The power went out last night.
I’m used to it. I grew up in places where electric outages were common. We’d just get on with our homework or reading or tending rescued kittens’ eyes or arranging little army men or what-have-you.
If it was after dark, a parent would call out calmly, “Everyone ok?” and we’d bring our projects to the living room, saving candles by having one well-illuminated space instead of five poorly-lit ones. It was cozy. Quieter than usual. Arguments rarely started when the electricity was out. It was too pleasant to spoil.
My housemates have different experiences entirely.
I live with two adults with wicked ADD. They NEED the TV. The tech-savvy one NEEDS internet. Sleep is out of reach if they can’t numb out their brains first.
I was soaking up the peace, purring inwardly with the candle glow and the outstanding peace.
No hums, no clicks, no TV, no wifi, no human-made radiation bouncing off my spinal cord and twizzling my brain with little egg-whisks.
I loved it.
Meanwhile, my two darling family members were going quietly insane.
They tried going to sleep to take refuge in unconsciousness until their lives became bearable again.
I could hear the ends of their nerves curling and uncurling, even through the closed doors.
They’d bounce up again in ten or fifteen minutes, one upstairs and one downstairs, and I’d hear them dashing quietly around in their unnaturally quiet spaces.
I sat in the squishiest chair in the living room, curled up like a clean kitten, soaking up the peace.
I’m usually more empathetic. If I could have thought of something to help, I’d have been glad to do it. Perhaps we’ll think of something next time.
At the heartless core of my practical brain, though, I found the thought that they get the evenings that make them comfortable almost all the time — only two evenings out of the past five months haven’t been fully electrified.
I only had one evening so far this winter that was great for me. I was going to make the most of it.
I stretched out in my super comfy spot and purred.