Sometimes, late at night, after my husband is asleep, I creep out of my room with a novel and make myself a huge cup of tea. I make it on the stove instead of in the microwave so I don’t wake him up, and because it calms me to do it that way. At this time, when I know I am alone and no one is awake, I like to wear pajamas or a bathrobe since nudity seems to be the freeing uniform of marriage. But for half an hour once in a while, I like to remember when I was captive in my clothes. I buttera piece of bread and eat it in tiny bites because now I’m not eating to nourish myself. Drinking a cup of tea involves more waiting than drinking because you have to wait for the water to boil, then you have to wait for the tea to steep, then you have to wait for it to cool. While I am waiting, I bury myself in a good book. What is happening in the book doesn’t matter as long as it’s well written. I’m not reading to find out what happens next, I’m only letting the rhythym of the language soothe me. Then the tea is finally ready to drink and it’s warmth and subtly comfort me as I read. Drinking a large cup of tea frees me from time, from the endless watching of the clock because my time is up when my tea is gone. I’m not sorry to finish it and creep back into the dark bedroom. Now I am content, satisfied to be slipping between warm sheets and laying a hand on my husband’s back as he breathes deeply in sleep. I can easily fall asleep, glad to be surrounded by love and safety because my need to be seperate and independant has been fed and put to bed.