When I was little my parents made sure I would learn how to swim. They figured that since we lived next to Lake Michigan that if I didn't learn to swim, it'd be wrong. It would be just wrong to live next to a Great Lake and not learn how to manage the waves. So when I was four I was put in swimming lessons. Here I'd be able to learn. I'd get a feel for the water and the way your eyes burn when you've been exposed to the chlorine. Yes, I think I had goggles but you know what I mean. Feeling the flow of the water wasn't really scary. They strapped me into those floaties so I'd always be carried. Eventually you learn to let those floaties go. After time the deep end becomes the real prize. You know, when you first learn to swim you start with just a toe? You dip it in the cool water and then s l o w l y you put in a little more and keep going until your feet finally touch the floor of the swimming pool. It can take some time to get to the deep end. Some people love to just dive in. Not me. I had to work my way up. Finally, when I did it I felt like the ultimate winner - like I was a real Olympic swimmer. I'd need a gold medal to showcase my mettle and to display to the world how I made it to the deep end and I'd be unforgettable! Little me, tiny little me - can you imagine? With all of the lessons I was more than prepared for Lake Michigan. I was prepared for the salty oceans, the streams, rivers and the little ponds. There was not a single body of water that I'd not dive upon. Head first as I submerge myself into the wells of the world where maybe just maybe I'd learn something new about myself and everybody else. In the process of it all, it seems like it was so long ago that I really learned what it meant to go off the deep end. The deep end endeavor is all too heavy for any regular swimmer to comprehend. You'd need pristine training, and even then - you might not fit in.
Sorryto be blunt, not everyone is meant for the deep end. I was just a lucky one. You might think of it as chosen. By experiencing the deep end, I learned not to depend. F r e e z i n g. Ice cold waves resemble the ways of old and familiar former companions who shapeshifted into shadows and who all became so shallow. S W I M. The waves, broken and choppy, they'll push you around and pull you down. Ride them. They will always try to drown, but there's a secret. Listen. In the deep end you can never feel the bottom. That may be part of the problem; In the deep end do you have the ability to feel? Or comprehend what is even real if you never hit the bottom? Once you've been in the deep end for a while, you despise all things shallow. When they say I've gone off the deep end, just know that it's true. I was built for this; no, trained for this. Not everyone can handle the deep end blues. Not everyone can swim. Not everyone can handle the weight of the waves. Can you?
This is a short story that was written sometime at the beginning of 2022. This is my first self-published fictional short story. It features elements of contemporary and political issues regarding women and teenage pregnancy. Take of it what you will. How the story ends is entirely up to you.
A strand of black hair fell in front of Sophie’s face as she sat in the bathroom silently crying. She was already running late for school. As she cried in the bathroom in complete stillness, her little sister Sasha knocked on the door.
Sophie knew she needed to get out of the bathroom and quickly dried her tears. Her mom shouted from the hallway and told her to open up because Sasha had to brush her teeth. It was 7:13 am on a crisp fall morning in Boston. Sophie opened the door and let Sasha in. Sophie picked up her little sister and embraced her with a huge hug. Her thoughts were running 1000 miles per minute as she set Sasha back down.
She coaxed Sasha over to the sink to help her brush her teeth. “Soapy?” little Sasha asks, “What’s that?”, as she pointed to the tiny pink pregnancy test on the counter.
Soapy was Sophie’s nickname since Sasha learned how to talk. She could never pronounce “Sophie”, so as a toddler she resorted to Soapy. Ever since then, it stuck. It’s like when Sophie was little and her mother laughed when she called chocolate milk “cawlet milk”. Sophie quickly snatched the test up and put it in the back pocket of her blue jeans.
“It’s nothing, Sasha. Here, put some toothpaste on your brush.”
Sophie squeezed the toothpaste onto her sister’s toothbrush and made a fart noise. Sasha burst into laughter and Sophie smiled at her, satisfied that she distracted Sasha from the pregnancy test. Sophie turned on the water and rushed out of the bathroom. She told her mom she was leaving for school, grabbed her backpack, and ran out the door.
