This particular Sunday feels lathargic. I hit snooze on my alarm more than usual, I didn’t want to blog, I didn’t want to eat breakfast. Even sitting on the couch watching Pam play Zelda was broken up by spacing out, losing minutes to some void of attention. 

“Get your sunshine in today.” Ordered Pam and our good friend Liz. “Take selfie with you and Kato outside and send them to us.”

Kato hadn’t gotten his turn outside yet while River has been out twice, so this seemed like good motivation to head out. I grab our outside blanket, a pad of paper and pen, throw Kato on the harness and lead, and made my way out to the courtyard across the street. 

At our old place, Kato loved going outside. He would chase leaves and make friends with our neighbors, wasting hours in the sun. Today, though, he stayed glued to my side and cried until I relented and brought him back inside.

It’s one more thing that’s changed in our move from Okemos that leaves me feeling as if we’ve had something stolen from us. We don’t greet our neighbors like we used to. We don’t chat with fellow pet owners and we don’t know the names of our management. 

I hate it. 

We moved under terrible circumstances, having been the victims of escalating hate crime that made us feel as though we were fleeing our home. Our apartment in Okemos was bright and cheerful, with plenty of sunlight and fresh air coming through our windows. Our apartment faced east, so the morning sun always spilled into our living room for the cats to soak up. Our white walls were broken up with a cool blue and touches of peach from our couch pillows. We knew our neighbors, became particularly close with our upstairs neighbor, Lauren. 

I met our first neighbor last week, four months after moving to the new apartment. The floor plan of this apartment feels more spacious and the floors and appliances are all more upscale, but it’s dark and cold. We tried to bring warmth with a creamy blush and wine colored walls, but it only truly feels warm when the sun sets and we turn our lighting fixtures on. The ease of stepping outside and grilling on the patio has been taken away, replaced with walking through our dark, dull, basement hallways and up a flight of stairs to reach the outside that doesn’t ever seem to reach us. 

I keep waiting to fall in love with this new home. I’ve always struggled with change and know that change brought on so suddenly and by something so terrible was bound to leave me feeling a little unhappy. It’s only now, as the days begin to stretch longer and the breeze becomes warmer, that I’m beginning to fear that I’ll never have that fall in love moment. 

In the meantime, the sunshine is beckoning. 


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