Finale (Part 2)

It’s afternoon and I’m still in pajama pants with a mound of unwashed hair piled sloppily on my head. My glasses are on, though the contacts work better, and I’m curled up ion the chair in the corner of the family room. My mom is in her pajama pants and glasses too. Working on bills and emails for work. Files everywhere, and her phone that won’t stop buzzing. I have my laptop on my lap (I always have a laptop on my lap) and more internet windows open then my computer seems able to handle.

There’s a fire in the fire place (there is always a fire in the fire place) and my mom gets up every ten minutes to poke at it and soak in its warmth. To watch the tendrils of the flame spiral around the logs. It crackles loudly enough that I can hear it over the noises of the television as I watch the reflections on the glass doors.

I’m next to the fish tank. The one my mom got when my brother and I both left for school. It’s big and colorful. Full of fish in neon shades and plants in different hues of green. It bubbles quietly, and I listen to the sounds whenever mom pauses the television to answer her phone. She’s busy, always, and I don’t know how she does it.

My cell phone buzzes urgently on the chair next to me. The screen glows with a name of a friend, and the first few words of a text message I know I should read. I grab the phone and scroll through the words, sending off a quick response. I put the phone back down, farther away this time, so I won’t reach for it again. Unless I have to. Or I just want to, really, it’s right there, and it’s tempting, and….

I get so caught up in the distractions of my life that sometimes I forget the things I’m capable of; the words I can write, the things I can create. With my own two hands and my always over-tired brain, a constantly overheated laptop and a little bit of manic spark.

Writing every day this month has been an exercise in resilience as much as it’s been one in madness. It’s been a nice reminder of what I can do when I take the time and effort. It’s been hard—I haven’t had the proper energy every day, or the proper state of mind to produce good work, consistent work, but sometimes that happens—and putting in the effort to try gives me more of a chance of making something I’m proud of then just staring at blank Word documents for weeks at a time.

They say you never forget how to ride a bike. That when you hoist yourself up and balance on those two wheels that muscle memory just kicks in and you’re off—cruising down streets with the wind in your hair and your feet moving quickly on the peddles, the streets blurring in your peripheral vision. I feel that way about writing sometimes. When I sit myself down in this corner, with the heat of an overworked laptop in my lap, the words seem to flow with a speed and ferocity that I’m proud of.
Andy Dwyer gets it.

When I ended BEDN last year I talked about living my life like a scrapbook—collecting memories and moments, telling stories about who I am. This BEDN hasn’t been like that. This BEDN has been about processing emotions and processing where I am.

It’s not bad, it’s just different. Which I guess is what you can expect from a year of change, of maybe growing up a little. Change is scary, but it’s necessary.  It’s what makes the stories happen.  

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