Sophie ran down the gray, cold cement steps of the red brick two-flat condo. The smell of fall leaves on the ground swirled into Sophie’s nose. The thought of her dad crossed her mind. She wondered what he would think of her being pregnant if he was still around and didn’t abandon her, her mom, and Sasha. Slinging her blue backpack over her shoulder she ran toward the bus stop. She looked behind her and saw that the bus was nearby and catching up quickly. In unison, she and the bus raced to the bus stop on Massachusetts Avenue, side by side.
Catching her breath as the doors swung open violently, she got on the bus, waved her bus card, and plopped down onto a seat near the back of the bus. As she sat down, the pregnancy test in the back pocket of her jeans pushed itself into her as a reminder that it was still there. Her heart pounded and beads of sweat dripped down her neck. She thought of what she would tell Russ.
Worried about how it might affect their relationship, Sophie realized how much she loved him. Sophie loved Russ more than anything. They had been together for three years. She envisioned holding a newborn and the idea of giving birth at the age of 17. As her thoughts scrambled, an elderly man got on the bus and sat in the handicapped seat. He pulled out a newspaper from his inside coat pocket and a bag of cocaine from the other. Sophie was amused at the sight and laughed quietly to herself waiting for the bus driver to notice. The man dipped a penny into his bag and held it to his nose. His clothes were raggedy and she could smell him from across the bus.
The bus sped over a pothole and the old man hollered, “Come on, man! Don’t you know how to fucking drive? Damn these potholes!”
The bus driver had surely upset him now for making him spill. “I’m not sure who you’re getting loud with. Yell at me again, and you can walk the rest of the way.”
The old man got up from his seat and he slipped the tiny bag into his pocket. Hobbling over to the bus driver he started banging on the dashboard.
“That’s it! You’re off!”, the bus driver yelled.
He stopped the bus and stood up appearing much taller than the old man.
“This is bullshit! It’s freezing out there this morning!”, the old man yelled and cursed the bus driver’s name all the way off the bus and down the cold pavement. This caused Sophie to arrive at school even later.
Sophie continued to daydream about lunchtime because she knew she’d see Russ in the cafeteria. She slouched at her desk and stared out the window, unable to focus. Chewing gum helped her with her anxiety, but it was not allowed. Her English teacher always made sure to give Sophie a hard time about it. Sophie chewed away relentlessly. She suddenly felt the heat of a million eyes staring at her. The entire class was silent.
“Sophie?!” her teacher exclaimed.
Her head snapped right into the direction of Ms. McCauley.
“Huh?”, said Sophie. “You’re chewing gum again. You know it isn’t allowed,” Ms. McCauley said.
Sophie’s eyes squinted and her brows pushed together in the middle of her forehead as if they were trying to touch each other.
Sophie yelled back, “UGH! I’m not hurting anyone.”
“Sophie, you can go to the office and claim your detention slip”, Ms. McCauley said.
Sophie got out of her seat, scooting her chair back so loud that it screeched on the floor. She purposely wanted to disrupt the class for disrupting her daydreams.
Slamming the old wooden door on her way out she heard Ms. McCauley’s voice echoing down the hall.
“Shakespeare’s plays can be divided up into different categories: Comedies, histories, and tragedies.” Sophie heard the words; Comedies, histories, and tragedies. If my life were a play it must be a tragedy, she thought to herself.
She sat in the office waiting to schedule her detention while still chewing her gum when she saw Mr. Tuffin, the school social worker. Peering through the glass window of the main office door she spotted him instantly. His hair was silver and white making him look as cold as ice, which Sophie always thought was ironic considering he was the opposite.
