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"Look. There's something I really want to tell you. I should have told you before. I was just ... scared... of how you'd react..."
"Promise me you won't hate me."
"I won't hate you."
"I went back on my antidepressants. It's been two months now."
"Are you ok?"
"How could you not tell me that?"
"...I ... thought it was more my business, than yours?"
"How could it NOT be relevant, that you're on mind-altering medication?! My god. As your boyfriend you didn't think I deserved to know you're taking something that's messing with your mind?"
"...I thought you'd understand."
The great thing about 100words is that I can say whatever I want to say. It can be as real or as fanciful as I like. Truth be told, I'm not very good at writing fancifully. My best writing tends to come from my experiences. I've experienced both good and bad things, as have most people.
Please know, if you reading my posts, that at this point in my life I am extremely happy. I haven't always been, and I like to write about that too.
I hope something I write resonates with someone out there.
Also, I'm half-mermaid.
And lo, unto the deserving will be bequeathed two sausage dogs. They will be the most beautiful sausage dogs in all the land. They will have long, golden locks, and wanton, floppy ears. Wise men will wander from far and wide to gaze upon their beauty.
They will also have legs as long as cocktail sticks and noses as astute as a person recovering from a cold. And they will howl to the moon when a person/animal/leaf dares to invade their guarded territory.
But they will be beautiful.
"And so they shall be named: Boadicea and Schnitzel."
6.30am was not an acceptable time to get up.
To be fair, I knew that when I set the alarm. Having not risen before 10am all summer, 6.30 was always going to be a bit ambitious.
"Oh you little joker!" My body chastised me, as it sought for the warm cocoon beneath the duvet. "Bless you, thinking you could do this!" Snooze button stabbed blindly, arm flailing wildly.
My body starts to panic. "Now? Really?! Actually? Oh come on..... just 10 minutes more! What?! Noooooooooooooo!"
Am I the only one who objects to this torture?
How did I manage to become this far behind on my entries? I think there's a good chance I'm actually *doing things* in my actual, physical life. That is a definite possibility.
Here's an interesting question: is that a bad thing? Am I neglecting my writing in favour of less worthy, less permanent, activities? Is the commitment I made when signing up to 100words something I should honour and try to stick to -- is it good for me, or will it cause me more stress?
Am I living correctly or incorrectly?
Or am I just...living?
Today I met my children. Not my biological children. The children I will have the pleasure/misfortune of teaching for some weeks this academic year.
They are lovely. They are small and cute and dressed in freshly-pressed uniforms: "Feel how soft the inside of my jumper is!" "Erm...i'm sure it's very soft!" *safeguarding panic*
There were tears over having the wrong folder colour. Hannah proudly showed me her chipped tooth "I fell off my scooter - there was blood EVERYWHERE!" and Clayton vomited with nerves.
If I could describe why I want to teach... please see above.
Have you ever been so tired your brain ceases to function?
Like... you are kind of willing it to switch on, but you can see the 'low battery' warning flashing up before your eyes, and it won't go away no matter how much you blink?
I can't make conversation. My housemate asked me a question about 10 minutes ago - "Am I hungry?" I'm still trying to decipher the phonemes.
Thank god i've done everything I need to do today. At least, it doesn't matter if I haven't, I can't remember.
So...why is it that now, I can't sleep?
"Are you alright?"
"But you just said you're not alright?"
"Because i'm not."
"So...what's the matter?"
"Nothing is the matter. I am perfectly fine."
"Look, you just said..."
"I didn't say anything was the matter! I said i'm not alright!"
"But then you need to tell me what's up!"
*looks up* "The sky?"
"...Seriously?! What is your problem?"
"I don't have a problem! Why do you keep asking me things like that?"
"I just want to know if you're alright!!"
"I think it's pretty obvious that i'm not!"
"Well, duh - I'm half left."
What does a birthday really mean anyway?
You're not a year older. You're a few hours older than you were a few hours ago.
Some birthdays are legal milestones. But most aren't.
Your birthday means nothing to most people. The world carries on. You still have to go to work, or school.
What did you actually do to deserve presents or cards... grow a few more greys?
What did you actually do to deserve a party? Successfully wake up one more morning?
To me, a birthday is a reminder to tell someone how glad you are they are alive.
Today was sunday.
Today it rained.
Today we woke up late and missed the morning.
Today I was too tired to go go-karting.
Today I felt guilty from indulging too much yesterday.
Today things hurt that didn't usually.
He had to leave today.
Today was sunday.
Today it rained.
Today we woke up late and cuddled away the morning.
Today the light drizzle in my face on the beach woke me up.
Today I didn't 'indulge', I 'enjoyed'.
