Sometimes I want to just be free of responsibilities, duties, obligations, and worries. I want to feel light and airy, I want to be a souffle. I want to rise every day and be free to meditate, simmer and stew in my own thoughts and daydreams. I get my best ideas from my daydreams. Remember that post about my dream Saturday? I want to make that happen.
I feel horrible for wanting to be selfish for just a little while. It seems as if so much depends on my attention and so many people need me for my various abilities, that I sometimes forget to be important to myself. Don’t get me wrong. I love all the extra responsibilities that I have and the volunteering that I do. All of it comes from my heart. What I don’t like is being required or requested to do things that can be handled by someone else. What I don’t like is being asked to do something that someone else was just too lazy to do. What I don’t like is being asked my opinion on something as if it will matter, when said person is just going to continue as is!
I have anxiety. I wish to be calm and I want to willingly let go of things outside of my control. But just like many people who I know, I worry about money and work and my students and my parents and one million other things that invade my mind like parasites. I know that I suffer from it because of the early morning fretting and the constant worry about things that I can’t control. My anxiety does not allow me to be calm unless I am writing or thinking about food. Even when I am writing, I worry about what people will say about me, my thoughts, and those words that escape. That’s the qualm before the calm. One day, I will tell all of my worries and restraints, “que sera sera” and they will wait outside my Saturday room while I escape, write, and read. Maybe they will get tired of waiting and stalking me. Maybe they will pack up their bags and leave me for a local politician some distance away. Maybe they won’t be waiting for me like they are every morning at 3:30.
I don’t want this to be the end. I don’t even want this to be the ne plus ultra of my ability. So here I am bearing my deepest want. Here I am paint-stripper scraping the basement of my soul and telling you, the reading world, what I want. I don’t want. I don’t want finality to be mundane. I want you to read my words and feel as if you were breaking your Fitbit goals in my head. Run around in here, have a seat, get comfortable.
But that’s the hard part. Who can ever say that they feel genuinely naked and unafraid with how they are perceived? I don’t. Even when I am exhausted and having that moment of clarity, I hold back from what I really want to say. Not that I fear frightening people, I fear letting you know me. I fear the finality of your lost curiosity and disinterest. If you get to know me, the writer, you will know my soul. And that personal revelation feels final.
Still, I want my finality to be the crowing achievement. I want to leave the words uttered from the depths of my living soul to never die. I crave the immortality that only literature can deliver. In a hundred centuries, I want some one to dust me off, open my cover, and fall in love with the words that desperately escaped me.
From the moment that I wake to the second that I fall asleep, I have traversed the corners of my mind and lost myself in its maze. Much like my grand and well-planned ideas, I try to begin with some pattern of order.
For example, I had a dream that instantly gave me the idea for a book. I instantly start writing ideas down and doing research only to be distracted by the idea of a poem. The idea of the poem reminds me of something that I read by Langston Hughes. I love Langston. Off I go in search of a book of his poems that I keep in the guest room. I cannot find the book, so I go online and use the remainder of my Amazon gift card to buy another.
While online, I see a link (courtesy of website cookies) to more Happy Planner stickers. Anyone who knows me knows that I love my Happy Planner/adult sticker book/scrapbook/life organizer. One “Oooh! I want that!” second later, I am digging in my work bag for my planner. Darn, I haven’t finished the weeks of May and there are many activities on Post-it notes waiting to adorn my stickered pages. Ten minutes later, I am sitting at the dining room table with my calendar caddy, planner, and laptop. As I mark the dates, my mind wanders to the meal planning and recipe stickers that I found for less than a dollar.
The menu stickers make me think of dinner. What should I cook for dinner? Speaking of dinner, Ayesha Curry sure makes meal prep look easy. I then proceed to research recipes online. But, the kitchens are so pretty and there is a conveniently placed Pinterest pinning button. As I pin the dream kitchen for the dream house that my dream job will purchase, I think of lemons. I like lemons. Do I have any lemons? Nope. I decide to go to the store for some lemons. Lemon, butter, garlic, and chicken.