His blue plaid button-down shirt was part of an unwritten dress code that all the staff his age also wore. Mr. Tuffin used his hands when he talked. His ring finger had a gold band and his hands looked as wrinkled as laundry that hadn’t been folded for days. He was talking to the sophomore science teacher. Mr. Tuffin was the only person who truly was able to see the good in Sophie. They met when she went to peer-mediation for a fight she got into with another girl on the first day of freshman year. He spotted her sitting in the office.
Ending the conversation with his colleague he came into the office where Sophie was sitting.
“By the looks of it, you’re not excited to be here, huh? What happened?” he asked her.
“I was chewing gum”, she said, as a giant bubble formed on her lips and popped carelessly.
“A classic Sophie Seskas move! Nice,” he exclaimed. He was always cheerful and tried to find humor in everything.
“You know the rules,” he said. “Yeah, yeah. And you know more” she hinted.
“Soph, you’re a good kid. You shouldn’t be in trouble so often. I know things have been rough since your dad left, but you’re smarter than that.” he told her.
She looked at him like a puppy looks at its owner after having an accident in the house. She knew he was right. Mr. Tuffin said she was just a diamond in the rough. Chewing gum was the least of her worries now. She didn’t care about detention or her dad. She wanted to speak to the Dean and head to lunch so she could see Russ. Besides that, she really could use a cigarette, or maybe a joint.
After getting her detention slip from the Dean to bring home to her mom to sign, she finally got to the cafeteria. Russ was standing near a corner of the lunchroom with a group of friends. Dressed in hoodies and sweatpants of all colors of the rainbow they resembled a living canvas of spilled paint. She managed to get Russ alone.
He was much taller than her, and his eyes were the color of dark chocolate. His hair was long and brown and flowed naturally like a river. His olive skin was opposite to hers, and she liked that about him.
“Sophie, relax,” he assured her. “Russ! How can I?” she said with tears in her eyes. She looked around at the other kids in the cafeteria. The smell of burgers made her want to throw up. She hoped nobody would notice her crying.
“This is serious,” she said.
“Maybe it’s a false positive,” he assured her.
“Maybe that’s a false hope.” She mimicked him.
“What are we going to do?” she asked. Russ was shocked by the news and could tell that Sophie was more than upset.
In a reassuring tone, he told her, “We will figure it out together. Meet me by the tree after class.”
The tree was their spot. It was where they always hung out after school. A giant oak stood tall on the lawn near the track and football fields. She anticipated the last bell’s ring more anxious than a child on Christmas morning.
After school, they smoked under the tree.
“Did you tell anyone, Russ?” Sophie asked him as the smoke blew out of her mouth.
“No… Well, I told Johnnie,” his voice cracked. Her eyes widened.
“You shouldn’t have told anyone yet! Damn it”, she kicked the tree.
“Everyone will find out sooner or later anyway if we decide to keep it” Russ told her. They stayed near the tree for hours as they contemplated what to do. They stayed near the tree until the stars came out despite the cold winds of autumn.
Sophie strolled home after dark. Her mom waited up for her.
“Anything you want to tell me?” her mother asked quietly so as to not wake Sasha.
Sophie closed the door softly behind her. Her mother, Maria, gave her the look of death with green eyes that pierced her like the sting of a bullet. Her mother looked just like her, only older, wiser, and a little more stout. Maria knew that Sophie was acting out due to her dad leaving them. She tried to go easy on Sophie when she could, but Sophie’s behavior was impossible to manage at times. Maria missed the days when Sophie was still innocent and ignorant of the evil and heartbreak of the world.
“Mrs. Bernardi called tonight,” Maria announced. Sophie’s heartbeat thundered in her chest. She knew Johnnie told his mom. Johnnie Bernardi was the biggest snitch and unfortunately, best friends with Russ.
“Asshole” Sophie mumbled under her breath, “Hell, of course, she did!”
The next day Maria and Russ’s mom, Angelica, spoke on the phone and decided that Sophie would get an abortion.
“They are simply too young. This can’t happen,” said Mrs. Angelica Jones.
