wake up freezing cold in the middle of the night.  Meanwhile, our room is a sauna.”

Person 2: “The room wasn’t bad at all.  We slept so well, I don’t think we ever noticed the cold.  I didn’t anyway.  Plus I can’t have any open doors in my room, not even a crack.  Either the light keeps me awake or I can’t stop staring at an open door, closet door, bathroom door, whatever.  I’m sorry.”

Person 1: “It’s no big deal.  My husband prefers to have the heat up anyway.  He’d be just fine having a sauna for a room.”

Person 3:  “What.   You have a traumatic experience or something?  Can’t have any open doors?”

Person 3 rocked my world for a moment.  Guess that means I’m Person 2.

My heart skipped a beat and I thought, “Why can’t I have any doors open?”  It took approximately two more heartbeats to remember exactly why.  It’s amazing how you can forget something so fundamentally you.  How your adult eccentricities have a beginning somewhere.

A cracked door means shades of gray.  Give me solid.  A solid black room.  A solid gray one.  A regular, repeating digital colon blinking seconds away.  Embrace the monotony.  But unexpected deviations of light mean the room is changing.  Being altered.  Solid turns to shades of gray.  No lights on but the darkness changes.  Shades of gray…something moves.


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