Here Be Dragons

Sometimes it is absolutely necessary to remind yourself that it’s okay, that you’re only suffering a minor setback and that life will continue on, as it indeed always does. You may not want life to change, or approve of it, you may desire it more than you desire anything else in the world. But at some point, change comes for us all and the only thing you have to do is be ready.I wrote a piece about driving a while ago, about how I just couldn’t seem to, and about how it was a source of great shame for me. I finished the piece by saying that my New Year Resolution was to drive more, to be free of the bonds that strapped me into the passenger seat. It has been a week since the year started and what have I done to accomplish that goal?

 

 A bit actually.

The second or third I drove to the store. I can’t say that I drove back from said store, but I darn sure drove there. And my husband and I talked about it and I realized that if I just kept to the quick and simple stuff, I would never succeed in my goal at all.

But I’m not going to lie to you. This is not easy for me.

Yesterday, I had work and I usually have my husband take me in, so that I can just focus on work and he can hang out at the school and get stuff done. We’re on break, which makes that sentence completely illogical, but we’re an active sort of people who quite like the academic scene. He hadn’t slept well and asked if I could take myself in. I immediately burst into tears, the panic having surged through me faster than a tornado. I felt woozy, nauseous and above all, I felt ashamed. Why couldn’t I just get over it? What was wrong with me? So on our way home yesterday, after he graciously picked me up, I asked him timidly if he wouldn’t mind coming with me either today or Friday as my passenger. He agreed, saying he wanted to start working out anyway and this would force him to do so. Last night, I went to bed nervous, exhausted and wondering what I’d done.

This morning, he again told me he hadn’t slept well and I let him sleep a little longer. I prepared my stuff, got my coffee and took the dog out. I looked over the parking lot and once again got the panicked sort of emotions and sensations. I knew that I would have a difficult time talking myself into it and an even worse time if I talked myself out of it. So I hauled myself up to our apartment and grabbed a few more things (let’s be real here- I grabbed a bunch of good luck charms), waited for my husband to finish getting ready and then marched myself down to the car. My hands were shaking, I felt sick and I started the car.

Wouldn’t you know it, rush hour was waiting for me.

I can’ tell you the curse words that streamed in my head. How dare other people be on the road when I was trying to get over my fears? I mean, didn’t they know that I was going to be driving?

And I realized that there was no other place, no other time, that could possibly make my journey more ideal. It was rush hour that gave me a headache, made me a nervous passenger. It was the highway that made my heart race. And that sounds like the settings for the battleground to me. 

I made it to the school, having managed to drive on two separate highways and through campus traffic. I didn’t throw up, pass out, or any of the terrible things that I assumed would happen. I didn’t crash, didn’t die and didn’t break down. I didn’t even say that chant from the previous post. I marched myself up to work with a smile on my face, saying hello to everyone I met. I know that I’m not done for the day-my shift has only really just begun and I’m still nervous about the drive home, but when I grabbed one of my good luck pieces from my pocket, I had to smile pretty fiercely. I mean, just look at how fitting it is.

  

One week down, fifty one more to go.

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I wish to be a duck

I had this thought on the way to work today and I tried to reason it out. I could not, were I a water fowl, live in safety. There are humans who bring their guns to kill me, there are animals who bring their teeth and claws for the sole purpose to eat me or my children, there are humans who fill my home with waste and sewage, making it impossible for me to live a healthy life.

But.

There is a layer of fat, which causes me to be warm. There are always other birds with which to herald out the news. There are feathers, which would, at a moment’s notice, carry me off to anywhere I please, without so much as a thought about money, security or planning. There is no lack of colors with which I am covered, some changing hue in the irridescence of the sun. There are ponds, like the one at which I currently perch, that I may bathe freely. There are trees to shelter me, to feed me. 

I could be free.

  
But then my thoughts return to the present, and I am caught with two legs and a heart filled with hope. I would give it all up, everything I hold dear, to free my heart, to free myself from these constraints of gravity. I would soar above the clouds and straight into bliss, for that is where I truly belong, not stuck here with my shoes in the earth, smelling the decay of the leaves and whispering to the squirrels that come to me for sustinance. But here I am, smiling as they sing the song of my people, trumpeting like downy angels. One day, my fellow travelers, I shall join you in the sky. But until then, perhaps I will find contentment in just breathing the same air.

I’m not suffering from delusions, but as Alice herself once said, “I believe as many as six impossible things before breakfast.” Truly though, would it not be fantastic to be a thing with cares so few and the power of wings?

In other news, I would also like to be a mermaid, but I seem to lack fins and that rant is for another day to come.