Mental list made, I take a shower. The shower reminds me of songs that I need to learn for praise team practice. I jump out of the shower, leaving fat wet footprints on the floor as I run to get my phone. With the playlist going, I sing for the rest of the shower. The phone rings. Some poor soul thinks I deserve a free vacation that I must pay for. Sorry, no. A vacation outfit comes to mind. I reach in the closet and grab my sun yellow kimono shawl, a white tank, and some jeans. Mascara applied, I head to the store thinking of lemons. On the way, I see the new library they are building. I think of the books that I want to read. So, I go to the library. Books make me want to sit and read. Well, sit and read as I drink coffee or tea. So, I head to Starbucks, pre-order my tea, and sit for a spell. The book makes me hungry for tacos. Tacos would be great for dinner. I eat a taco from the place right by Micheal’s. I wonder if they have more clearance stickers at Michael’s.
Ten minutes and three dollars later, I am in afternoon traffic headed home where the laundry is not done, the dinner will not be, and the beginning of the book never was.
My mind is a maze where I am often distracted and sidetracked. Although I know there is a way to master it, I find that the turns and walls keep me doing exactly everything that I want at that one fleeting moment. Perhaps Daedalus had a point; just like his masterful Labyrinth, my mind changes and grows with my every move. I think I like the happiness of it.
Speaking of happy, my Happy Planner cover reminds me of the lemons that I never bought. Doesn’t lemon herb-butter chicken sound delicious? Does Ayesha have a recipe for that?
I recently suffered a setback. Knowing better, but feeling mortal, I got my hopes up on an endeavor that I considered the perfect opportunity for me. For a little over a week, I sweetly suffered through daydreams. Decor. Quotes. Dreams of desktop adorableness and rewarding work. Then, as if sharing the punishment of Prometheus, my daydream dissolved in a mere nanosecond. To say that I was upset, is a severe understatement. I cried the tears of a grieving soul. I cried until my eyes and cheeks were red and raw. I cried for the loss of the daydream and the happiness that I envisioned as its accomplice. Mainly, I cried because I felt like a failure, unequivocally unaware of my shortcomings. I rested and then I cried some more.
Until now, I never understood how the loss of hope, even a hope so small that it could sit on the tip of a needle, could feel like the loss of a loved one, a part of myself, or a piece of my soul. But I am reminded that the loss of hope is temporary. It won’t last forever. This daydream wasn’t for me. Someone else is enjoying the visions of my future and that hurts me a little, but it doesn’t end me. This setback is only temporary. Who knows what tomorrow will bring. And just like it never happened, I will dream and hope again.
What happened to the ‘r’? How did pretty become petty? Social media negativity is as bitter as Denatonium, the stuff used to prevent ingesting poisons. But that is just what we do. We ingest the poisonous posts and we like the petty. We sit with our snacks and we phone a friend with the new revelations. This is a petty society enthralled with the joys that bitterness brings.
What happened to the ‘r’?
We lost it; there is no respect. We lost it; there is no responsiblity. We lost it; there is no relevance. We lost it; there is no reasoning.
I could go on forever with the losses, but it would only serve to satiate me. I know how bitter tastes and feels in a moment of pure unadulterated fury. But even more, I know how sweet tastes and feels in all the moments before, during, and after. Instead of joining the madness, I can change me. I don’t have to accept the petty. I can be and see the kind of pretty that makes the bitter sweet. Maybe we can all be more sweet than bitter.
I am a dreamer. My memories are like a cassette tape. LIFE’S MIXTAPE. Side A being the truth, and Side B being the dream. Eventually, the tape gets worn and I can’t tell the difference between the sides. I no longer mind the warping tune that emits from the dream. I accept my ability to create it as a form of genius. The dream will become the truth as I become a better me. No more sides. No regrets. Just a mixtape with my windows down.