For the past four weeks, I have been sitting on the couch. Of course, I have had to leave my comfortable spot to go to classes, meetings and work. Aside from those few mandatory forays into the real world, I have quite literally and figuratively been on the couch.
Each morning I would awake comfortably ensconced beneath a makeshift blanket of an afghan throw and piles of paper and surrounded by my laptop and takeout containers with half-eaten food. I would grudgingly take a shower, throw on the closest and possibly cleanest jeans and t-shirt, and make my way out of the door. I would sleepwalk through my necessary classes and team meetings, looking forward to the end of the day when I could return home, throw on a t-shirt and boxer shorts and gratefully sink onto my favorite cushion.
Like a child, I made a fortress out of the couch pillows to protect myself from real life. I immersed myself in sitcom reruns and court television. Although I spent hours on the phone with my friends who lived in other cities, I ignored the calls of local classmates inviting me out to dinner or drinks. Eventually, the phone calls slowed. I told myself that I was happy because interacting with folks took too much energy. Besides, the couch never required me to search through my closet for clothes to fit my ever-expanding hips, never expected me to laugh at marginally funny jokes and could care less if I wasn’t the life of the party.
The funny thing about a couch though is that no matter how fluffy your cushions are, and regardless of how nicely your butt has worn a comfortable grove right in front of the tv, the couch eventually becomes uncomfortable. When I began to become aggravated at the piles of clothes, paper and food surrounding the couch, and feeling tension in my neck and back after a fitful night of sleeping, I realized that I was literally sinking.
So I’ve decided to get up off the couch. I cleaned up my living room, washed dishes and made a grocery list. I hung up my clothes and made my bed. For the first time in four weeks I slept in my bed and woke up refreshed and ready for the day. I feel better than I have in weeks and it’s all because I decided to actively participate in my life. I guess we all have our “couch moments” and I’m glad that mine has passed.