the eighth day

comic drawing of a fox, eyes closed, while wind blows leaves past, with the text 'it fucken wimdy'


TOPICAL: this is part of The Cycle of the Seasons series

I started up my Welsh lessons again on Duolingo! I’m going back through the early lessons because they updated the course and there are words and tenses I wasn’t familiar with yet, so instead of googling the answers, I want to know what they’re talking about (literally). I can absolutely say that dwi ddim yn hoffi pys, because the only peas I’ve ever actually liked were right out of the garden and my taste-memory wants nothing to do with ‘peas’ from the grocery store. Maybe if I grew my own? Anyway.

As I was looking for something on Facebook (ew), I stopped by my sister’s profile, like I do every few months. There were some photos of a Christmas gift exchange, and I don’t think I have ever seen a more awkward and sad looking gift exchange. Where is the dark-outside-light-inside feeling? Where is the mood lighting? Why are you all on chairs when you could be on the floor? Why do you look so sad?? SHOW ME ON THE TREE WHERE CHRISTMAS HURT YOU. (My oldest nephew did not look sad in the slightest, I think he’s impervious)

Since I track the weather and lunar cycles, eclipses, retrogrades, Sabbats, and cross-quarter days, of course I knew that Mercury stationed direct retrograde (very funny, Mercury) in Capricorn today. Do I know what that means? Not really. I’ve read some commentary by astrologers whose opinions I generally trust, and the only thing I know for sure is that each one is different because a) they are in different signs each time [what even is a Capricorn? I’M NOT SURE], and b) we are different each time and so is the world. All I really know is that Mercury is in Gatorade again and we have to slow down, shut our mouths, and think before we speak or act or decide.

I opened all the packages that were stashed in the mudroom today and we ran them through a decontamination cycle and then I brought the things that are gifts (I got to do the buying of the House gifts to everyone this year) for 12th Night up to my room so that I can put them in bags stuffed with tissue.

… oh, did I not tell you about our decontamination procedures? Most of us are immune-compromised and even if we weren’t, we really fucking do not want COVID or anything else getting in the house. Anything coming into the house from outside goes through a decontamination cycle. Items are handled with gloves or bare hands that can be sanitized afterward. If your clothes touch the thing you’re unboxing, put it in the decon laundry hamper that lives in the mudroom. (prepare yourself ahead of time or you might end up very cold if you have to take off your shirt and pants, trust me on this one) Near the beginning of the pandemic, we bought medical-grade UV lights and have them set up in our mudroom — it’s kind of an airlock room between an outside door and an inside door — for radiating the heck out of stuff. This UV light is too dangerous for contact with people, and a few of us have at one point opened the door and discovered too late that one of the lights hadn’t turned off properly, immediately left the room with our eyes shut, asked for an antihistamine and allergy eye drops, and kept our eyes shut for at least fifteen minutes. We’ve got light-blocking curtains on the windows and UV-blocking plastic lining the inside and outside of the glass on the door. We have a process for letting everyone know the downstairs is closed for decon, and we even decon food that we order out.

ANYWAY, the gifts are now upstairs. I still haven’t read my book, but I did get to give our toddler a back rub and I had a delicious meatball sub for dinner and I have doughnuts left and I am having a cold Guinness and my current favorite playlist is bouncing around the inside of my skull (earbuds are so nice sometimes). So really, things are pretty damn good here.

May you find as much intense enjoyment as a toddler pausing for maximum backrub feelings.

— Nix

P.S. Would you believe me if I told you that our decon procedure was part of what led to a breakup I had early in the pandemic? Apparently you can take something so personally that it ruins a brand-new relationship. I mean, it happens, I guess. I’m kind of on hiatus right now.

P.P.S. Which reminds me, the person who broke up with me is a Capricorn. I don’t know if that has anything to do with anything.

Our days traditionally begin at sunset. The darkness is all around us but we are safe here together inside these walls that we have fortified with love and with sacrifice.

featured image is a comic that appears to have originated here on Tumblr in 2021

Nix Kelley
Co-parent to multiple kids. Writer. Death doula. Member of the Order of the Good Death. Seeker on the Path of Light. Queer, non-binary, & trans.


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