Russ’s mom also wasn’t fond of Sophie. Sophie felt confused, alone, and unsure of what to think or do. What would happen to her if she had an abortion? She wondered if it would kill her. Would it damage her insides? How could she go through with it? There was a baby inside of her. It was her and Russ’s baby. There was no way she could go through with it. Maria and Angelica scheduled Sophie’s appointment as soon as they found out.
On the morning of the procedure, she didn’t bother to style her hair or put on makeup. It’s not like she had any reason to be glamorous. She was nervous and shaking the entire car ride to the clinic. When she and her mom pulled up there was a large group of people standing outside on the sidewalk just near the entrance. They dressed in bright orange vests and were carrying large signs; the enormous signs that you only see at a protest. The signs had blood-red paint which Sophie thought was used as symbolism.
Crosses were painted on the signboards, and the group chanted about how abortion is murder. God will give you hope. God will give you strength. Don’t kill your baby. It’s an innocent child. They shouted. They weren’t new to what they were doing. They must have rehearsed more than a cheer squad getting ready for finals.
“MURDERER!” they screamed at her.
They spewed hatred and verses from their bibles as she went into the clinic, not even 18 years old, with her very embarrassed mother by her side. Sophie and her mother said nothing. The air was filled with such a strong silence that it consumed them entirely.
Sophie had a decision to make. She considered the words of the women outside, even though they seemed like religious nut freaks. She thought of Russ and his dark chocolate eyes and his olive skin. She wondered how the baby would look. She felt it inside of her. Sophie was not ready to part. She thought of what the baby’s nose would be like. Would it be wide or upturned? Would the baby be a boy? A girl? Sophie wondered.
Her mother called her to the desk where she was filling out paperwork.
“You need to sign this. You need to consent to the procedure.”
She couldn’t look her mother in the eye. She took the pen. As she lifted the pen, she imagined running out of the clinic and the protestors cheering her on. They would shout for her. Those protesters would celebrate for her. They’d celebrate as if Sophie had just crossed the finish line of the Boston Marathon. The applause was so loud now in Sophie’s mind. Her hand trembled as she held the pen. She reminded herself of who she was and how much she’d endured in her life so far.
Sophie realized that this decision was solely up to her; and was one only she could make. The only one who could truly advocate for her in this world was herself.
If you were Sophie – what would you do? This story was written with the intention of sharing a fictional point of view of a direct inside look at millions of stories just like these. While fictional, this story has many truthful elements that take place not just in the USA but across the world.
Teenage pregnancy and abortion will forever be debatable and controversial issues that people may in fact never agree on. What I hope readers take from this story is the fact that we all make our own choices. While the choices we make might not be agreeable to some – it is best to remember that the choices we make must be ones that benefit our own lives regardless of what other people may think. Life is short and pretty wild. Be careful, stay safe, and be smart.
