Unpredictable

I have never done anything unpredictable, but that changed today when I woke up, packed a bag, went to the airport and randomly bought a ticket to Ireland. I needed something new, so new that I would feel that sense of being lost and out of place that I haven’t felt in years. Something that would calm that ennui inside that I haven’t been able to quiet. I know I should be happy, I have a good job and good boyfriend, I have a couple good friends. But, everything changed when Alice died. Three months ago, my younger sister was in a car crash, and she didn’t survive. The first month all I felt was pain. The second month I felt guilt, and a sense of needing to do more. This last month, pushed me over the edge. An overwhelming need to go out and do more with my life, life that Alice wouldn’t get to experience, consumed me. So here I was, at the airport, waiting for a plane to Ireland. I fiddled with the ticket in my hands, already nervous, but there was no going back now. After purchasing the ticket I had called my boss at the online news outlet I worked for to tell her I would need some time off, I had plenty of unused vacation and while suddenly demanding time off wasn’t really how things were done, I had earned a certain amount of leeway over the last 10 years. My boss, Simone, had talked me into using part of my vacation and working to provide travel content for the blog they had just launched. Ever the type to make the best of a situation, Simone even managed to spin my midlife crisis to her advantage.

Gnawing on my lip, I pulled my laptop from my bag- might as well start on content for that blog now before spending over six hours on a plane next to strangers looking over my shoulder, I hated writing under scrutiny. I opened up my laptop and started drafting out some minor details about what to pack, what to leave, how to make a spur of the moment trip happen. I spun it all out neatly, as if I had planned to wake up this morning, drive to JFK without telling anyone, and buy a ticket out of the country. As if I wasn’t silently slipping away from my personal life and everything I knew. Telling Simone had been out of necessity. I make a good living, but I am not independently wealthy by any means and I can’t afford to throw away what is not only my sole source of income, but a job I very much enjoy and built for myself over the last decade. Michael would be upset, maybe. We’ve been going out for almost a year, I supposed maybe I should’ve consulted him about my last minute whim. I can’t bring myself to feel that bad about it. He’s a good man, but there was never that spark, we both worked too much and didn’t make the time for each other that we should. It was debatable that we were even in a relationship since Alice died. I’ve been so strange and he’s been so distant. I called him after speaking with Simone, he didn’t pick up but I knew he wouldn’t. I left him a message, saying I was leaving, and then turned off my phone. I would handle what came, later. 

The boarding call startles me out of my thoughts, I slide my laptop back into my bag and get myself back together. Getting in line with the other passengers, I look out the window at the drizzling rain- my last look at New York for now. The flight attendant checks everything and sends me through to the plane, taking a deep breath, I step through and into a life that is no longer the predictable one I know.

Preform

photo credit @mylittleperceptions Monica McDaid
Hold your smile
Don’t let them see
You’re everything
They want you to be
 
Polished performer
You know what to do
One small slip,
Is the end of you
 
Point your feet
Perfect every move
Don’t dare trip-
You know what you’ll lose
 
Head up straight
Pools in your eyes
If they fall,
They’ll see all the lies
 
Harmless façade
A veritable Athena
Twirl and bend-
Dance, Ballerina 

Musings

SO. I’ve been doing okay with keeping up on here. That being said, I did have some content already prepared to go when I launched this site so that has definitely been helpful in maintaining a consistent stream of posts. As I’ve mentioned, I go through super productive phases where I’m writing all the time and full of inspiration, but there as just as many times where writing and focusing on that creative side can feel like a chore. I guess anything worth having will involve hard work and dedication in times when it would be easier to do nothing, or to give up. Sometimes when things feel too overwhelming, the urge to curl up and literally do nothing can become really hard to resist for me. This is how I end up eating out or ordering instead of cooking- something I genuinely enjoy doing. It’s easy to make yourself ignore the fact that you’re choosing not to do things you enjoy, because you’re tired or overwhelmed from the things you HAVE to do.

I enjoy my job. I’m good at it, I get to do different things, on good days I feel fulfilled by what I do. On bad days I feel consumed by work and can’t wait to get home. By the time I make it home or have a minute to breathe, I’m worn out. I’m mentally, emotionally, and physically over everything and the idea of doing ANYTHING (even things I enjoy) feels like too much. I can have workaholic tendencies, and I can push myself past the point I should stop at. Making excuses that support that pattern, is second nature. I work hard, I do everything I can to take care of my family, and when I get around to thinking about me and my needs all I can think about is the need to rest. The down side, is that leaves me feeling pretty unfulfilled or rewarded in my personal life.

