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Can I Get a Window Seat?

Updated: Jun 17

As I'm rushing out to the bus station to start my day. I pop on my earbuds and press play on my favorite playlist. Erykah Badu's "Window Seat" plays, and when I hear her melodic voice sings, "I need someone to clap for me," raindrop tears descend my face. The more the song progresses, the slower my brisk walk becomes.


I cannot contain myself and think, "I can't get on this bus in this state." "What would people think?"

"Would they even let my puffy face on the bus without looking at me crazy? "


With these thoughts, I let the approaching bus pass me by, and I sit at the bus stop replaying Erykah's song allowing the tears to flow.

 At that moment, I realized my spirit resonated with the feeling of invisibility. It seems like I work so hard at my job without recognition; I tend to the kids and spouse out of expectation; I run here and there for my parents out of obligation, and I involve myself in my friends' endeavors because I am their person. At that moment, I wondered who my person was and who was checking for me. With all the constant pouring, I am left empty, and at this moment, I am choosing to show up for myself.


Immeasurable minutes pass as I sit at that bus stop replaying Erykah's song, feeling how I needed to feel. The more I listen to her singing, the more I realize this is where I need to be. I texted my boss and told her I was taking a sick day. I told my husband that he would need to pick the kids up today. I texted my parents that I would be unavailable for the day. As my phone rings for answers, I send everyone to voicemail.


At that moment, I needed to be missed and give myself a round of applause. I needed to sit here and watch the trees' hues of red and oranges. I needed to feel the chilly breeze blowing across my face. I needed to view the side billboards on each bus that pass by. The more I sat at that stop, the longer I felt to be there. Eventually, some strangers asked if I was ok, and I just nodded.


After a while, I did not care how crazy I looked; I was healing. I was recharging. After the fourth bus approached, I decided to get on for a destination-less ride. Luckily there was a window seat in the middle of the bus. Sitting on the velvet seat, I pressed my face against the window and stared at the neighborhood in fast motion.


I started to ponder the last time I did something for myself. I started thinking about my pre-responsible years, the hobbies I enjoyed, and how free I felt. I started thinking about all I had overcome and began to name my blessings. God has been good to me to have parents in the land of the living, children on my hip, and a man who loves me. Although they were all a burden an hour ago, they were now my light.


As the bus approached the end of the route, I realized I never recognized that small coffee shop on the corner. So, when the bus stops, I walk into the coffee shop, order a hot chocolate, and sit by the window again. While sipping my drink, a tall, beautiful black sister in a black power pantsuit approaches the table. She asked if she could sit at my table since no more seats were left. Distracted by the bounciness of her curls and the flawlessness of her energy, she repeated the request, and I vertically nodded.


She said she would not be there long, but we must have talked for an hour or so about home life, work life, and how to balance it all. I shared with her my temporary exit from my responsibilities, and she resonated. Although she was flawless on the outside, she was just as depleted as I was this morning. She began explaining the stresses of making partners at the firm she works for, finding love in the city, and balancing them both when they come to fruition. The more she spoke, the more tears fell down her face. My eyes mirrored hers, and we hugged like long-time friends. We both started manifesting positivity in each other's life. Her alarm suddenly went off, and she had to leave. We exchanged numbers and parted ways.


Shortly after, I got on the bus to return home. I placed my earbuds back on my ears and decided, like Erykah, that I no longer wanted to time travel and was ready to be back in the present. My cup was full. Usually, when the bus drew close to my house, I felt a sense of heaviness, but that was not the case this time. As I exited the bus and walked toward my house, I felt gratitude for this day and for allowing me space to reset, recharge, and clap for myself.

Don't Be Shy? Can you resonate with this feeling? Share your story in the comments.

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