He always feels it in his fingers first.
The condensation from his beer slowly seeped into the fabric of his arm rest. It was another humid day. Like every other day these past two months his body rinses off in the shower and drinks a beer. He should be hungry. He hasn’t eaten since his bites of toast from this morning.
That should have been his first clue.
Instead, he sits on his sofa and stares at the bulky laptop set on his coffee table. The dust on the keyboard and the screen should have vexed him, but he couldn’t bring himself to care. That’s the way it’s been these days, an unending cycle of movements and actions.
Every once in a while he brings the beer to his lips and takes a drink. There’s a rhythm to drinking and he’s learned to keep it. That’s what life has become these past few months—routine. He doesn’t dislike routine, if anything he used to enjoy it. The routine wasn’t the problem.
It was him.
He can’t identify exactly when it started. It was a languid transition. All he knows, was that he began to not feel like himself. Then, he couldn’t control himself physically anymore. There was a drawn out divorce between his body and his spirit—for lack of a better word. Like a divorced couple, the partners left each other and created their own lives apart but the ghost of their relationship remained. His ghost however, had begun to fade.
He’s always had the same routine. He woke up, drank water, washed up, and ate his toast while he packed his bag for work. That’s the way it’s always been. He was fine with it. It was relaxing and efficient. What he can’t stand, is that he watches his body perform his routine now. It wasn’t him anymore. His body woke up, his body drank water, his body washed, and his body ate toast. It wasn’t him.
It started with him watching his body take over his morning routine.
Then, his body did it all.
His body was sticky from the humidity, not him. His body rinsed off in the shower, not him. His body is drinking the beer, not him. His body performs his rhythm.
He feels it in his fingers again.
It’s a new development.
When he watched his body, he still got to go along for the ride. He could feel the roughness of the toast scrap the roof of his body’s mouth, he could feel his body scrub with soap, he could feel the condensation from his beer on his body’s fingers
Now he can’t.