It is October of 2008. My lover has left me, I have started graduate school, and my mother has cancer.
My entire world has been turned upside down in a matter of months. Three years prior, I had moved from Chicago to Pittsburgh to be with my lover, and though the relationship had the usual ups and downs of partnership, I had thought it was solid, and stable, and a forever thing – at that time, I still believed in forever things.
In April 2008 he told me that he wasn’t sure if he wanted to remain in the relationship, and we officially ended the relationship in July. In August I took our tiny Yorkshire Terrier puppy and rented a small apartment near the universities – I had been accepted into a graduate program and didn’t want to run away home to Chicago, beaten and licking my wounds.