Today we found other things that didn't hurt.
I will be seeing him really, really soon.
It's about finding the diamonds.
Word Penguin Day is 25 April. Did you know that?
The smallest kind of penguin is a Little Blue penguin, standing only 16 inches tall.
A penguin's colouring is all about camouflage; their black backs blend in with the murky ocean, and their white fronts merge with the bright surface.
Emperor penguins are the only species that can cope with the Antarctic winter on land. They have 100 feathers per square inch, which helps.
Unlike other birds, penguins have dense bones - to make diving easier, hence they can't fly.
Penguins are pretty fascinating. I guess that's why he suggested them.
Today, following a lack of inspiration, I delved deep into my laptop and rediscovered some MSN "nicknames". I hope you will find them as enlightening as my teenage self did.
* If at first you don't succeed, skydiving is not for you.
* On the other hand, you have different fingers.
* If you believe everything is possible, try to slam a revolving door.
* Silence is golden, but shouting is FUN.
* Be a minimalist, it's the least you can do.
* If at first you do succeed, try not to look astonished.
* Just because you're not paranoid doesn't mean they're not after you.
How would you solve:
29 + 31 ?
Would you start with 29 and add 30 (59), then add the 1?
Maybe pretend the 29 is 30, add 31, and then subtract 1?
Maybe you round them both (one up, one down) and balance it out?
Maybe you add the 9 and the 1, and then the 20 and the 30?
Perhaps you imagine the 1 from the 31 hopping over to make them both to 30?
Do you imagine a number line, and see it in leapfrogs?
Do you imagine a scales, and see it as balancing?
Maths is so subjective.
It turns out I have super strength.
I didn't know this until recently, when I tried walking upstairs and I used the banister to help me (#beers), when, incredibly, the banister came away in my hand.
With a distinct fear of having to pay for said banister, I placed it back very carefully, in EXACTLY the position I found it in.
Unfortunately, said banister was re-discovered the following morning (#dayafter). It was at a significantly steeper angle than all of its surrounding banisters.
Nevertheless, I endeavour to further hone my skill... can it be used for good?
"Hey. How's it going?"
"Yea, alright. How's your day been?"
"It's been good! Tiring, but good! I feel like I learned a lot."
"That's great news!"
"Yea. Kids, ay?"
"Right! I couldn't do what you do."
"You'd be a fantastic teacher."
"Thanks, but I think i'll stick to what I do."
"So what did you do today?"
"Oh, you know, not much. I played some piano. I did some reading. I thought about you."
"I thought about you too."
"Yes. Things kept reminding me of you."
"Like this 100words I wrote earlier..."
Somewhere in the euphoria of my post-uni "real life" gap year, did I forget the soul-destroying nature of academia.
I felt confident about this course. I know I can write, I know a bit about teaching. Fuck, i'm even passionate about it.
But ... none of that matters when it comes to writing an academic essay. It turns out my opinion is irrelevant unless Tom, Dick and Harry (PhD) agree.
I'm not writing an insightful, thought-provoking analysis. I'm scrounging for obscure research that bears some resemblance to the assignment brief.
At least the bibliography will be beautiful.
Times are changing.
I am scared.
I am anxious.
I am not ready.
Life is piling up.
He seems further away.
I feel tight.
I feel alone.
I am helpless.
I'm drowning in expectations.
I'm tired and I need a rest.
I just want to be happy.
But I can do this.
I've got strategies.
I've got support.
People are there for me.
He's not that far away.
He's there for me.
He is constant.
I am reassured by him.
I am stronger than I feel.
I will get through.
I will climb this mountain and skydive from its peak.
I need to catch up on 100words. Instead of panicking about the fact I have 7 days to catch up on, though, I have decided to write today's, then go and have dinner.
Because 100words is not about stress. It's not about commitment or forcing myself to write, or feeling obliged to.
I mean, who am I kidding? No one is actually reading these anyway (apart from you; you know who you are, and I am eternally grateful).
No. I won't stress over 100words, because it is my release.
I will write when I want to. When I need to.
I have a cold.
Don't get me wrong, it's not flu or anything. Not even man flu.
But still, I am feeling quite sorry for myself. You know the feeling? When your head is heavy and a bit achy and you can't decide if you're hot or cold?
My nose is stuffy and my throat hurts and I'm going through tissues at the speed of light.
I am tired and grumpy and I can't taste anything. And all I want to do is curl up in bed.
But I have approximately 14 more items to do today. Can sleep wait?
You are clever, you are kind.
You know your own mind.
You're not me.
You are pretty, you are thin.
You own the room you're in.
You're not me.
You remember what you read.
You take less than you need.