I’m just a product In a department store. Waiting on a shelf To be used like a whore. And when they are done they Turn their backs On the shelf once again. They consume me 'til they’re done. 'Til they have no use for me anymore. It never matters that I cared. It never matters how long I was there. It never matters the time we spent. It only matters what they spent. They want a return. They want a refund. They want the newest model, the next best thing. Except, now - I’m vintage. They don’t make ‘em like me anymore. The new models are not as efficient. They say the new models are cheaply made - or that they’re all the same. They break down easily and they don’t work. They’d never have a warranty. Maybe the consumers should have thought of that before. Maybe the consumers should have recognized my value. I’m a product with nothing left to prove. They made their choice, they are the Ones who choose. I don’t have an option and really - I never did. Donate me NOW to some “less fortunate” person - Maybe they will bid! Maybe they will cherish me, And keep me safe. They’ll look at me and say: “This one’s a keeper.” “A real collector’s item - she’s rare - she’s got old school features.” Unique - I’d be. Complete - I’d be. Finally - I’d be Loved. © KIMBERLY ANNE INC. 2022
Don't you know? Silly girl! You probably caused this! He's harmless. You're the reason why he acts that way... Maybe you pushed him Over the edge. Oh, you don't know him? Then maybe it's how you were dressed instead. Or the way you painted your lips red. Surely, you are at fault! You're the monster, silly girl, remember? He is harmless. If they are all harmless then make me harmless too. When we defend ourselves let us be harmless too! "Free from harm. Not capable of injury." What is injury?! What is injury?! Can it be a philosophical buzz word? Yes, if you ask me! How does one define injury? We all know what it means but to each of us it means something different ! Every abuser was harmless. Every serial killer was harmless. Every rapist was harmless. Every theif, every liar every cheater - Every murderer was once harmless! We are all harmless until we are not! Now there's food for thought. I hope you shove it down your throat and choke! It's all harmless. . . © KIMBERLYANNEINC 2022
Fury. She is fury. Fury like the waves Of the Michigan Lake On a stormy day. She sees them. Sitting on a window’s ledge Atop a high rise, she is Hanging H a n g i n g Letting the wind feel her And free her As she lets the smoke rise Out of her lips and let it kiss The Sky With Passion. She sends her whispers into the galaxy Where the darkest purple clouds live And black waves Crash And Shake No - it is not a dream. It is a very real scene. A memory of her youth; so pristine.
Room 121 – a Tribute to the Mule
Narrative Poem by @kimberlyanneinc
Welcome. Before you begin reading this narrative poem, I want to say thank you for being here. Room 121 is a place that you have been to before. It is a place that we have all been to before, in some way or another. It is up to you to determine what Room 121 is about. Room 121 is a diverse room filled with every kind of energy and emotion that is possible for human beings to demonstrate and feel. Room 121 is full of mysteries that are not meant to be solved. Room 121 is what you want it to be.
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Room 121 – a Tribute to the Mule
What’s going to happen in Room 121? I swore to myself the last time we were there that I’d never set foot in a courthouse again. You know it was not supposed to happen this way. Like an out of body experience I see the stupid
happyplastered look on my face. Walking with you like I should be so proud when in fact I should have hid my face. Then maybe now I wouldn’t be so embarrassed and ashamed of being associated with your name. Almost reaching Room 121 I’ve practically crumbled and just might disintegrate. What will happen in Room 121? In Room 121 I’ll become brand new and it’s going to be like I never even knew you. Remember that moment in Cinderella? There’s a fairy godmother who completes the impossible. She made it all possible for a transformation to take place. Can you see the wand now waving? Waving around now right in front of her face? A transformation I’ll go through even though I think really, it’s you who needs one too and you probably need it much more than me since you have issues with your eyes, your ears, and all things. You need glasses so you can see. A hearing aid so you can listen. What is going to take place in Room 121? If only a real fairy godmother exists, then she could help me help you! With this issue of vision. Helping you would be much too kind considering there is no hope for you anyway. In Room 121 I will release all of the pain and the guilt and the misery and the shame - along with all of your lies and your undiagnosed illnesses and that fake bit of chivalry that brays out of you like a True ass. In Room 121 I will walk in alone and I won’t mind at all because I’ll be one step closer to escaping any thought of you for the rest of my life. Sometimes I wonder if the world only knew how weak and infantile you truly are if it would HELP. Do you think it will be beautiful in Room 121? Then they’d be able to escape you too; but like me they wouldn’t have to run because you’d already be gone. Faster and faster just like a marathon of foolishness and mental fragility due to your frail existence. In Room 121 donning silver attire, I will walk in with pride and explain my mistakes of how I fell for your schemes, your strategies and your lies and how NOW they have made me only so much more indestructible - Rugged and impenetrable either through the heart or unmentionables, thank you. Thank. You.My armor is heavy, and my battle scars are unseen. Only those who wear this armor too will understand what that means. With my head held high and curious eyes glaring at the gleam that my iron shield, metal plate, and inlaid sword bring - everyone will know that you are not a real King. Just another imitation descended from swindlers and shams, who could only hope and dream to move on to better things instead of constantly being masters of the masquerade. I’m sorry you were built that way. The crudeness of my words, is veracious as your credentials of being extremely detrimental. The fact that you are a mule, and one that is destructive is comical to say the least. Being a tool is exactly the purpose of such an animal. Stubborn and a certified beast of burden - of this I’m certain. As I lift the helmet off of my head, and start to remove my sheathing, the verdict is reached and now I am breathing. A sigh of relief blasted out of my chest knowing that I was heard and that your cowardice made it all so easy. Sailing out now of Room 121 I go away and in search of anything that isn’t you for eternity now. Sailing out now of Room 121, off and away there I go, here I go, to anything or anyone that isn’t you forever now. Sailing out now with my armor, weapons, and my ship, hands on my waist with the hips you will miss - farther than ever so you can never taste my lips again. Assailant should have been your title once long ago, but you can’t be called that anymore. You’ve lost this battle and I’ve won the war. Now thanks to Room 121 I am perpetually unassailable. And when the truth hits the ears of all who will listen, this is how the tale will go.