The first step is always recognizing that you have a problem, right? I need to put just as much effort towards myself and activities I enjoy as I do towards other people’s needs and my job. This blog is a way for me to remember that a little more. Even though it would be easy to order dinner tonight, I’m going to cook a meal. It would be easy to stop writing and watch a show or listen to a podcast, but I’m going to write. I could be happy sleeping in late tomorrow, staying warm and cozy in my bed for much longer than necessary. But I think I’ll get up, make myself a coffee, and go outside with my daughters while there’s still some sun around. With little steps and little choices, maybe I can grow more personally and feel like a more well rounded person. Just some thoughts.

Nightmares

 My dreams 
 Were so big
 For many years
 Drowning screams 
 That asked for more
  
 My dreams
 Were so big
 Sometimes at night 
 Hot tears stream
 As they crush me
  
 My dreams
 Were so big
 That they blocked out
 Any small gleam 
 Of other paths
  
 My dreams 
 Were so big
 They trapped me here
 But now it seems 
 I’m leaving them 
  
 For me 

Unwelcome Memory

Mary walked into the room slowly, dropping her belongings as she went, in their respective places. Shoes slipped off by the door, keys into the bowl on the bookcase, purse on the bench. Little by little, putting the stress and the pressure of the day down with each step. The sun was setting, but the apartment was still bathed in enough soft orange light that Mary neglected the light switch as she passed into the kitchen. 

“Hi.” Mary screamed, clutching her throat she jumped back against the fridge. Gasping for breath, she looked into the living room beyond the kitchen and felt her skin tingle with relief as she exhaled. “James,” Mary said with a sigh, “what are you doing here?” 

“Sorry, Mary. I didn’t mean to cause a fright.” James looked at Mary apologetically, one corner of his mouth tipped up wryly. “I did try to call, you know.” He glanced down at the ground and shuffled his feet a little, his white sneakers stark against the red shag carpet. Mary inhaled slowly. Yes, she did know. He’d been calling for a few days now. She’d chosen to ignore the calls and their subsequent messages. She’d tucked everything away neatly, months ago. Folded prettily into a little box she never had to examine, because she made sure she stayed busy enough to avoid it. To crowd out those whispers in her head that came each night. Mary hadn’t wanted to answer those calls, or hear those messages. So like everything else she didn’t want to face, she just… didn’t. 

“Didn’t think that maybe that was a hint, huh?”, Mary finally said, to her stockinged feet on the kitchen tile. Staring at them she heard James clear his throat. “I thought maybe you’d be less able to ignore me in person. Though, you’ve hardly looked at me so maybe I’m wrong on that score.” He shifted, crossing his arms against his chest, thinking better of it and tucking his hands into his pockets. “We should talk, Mary.” His voice was soft, the words spoken gently, as if he was afraid to startle her. As if she might bolt out the door at any higher a decibel. Mary looked up slowly at the man standing across from her. It almost didn’t feel real. She’d spent so much time, put so much effort into not thinking about him. She’d tried to make it like he’d never existed. Yet, there he was. Same black jeans, t-shirt and sneakers. Same short dark hair curled against his temples. Mary looked at James, at  the lines of his face and the same rich brown eyes. Everything so at odds with what she’d tried to convince herself of for so many months. He did exist, and it still hurt.

Fall

Leaves turned down, as if they were stretching to meet the ground before their time to fall. Dressed in an array of bright oranges, yellows, and reds, they prepared for their final journey. To meet their fellow comrades already laying in various colorful piles, on the concrete or grass, some in the damp street floating in puddles. Strange that they seem so eager to let go of the tree, of the only home they have ever known, to leap into the end. Then I paused, and looking around, I saw what they were. The trees were tired, and empty. Bird nests abandoned in their branches, beaten by the wind that accompanied the frigid rain storms that had been visiting the area for the last month. They were ready for a long rest, no longer a welcoming home for the leaves that graced their branches. The leaves would move on, away from the tree that no longer had a place for them. Clouds hung heavy with precipitation in the sky, slipping through to choke out the few rays of sunlight that remained on the cold, gray day. It seemed as if they too were ready to let go, to release what they had been carrying, meticulously building up inside themselves. The wind hurried them along, but they stubbornly rolled through at their own pace, as though just to spite it. I wandered further down the street, looking at what was around me and wondering when the rest would let go. 

Can't Not Write

Words bring forward stars to forge a world from the ink, breathe, your heart will write.

Writing at Large

A blog about writing, sketching, running and other things

Lifesfinewhine

The Life & Ramblings Of A Zillennial

Little Perceptions

Poetry & Writings