You're not me.
You are organised, you're on time.
Your feedback always shines.
You're not me.
Your eyes are chocolate brown,
And you smile more than you frown.
You're not me.
You choose water over wine,
And your cooking is sublime.
You're not me.
You are everything i'm not.
But I'm stuck with what I've got.
I am me.
I always base my life philosophies and judgements about fate on tv sitcoms. Today, someone introduced me to this from How I Met Your Mother:
The olive theory is a theory in which if one person in a relationship loves olives, and the other hates olives, the two are meant to be.
I like olives.
He hates olives.
I quite like that when we get a charcuterie platter I get all the olives. I never thought about this more deeply. Maybe our choice of platter means something about how he is opening up his insecurities to me?
Would you ever follow someone down the street?
Would you stick a post-it note saying 'like' on a cute dog in the park?
Would you hold up a sign saying your relationship status or the sex you're interested in?
Would you ask someone on the street if you could poke them?
Would you pose suggestively in front of strangers?
Would you bitch about your job in front of anyone?
Would you leave your front door wide open?
I wouldn't. But how many of those things am I doing online?
How many of those things are our children doing?
"What am I doing?"
"You're studying to be a teacher."
"Yes. Why am I doing that?"
"You didn't get into theatre management."
"You're scared of blood, so that counted out medicine."
"You can't write more than 100 words at a time, so writing's out of the question."
"I guess you're right..."
"And academia... I mean, did you see your post on the 16th?"
"...that's a good point."
"Archaeology is muddy..."
"Hmm. I don't really like mud."
"And you'll never make a living from acting."
"I wouldn't want to do adverts."
"So... you're learning to teach."
Shut your eyes. I'm going to give you something. Tell me what it feels like.
- It's... round. It's smooth. It has pointy ends.
- It has texture. It has pockmarks. It's ... not really round... more curved.. it's like an oval.
Ok, now smell it. What does it smell like?
- It smells...fresh...zesty. It smells sharp.
And what does it taste like?
-Um.. it tastes bitter! And waxy. And sour. Biting.
What does it look like?
-What? I don't know! I've got my eyes shut!
Are you really telling me you need to use your eyes?
Unlike some previous posts this months, I wanted to write today.
I don't really have anything to write about, but I wanted to write anyway.
Because... I can tell you anything when I write. I can be who I am, or be someone else. I can make you laugh. I might be able to make you cry. I want to make you think.
Most of all though, I want you to know what I think, what I feel, and what I believe.
I want to teach a child to write. Because a child who can write can believe.
I don't want to give up on her.
Is this even for her anymore?
But I can't give up. There must be something I can do.
I'm begging her, "Let me help you!"
She's looking at me like a deer caught in headlights. She thinks she's helpless.
But she's not. I know it. I know we can get there.
What is her barrier? How can I cross it, if I don't know what it is? Why can't she tell me?
She's lost - adrift at sea.
But I've got a lifeboat. And I'm getting closer and closer.
Why would it ever occur to you to pluck a leaf off your shoe and put it on my bedside table?
You were two feet from the window. Four from the bin.
My bedside table was not the answer.
Your thought process intrigues me. Why not the floor? That was just as reachable. And that seems like a more appropriate place for a leaf that had come off your shoe.
Yet you put it, in pride of place, next to my book on the bedside table.
I will never know why. It's just another mystery of you.
I like my hair.
Not everyone likes their hair. Not everyone has the luxury of having hair to like. Some like not having hair. Not everyone feels the same way about hair. I'm just saying - I like mine.
It makes me feel good about myself.
It compliments my eyes.
Touching it comforts me.
It doesn't always do what I want it to, but I'm always glad it's there.
Even if I try to cut it off, it always comes back. It knows I need it there really.
...God, what a menial post about hair! What was I thinking?
Sometimes I confuse my feelings with yours, to the point where I don't know where mine end and yours begin.
You've had a bad day. So my day has plummeted.
You're sad. So I can't eat, or sit, or think for the pain.
You're ecstatic. And I want to be there, to share that with you.
You're overwhelmed. And I want to be there, to make it better.
You're strong, and I feel invincible.
You're weak, and I feel helpless.
You're absent, and I am lost.
I love you. It is a blessing and a curse.
When I was a child, I would look at the trees and the leaves and the buildings and the sky and be utterly convinced that they couldn't be real.
They were too perfect. Too well formed. Too green and too bright, to rough and too hard. There was no possibility that these things were real.
Of course, I realised that they were.
And yet, I'm back to those thoughts again. Except this time, it's not because they're too perfect. It's because they pale and shrink in comparison to you.
You're real, and the rest of the world a stage.
The Tip Jar