Thank you for reading. If you’re a rebel writer, let me know what literary devices you can spot in this poem. I’d love to hear from you. ❤ ‘Til then, happy writing!
Do you remember the first time you brought your newborn home from the hospital? Your first baby. Do you remember counting every breath? Feeling their chest? Putting your ear next to their tiny little lips that would one day ask, “WHY?”
I’ve recalled that feeling and lived it again. But this time with no bassinet, no crib, no play pen. Instead I’m laying on the bathroom floor, worried sick. Counting breaths per second as the clock ticks. As I think of my foolish ways, and the dismay that was brought on by today, I ponder it all as I stare at my new stray. With all that I can and all I’ve got, an offering should take place.
She’s eating and breathing and drinking which is a relief. Considering her condition, as told by the vet it’s somewhat of a rendition of – well, I don’t even need to tell. You already know. She’s mostly silver, grayish, kinda blue. She has a tiny white patch on her chest too. Her eyes are the darkest green, but somehow resemble emeralds or jade that have been spun into a galaxy that lives in her gaze.
Mystic as she is no matter what is wrong, I’ll treat her like my own and sing her all the songs. The ones I always chant to the other two I have, like a ritual I plant and water what I can.
Filled her water several times, because she kept drinking and drinking. Water is a gift of life, primordial and consistently. Thinking and thinking, I call her Nixie. Tiny little sprite, washing everything down. I watch her, observing as she circles around. 9 times like the waters of Styx. If she has 9 lives, then I hope they let me have – at least one.
I hope she doesn’t go yet, because we’ve only just begun. But if she has to take her journey, she won’t do it alone. Precious little Nixie Styx, this can be your new home. ✨
On a Saturday afternoon,
When the sun is out, and the sky is bright blue,
I’m in the house stuck again.
All alone and dancing in my room,
With a vacuum in hand.
I remember your face and the things that you said.
You don’t remember of course,
But I’ll never forget.
Now I’ll dance with my vacuum instead of with you.
I open the window to let in some fresh air.
Make my way down the three flights of stairs.
Just to wash all the laundry, I see images of you
In my mind, they taunt me.
Loading the clothes bit by bit,
I wash them and you as I close the lid.
Carrying my soap and basket
Back up the stairs, it’s not so bad I say,
Carrying the weight of my fears.
The weight of the years, the ones spent.
The time wasted that I won’t get back.
Into the kitchen now, here I go.
A sink full of dishes is waiting for me.
They’ve been there forever, just like I waited for you.
Those dishes can’t sit much longer,
We can’t live that way.
Soak them in suds, watch it go down the drain.
Turn around now, and I stare at the floor.
Bits and crumbs, tiny pieces on the tile.
The walls close in, and I feel the pressure.
