It’s Crazy What A Good Shower Can Do

Pardon my french but it’s been a fucking week

Alex Rosado
5 min readJan 18, 2023
Photo by Priscilla Du Preez on Unsplash

I’ve had a week that lasted two years. I’m not sure how it’s possible, but it felt that way. For the first time in a long time, everything felt out of sync.

I’ve been meaning to write. I’ve been wanting to talk about navigating my new relationships at work; wanting to talk about dreams and the pressure we put on ourselves; wanting to talk about finding like-minded people… I’ve been wanting, but I haven’t been writing. Every word sounds wrong, and every subject foolish.

I’ve gotten into a new habit: every morning I walk to work while listening to a podcast. It’s a 35 minutes walk — 45 if I’m tired and the wind is fighting me. The podcast I’m listening to is French, though its title is English. In Power. A young woman interviews people of all ages and horizons about their lives, accomplishments, and defining moments. She aims to give listeners advice to talk control of their lives and be in power — not just empowered.

So, I’ve been thinking about power, and what it means to be in power of one’s life. We all crave control — of our bodies, lives, decisions. Yet, does being in control means having power? I’ve had the chance to be in control of most decisions in my adult life, but I haven’t often felt powerful.

I haven’t been feeling in control either lately. This week got me on my knees. I couldn’t get a good night’s sleep — it turned my brain upside down. We too often downplay our sleep needs, but it can make or break people. This week, it broke me.

That, and not being able to take a satisfying shower.

For some reason, I always go back to the movie Eat, Pray, Love when Julia Roberts is in Italy. As she visits her new apartment, she discovers the bathroom. If I remember correctly — it’s been a while since I’ve seen the movie — she needs to heat water to be able to clean herself. When she asks about it, she is answered that the essentials will be clean.

I’ve felt this way for the past weeks. The shower was wide open into a cold and old bathroom. The stream wasn’t powerful, I had to squeeze myself as tight as possible for maximum reach of the hot water.

I’ve felt myself diminishing. I was tired, anxious, tense, borderline paranoid by the end of the week. I was down and still being kicked.

I’m starting to consider the possibility that it will not work out. I might have to give up on my Irish dream.

So, I’ve been thinking about dreams.

I’ve waited almost 15 years to live in Dublin. I’m finally here, loving the town, enjoying my work, and turning my colleagues into friends. I fit here. This dream has been a long time coming. I realized for the first time that I had no plan B. If not Ireland, then where? What?

The silence was loud.

There are places I’d love to live. If I was rich, I would live in Manhattan or Boston. I’d have a nice beach house in Connecticut, or a loft in Portland, Maine. I’d be able to travel back to Paris easily, maybe have a place there. At this rate, might as well have an apartment in Dublin too.

There’s a long list of places I’d love to live if I could, but none I consider seriously. These are enjoyable when you have the money to enjoy them. It’s not fun to live in a big city and not be able to afford the food, the culture, the happy hour with your friends… I’d rather be happy in a place I don’t like than miserable in a place I love.

I can’t help but ask myself: am I miserable in a place I love?

I don’t have an answer to this one. Some days I am. Others, I’m not.

So, I’ve been thinking about this Irish dream of mine. Am I doing it because I want to, or because I have been talking about it for so long?

When you talk about something for so long, it becomes part of yourself. Everyone that knows me a little knows about Ireland. As much as it is my dream, I do feel the pressure to succeed. I don’t want the awkward conversations, the “what about Ireland?”, “have you changed your mind?”, “what happened?” and so on.

I’m scared of losing a part of myself if I renounce.

It sounds like a toxic relationship, doesn’t it? It feels like staying for the kids, or saying it’s been so long you don’t want to have wasted your time.

I don’t want to have wasted my time.

But maybe part of being an adult is being able to keep evolving. Maybe there’s power to be found in letting go of an old dream if it doesn’t fit the life I’ve already created for myself. There’s no shame in changing, our dreams will change as we do.

I’m not sure what the next few months hold for me. If I find an apartment, I’ll have my shot at this Irish dream. If I don’t, who knows where I’ll be next. All I know is that I’m not here to please my former self, or to impress anybody. I’m just here. Figuring it out.

That ought to be good enough for now.

I almost forgot! I moved into yet a new Airbnb. The first thing I did was take a shower. I finally started to relax. Look at me, I’m even hitting publish! A good night’s sleep and a nice shower, that’s the secret to a balanced life.

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Alex Rosado

Oversharer. French. Occasional critic. A bit dramatic but still figuring things out