"HOUSE!!!" she wailed as I tried to extricate her.
When I got home, I built her an identical fort out of a cardboard box, a living room chair and a big blanket thrown over it. It managed to stay intact for the most part, except for when she would grab the blanket and pull down on it until the cardboard roof caved in.
"HOUSE!!!" she wailed each time it fell.
"House!" she chirped each time I put it back up.
I remember trying to build a fort out of a blanket as a kid. I laid on my back and stuck my legs and arms straight up in the air to support the roof. I tried using a cardboard pole leftover from wrapping paper to act as a prop. I tried using throw pillows and stuffed animals as walls.
The trouble was, the blankets kept falling back down. Propped up for a moment, they'd soon return to brush my face and cover my body again. No matter how much effort and how many contraptions I'd build or finagle, the blanket fell down and covered me.
Today I was thinking about that blanket and how I could never keep it off of me. Sort of reminded me of depression. I've spent a lifetime propping it up and trying to keep it off. But every so often the cardboard scaffolding I've built gives way and I feel it brush my face and cover my body once more.
Sometimes I just want to lay down in the dark and give in to it.
But most times I brush it off and try to prop it up. I rummage around for the cardboard poles and stuffed bears in my head and build walls out of plush. Sometimes it all seems so pointless.
Building an imaginary fortress against pain.
But that inner kid in me doesn't care about logistics and logic. I hear my daughter's voice yell, "House!" and I put the structure back in again. She needs me to keep a roof over this house of mine. She needs the shelter of my joy.