Twenty-Three Years Old
In Grand Rapids, MN I sat at a mint green barstool at the high kitchen table. I had recently moved in with my boyfriend. I read How to Be a Good Creature by Sy Montgomery while my pumpkin coffee cooled down near my right hand. I wore leggings and a large sweater that had so much dog and cat hair on it a lint roller wouldn’t help.
My boyfriend walked up to me from off the couch and placed his large hands on my shoulders. I relaxed up, into him. He stood there while I flipped the pages and his hands squeezed and rubbed.
My shoulders felt beautiful in his large hands.
At work on Monday through Fridays I swiveled on a chair in an office desk and ran reports, submitted accounts payable, and made phone calls. I answered customer’s phone calls swiftly and efficiently. I kept the desk organized and prioritized the workload of the propane company.
I took lunch around noon, if it wasn’t too busy, and ran from the break room into my office if a phone called needed to be answered and my coworker wasn’t there.
It was a long time before I realized the mantra in my head that kept repeating shoulders back at random times during the day had gone away.
On occasion, I had become a woman with good posture and broad shoulders.