Grabbing the broom hardly even remembering your smile.
Sweeping myself off my feet as I sweep the kitchen,
You’d be silly to think I even miss you a smidgen.
Hot water now fills up a bucket.
Another romantic date with my mop.
This is what I signed up for,
It’s exactly what I wanted.
Did you think I’d be your little puppet?
You had them lined up.
No use for me.
The truth would have been good.
Or maybe even sympathy.
Dirty mop water, pour it all out.
Like I did with my heart,
And you flushed it all down.
Not a care in the world, you don’t hear a single sound.
There’s a pot on the stove,
It’s been cooking all day.
Stirring and stirring, daydreaming as I go my own way.
Who is better at stirring the pot?
Is it me or is it you?
Because it’s not just myself who I need to feed,
But the little one who is relying on me.
What is a bathroom break when you must clean the bathroom?
Bleach, baking soda, and mini cleaning brushes,
Are part of my auxiliary.
It’s standard for the code, luxury is forebode.
Don't get caught taking a breather.
Scrubbing the shower, I scour and scour.
Pretending I could scrub you just the same,
But off of my skin.
Dusting the shelves and little knick knacks is part of the routine.
When cleaning the home, I’m also cleaning me!
I polish the floors, while you polish your whores.
When I caress the dishes, you are giving kisses.
I wash the tub, and I dry the puddles.
Reminiscent of the time when I wasn’t sitting in a muddle.
What touch feels like now is a mystery to me.
But then again, so are communication, respect, and boundaries.
The night comes fast, almost too quickly.
I still have one task to complete swiftly.
On top of the cooking and cleaning, I take out the trash.
Symbolic, I think, as I laugh and I laugh.
The house is sparkly and gleaming.
But a repair needs to be made, so I’ve learned how to do it.
I do your job now since you’re not around.
I don’t mind it at all, in fact, it’s quite profound.
The things you’ve taught me just by disappearing, I find quite endearing.
While you’re out nailing and screwing, I’m doing the same.
The only difference is the things you nail and screw actually breathe and have a name.
Reciprocate. Reciprocal. Reciprocity. These don’t exist for me. Wearied of investing time. How can it even be measured? Going above and beyond. Sublime. Transcendence. It’s all a lie. There is not a second to waste. Waste. No purpose. Carelessly giving time away. Every day. Have you learned anything? Probably not. Ego says. I thought I did. Who can I kid? No one. Just myself. Credulous. Once again. Down the rabbit hole. I spin, and I spin. Into this cycle. Whirling into another world. Where I give and I give. Nothing is returned. Not that I expect it. I’ve learned long ago that nothing should be. Expected. But here I twirl. Dizzier than ever. The mind is clouded. It makes me sick. Tit for tat. Nope. Never that. I don’t get it. Reciprocate. Do the same. Retaliate. Interchange. Soul swindlers. Empathy embezzlers. Purloining pretenders. Spirit siphoners. Greedily draining. Until nothing is left.
Endings almost always lead to beginnings. In my experience, it seems that way. There’s been a few times in my life where something ending has put me on a completely different path, leading me to brand new and often exciting experiences. Whether these endings came in the form of relationships, jobs, or even the deaths of loved ones, they transformed me as an individual in their own different ways. Each experience contributed to the web that is my life.
Tragedies and new beginnings are often interwoven like an intricate web of fibers bearing all different kinds of colors. Each color and each fiber represent a different aspect of life. Life has this way about it that can leave us confused, questioning everything, or really trying to find our purpose. Ironically, its counterpart, Death, leaves us wondering many of the same things.
Part of our purpose, I believe, is to learn and grow while we are here on earth. We cannot grasp new ideas and flourish if we do the same routine things every day of our life. That must be why we suffer tragedies and have pain and sorrow. It must be why, right? Without these tragedies would we truly be ourselves? Who would be? We become stronger and more resilient with each new beginning that is presented to us by a tragedy.
