What Happy Is

Walking up, she knows my coffee “Aren’t you happy it’s Friday?”

Writing late, when edits are finally ready, his voice mails.

When I know I can.

Like-minded individuals.

The Weeknd; the singer and the ending of a busy week. If you haven’t heard this guy, go jump.

A clean living room, never mind the rest of the house.  Sweet Sleep. Chirping. My puppy’s nose.

Someone genuinely asking how are you?

 “Stop looking for the floor to cave—everything’s ok” ~My best friend

She Think I’m Soft ‘Cause I Write Nonfiction

I plan for the worst. Hope for the best. I fret. There’s always a time limit. When the time runs out, I kickbox or I run. When I was a little girl, my Dad used to walk into our family room on  Saturday mornings–maybe seven am-ish, and I’d be playing mystery computer games.

I played this one called “The Legend of Kyrandia.” I actually wouldn’t sleep until I figured out the next puzzle, lest I’d sooner fall out across the keyboard. It was a mesh between trying to figure out what it was that unlocked some secret magical door, and what it was that left you worse off than you were before. The trees would grow oversized spiraling roots and tentacles like octupuses—grabbing like flytraps. It was magical realism, animated. I actually wanted to figure out why so-and-so got stoned and how I might be able to un-stone him.

It was almost as if my imagination took over and became the video-story. To this day, I refuse to watch scary movies. Watching scary movies is a surefire preventative measure for me getting any sleep. I suffer from night terrors, not as bad as incessant snoring, yet still horrific. I do not kid, it’s pretty fantastic.

Early on, I learned to keep myself comfortable, busy. I learned how to juggle laundry between basketball practices for my son, spinach onion tomato omelettes, school work, cleaning, conference calls, grocery shopping, making up bed,  proposals, quotes, fashion shows, writing deadlines, and masterful ad-libs and emergencies via magicianship galore. No blinking.

I’ve gotten to a place where I’ve realized I have to trust in someone else to reach my fullest potential. It’s called delegating. The concept is the same as my hairstylist hiring help to wash and condition my hair while she styles other clients; then later, she’ll finish by pressing, primping, and styling me. This way she reaches everyone. This works in the same way corporate organizations have hierarchy levels. This is the same way problems often take more than one brainchild to compute.

When I initially started this quick write I felt a twinge of sadness that I’d been programmed in this worrisome way. That my loads of responsibilities and experiences were so heavy and that I was in dire need of a vacation from myself. Would I even know how to take one? I’ve gone to to New York a few times. Mostly for business, once for fun and I didn’t have any. I realized one of the places I most admire I’ve been many times and yet never actually seen. Being this way has always been a survival mechanism for me. Being driven is a way of life and those that have it, have it, and those that don’t—you can sooner expect them to never have it.

I have to juggle the balance between not letting my happiness depend on the things I may lose, and trusting others to represent me well.

Often, I’m hard-pressed to tell people I write nonfiction. Why? Because my writing experience includes fashion writing and editing work. Because publishing work/seeking representation, and re-writing takes time. Time, I tend to not have much of, because I’m busy writing and working. I was at a gig that had a lot of Press folks not too long ago. I was with a friend of mine and I had to say those fatal words.

“I write nonfiction.” Her eyes hit the floor and went wayward.

Obviously she’s only read fiction, that—or writing wasn’t a profession she respected all that much. She turned away nonchalantly and started talking to some other people behind her.

“O, she think I’m soft ’cause I write nonfiction???” I exclaimed to my friend, puffing out my shoulders and poking out my lips. At this point he’s laughing hysterically.

“Just watch, one o’ these days my nonfiction is gonna blow her whole shit up”

“Let’s go before you make any more threats to the innocent via your yet to be published work” he mumbled at me.

She has no idea but her character would definitely be dead if I ever write magical realism. Death by the herculean keyboard and my irritant craving for a red velvet cupcake.

May the odds be ever never in her flavor.  Happily better after. The End.

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