This post is a submission from my 30 day creative writing challenge. Click here to learn more about the challenge or here to explore the other posts in this series.

I bring a handkerchief with me on Tuesdays so that I don’t use all of my therapists Kleenexes. I also wear or bring my glasses so that I can try and hide my swollen eyes. Oh, and makeup, I bring under eye concealer, eyeliner, and tinted moisturizer, since all that stuff, despite my best efforts to “clean cry,” cries off.

After my session I pull my shit together and for the rest of the afternoon at work I pretend like I just didn’t dig inside myself for an hour to talk about traumatic memories from my past.

Today I reached for my glasses case and when I opened it, it was empty. Fuck. My glasses were at home, on the kitchen table, where I took them off to write my column last night. I looked in the rear view mirror and winced. They are all going to know.

I put my sunglasses on, drove back to work and went to the ladies room. Sunglasses still on. Thank God no one was in there. I fixed my face with my makeup as best I could and took several more deep breaths. I drank water and powered through the afternoon like always.

After work and errands I walked up the six flights of stairs to my apartment and started to cry again. Relief. This is what changing behavior and being mindful feels like. This is the healing process. This is the work.

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