Down in the basement of love.

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Ten years ago, when my husband and I were living in Portland, Oregon, we spent the weekend in McMinnvillle, a small town in the heart of the wine country. We stayed in the historic Hotel Oregon, and it had a bar down in the basement, appropriately named Cellar Bar.

The bartender slid us two beers on tap, my husband took his glass, leaned back in his chair, and said, "This is awesome." He looked the way I desperately wanted to feel: happy, content in the present moment, free. His vibe gave off invitations for me to join him in his bliss. He wanted to share this moment, this getaway, with me. 

But all I could think was there's nobody here. It was winter. The streets were quiet. The bar was, literally, empty. Except for us. And wasn't that enough?

Loneliness and emptiness creeped up and in and they smothered me. I couldn't breathe. Words caught in my throat, and if I spoke, I knew the dam of tears and emotion I had been holding in since we moved across the country would certainly break. 

And it did.

Down in the cellar, I was confronted by a wave of uncomfortable, painful feelings I had been avoiding my entire life. It thrusted me to the place I'd eventually land, rock bottom, because it was time. Time to get on with it, face it, and heal.

I recalled that story recently, when I was telling my husband the comment section of this blog is like going down to the basement. A place where we can travel underground, be real and talk. And whether a particular post draws many people or a few, the door is always open. There's always a seat at the bar, whether you prefer a cold beer, a diet Coke or water. It's a place where you can come as you are.