In my last post, I discussed grief and people who I’ve lost that have impacted my life tremendously. When thinking of them, there is someone who I lost that comes to mind specifically, and losing this person really was a catapult for me to enter into a new beginning. After experiencing such a devastating loss, I was transformed.
In a way, I entirely reshaped my existence and what I’ve done with my time. The tragedy was my catapult to start endless amounts of creation in the form of art and writing, and just simply living my life the exact and precise way that I wanted to; with absolutely nothing holding me back.
There is another time when a friend and I were on separate paths in life for about seven or eight years. We did not speak for the entire duration of those years. Something magical happened that suddenly brought us together, and from that tragedy (separation), we were able to start a new beginning. The fibers of our webs once again became intertwined, thus causing a new bond. New beginnings are quite possibly one of my favorite things. I even have a tattoo dedicated to such meaning. Similar to the balance of darkness and light, fortune and misfortune are opposite yet closely related. There is an awakening that happens with new beginnings, like the break of dawn after a long dark night. You cannot have one without the other. Maintaining balance is important.
There have been plenty of times where I’ve had a fresh start. One of the most recent situations I can recall where I’ve had to “start over” was after getting married in a rush, and then getting divorced. When I think of it now, it seems so ridiculous. The choice I made could be considered a mistake. However, if I did not choose to get married, and then go through a divorce, I would certainly not be where I am now. So like those little colorful fibers are woven into the web of my life, how could this be a mistake? The divorce led me to another new beginning and I’m now at a point in my life where I know exactly who I am mentally and spiritually, and exactly where I’m going. Gratitude for the entirety of the situation is a complete understatement of my feelings. Whereas, before, I was just kind of going through the motions of life and not exactly sure about anything. I was still learning how to be me. This tragedy that I suffered through, and the fact that I went through my own depression was absolutely worth it. I wouldn’t wish the pain on anyone, or the confusion, or just downright nastiness of what I’d experienced, but everything that has happened has made me such a better person than I was before.
Breathe. It will all work out in the end.
In my experience, when things don’t work out it is a sign that things are actually working out. It may sound kind of crazy or silly, but I promise it is true. Some doors are just meant to be closed, and that is okay. In one of my favorite books, by Icelandic author Gunnar Andri, something he said in the book has stood out in my mind for several years now. “When one door closes, another opens. And sometimes many of them open at the same time.” Correct! I do agree with him on this statement, as well as much of the wisdom inside of his book. (5/5 stars, I definitely recommend)
And when those doors do open, taking the opportunity to walk through them can seem frightening or challenging. The thing is, with a new start, you must not be afraid. Of course, being scared of change or doing something new is a natural human emotion. Humans don’t like change. It’s been proven. Sometimes though, change is exactly what we need. A new path is given to us at the worst time, which in reality often can be the best time. There have been so many positive things that have happened to me since my divorce or other designated tragedies, and I recall the feeling of starting new friendships and relationships with other people after these terrible situations happened. I’m happier than I’ve ever been and I truly do believe that if the tragedies didn’t happen, I really wouldn’t be on the path I am now. It’s an amazing feeling.
If you’re ever feeling like you are living in total despair, or you just simply can’t move on from a situation or a certain someone, I’m here to tell you that you certainly can. It’s absolutely possible. When your tragedy hits, surely there will be flowers that will bloom shortly after.
Things to Remember:
- Don’t be scared to end something
- Don’t be nervous about experiencing your own tragedy (It will make you stronger)
- Don’t be intimidated about trying something new
- Do try to meet new people, learn from them
- Change is a good thing sometimes
- Take every opportunity presented to you (It’s there for a reason)
- Find your balance between dark and light
- Remember that everything will work out in the end
- Tragedies and new beginnings are interwoven; everything is connected
New beginnings can be hard, and learning something new that you’ve never done before certainly can be a challenge. In the garden of your life, just make sure to tend to the flowers that bloom after the storm; not the weeds.