Dear Catie, I’m writing again and here’s a shameless plug.

Sorry I’ve been scarce. A lot has happened, and I’m thankful for our phone calls as of late to keep me from drowning. It’s all good things, and eventually, even better things. In the mean while, I’ve still been writing, and in addition to that, my fellow-author-to-be cousin and I have created a website called WHAT THE PROMPT? in order to spark out writing style. For me, it’s great. I get to create on an outlet that is not my main novel, but I don’t have to stand around for hours for roleplay chances – which used to be my old outlet. Anyway, check it out. Love you, and here’s my first response to the very first prompt:

 

“Let’s pretend the year is currently 1995, and you’re still the current age you are now. You’ve fallen asleep, and you didn’t wake up until 20 years later. It’s now 2015. You’ve missed everything in your 20-year-slumber. Write what happens next.”

-WHAT THE PROMPT?

There are three certain ways to wake up from a good nap. The first one is waking up with an acute awareness, alert as if someone just blew a bugle to remind you your work shift started twenty minutes ago and you missed the alarm. The second is not as panicked. It’s relaxed, but not to the point that you feel you can’t manage to move a limb. You twist as you pop this joint and stretch that muscle. A smile creeps on your lips, a kiss from the sun peeking through your window shades. It’s time to get up, but take your time. Today is a gift.

The third way is so crippling that it’s almost as if you never fell asleep at all. You wake up with more exhaustion tugging at your shoulders. Your eyelids protest the signals from your brain, concerned that you haven’t opened them yet to find that, in fact, your nap lasted much longer than it needed to, and it wasn’t for the better.

This time is the third, and it wasn’t hours late that I woke up.

After what feels like five minutes, i split the shade over my eyes and find myself in the closet I had fallen asleep in. For some reason, I cannot remember why it was that I went to the closet in the first place, or why I had decided it’s floor would be any aid to fatigue I must have felt; the worsened condition I felt now.

I lift my hand, a finger digging at the crust that formed in the corners of my eyelids. Out of habit, I lick the tip of my index finger and begin rubbing underneath my eyes, just in case mascara has made a smudgy home there as it’s want to do. My eyes begin to focus and I can see wrinkles on the back of my hands that weren’t there before. Good lord, I’ve become my mother – not over night – but in a matter of a nap.

I push this thought from my head and rise from the ground on wobbly knees and uneasy ankles, parts of my body that aren’t sure if they can bear the weight of the rest of me so quickly after their rest. My hand clutches the pole that holds empty hangers, all white. There are no clothes on them, nor on the floor where I am certain to keep my dirty laundry despite the overpriced woven basket hamper from Home Goods. The floor beneath my bare toes feels damp, as if recently shampooed. How hadn’t I noticed that before?

I open the door slowly, disgruntled as the light showers me from the darkness of the small, dark room. There are no blinds, no curtains. There is no furniture in what should be my well-worn bedroom. The walls are no longer adorned by painted sunflowers on a dull green backdrop from Lowes. My eyes scan the corner for the stain of coffee that fell from my bed years ago and wasn’t retrieved until last month, when I remembered it had happened at all. The carpet? It was the same color, the same texture, but the stain was gone.

I didn’t realize I had been holding my breath until I’d opened three more doors: my bathroom, the hallway, and the room to my littlest sister. All remarkably cleaned and remodeled. All notably… empty.

Adrenaline met with the panic that filled my throat, disabling my subconscious ability to breathe. Where had everyone gone? My lungs pumped with oxygen at such a quick rate, I forgot to exhale. I was a balloon, expanding until my head began to ring dizzy. I opened my mouth to call out but only a whisper escaped, “Is anyone there?”

No reply.

I fought the urge to buckle at the knees, to cry out. There was an explanation for this, there had to be. Seek it out. Keep your shit together. It’s just a puzzle. More than likely, a dream. With this newfound determination, I descended the stairs. The banister had been replaced and what had once been carpet covering were now fresh planks of wood stained in a red color that reminded me of bitter wine. More empty rooms. The kitchen to my right was hardly recognizable and had been walled up where an open bar once stood. I don’t bother searching any more rooms on my way to the front door. My assumption is that they are all as empty as I felt. The front door is locked from the inside, and I struggle to pull the deadbolt in the other direction before I hear a successful ‘click’.

I pull the door towards me and open Pandora’s box.

Dear Catie, About those New Year Resolution things…

I’m am so awful about them. It’s probably the perfectionist / completionist whore in me that feels utter failure when something isn’t done 100%, but that’s how I feel every year when I don’t do something. Example:

Miranda wants to drink NO SODAS. Miranda lasts 31 days and drinks a soda. Miranda doesn’t try harder the next day, because she’s already fucked up and therefor is not perfect, why bother.

This is bad, and I know it’s bad. It’s also probably the reason I haven’t lost weight yet. “I worked out so hard the other day, and here I am eating a Whataburger!… LOLNOPE ON THE WEIGHTLOSS THING.”

But, for you my dear, I will make a list because it’s good to have goals and strive for something, and with your help, even when I inevitably fail sometimes, you can help remind me that I can keep going without the perfection and the world will, believe it or not, still turn.

Miranda’s New Year Resolutions
  1. Apologize only when I regret. This one if a big deal to me because, as you know Catie, up until a few months ago I would apologize for every little thing. Bumping someone’s shoulder on pure accident, not having a clean house when friends would come over despite the fact that I have no time and a child to raise, being too poor to afford things like ‘going out every night’, or for hurting someone’s feelings unintentionally because they took what I said or wrote the completely wrong direction in which it was meant and didn’t give me the benefit of the doubt. Yeah, fuck that. No more. I spent a month with a counselor this past semester at school and she suggested that to help with all the guilt I felt all the time that made me not want to be in this world, I should realize what it is I feel guilt for and why. And if it was for dumb things like the examples above, then I shouldn’t let it make me feel guilty. Instead, I should base every apology I want to make on this sound question: “Do I regret not cleaning the house instead of playing with my son? Do I regret having no money instead of being home to raise my child and use more time to focus on school? Do I regret saying or writing something because someone’s head is too far up their own ass to realize what I’ve been writing? No? Okay, no apology needed.” Works for me.
  2. Be positive. I know my last paragraph seemed a little catty. Maybe it was. I’ve gone from depressed, innocent, crying, pathetic Miranda and turned in to confident, empowered, motivated Miranda… with a side of catty when people try to pull the old shit on me (and took advantage of how compassionate I really am when I care.) You know the types and people. Anyhow, I want to make sure my catty doesn’t become a side-effect and hurt people more than it does make them laugh. And more importantly, I need to remember that everything is in perspective, and with a positive one, I can get more shit done.
  3. No more sodas. God, I will miss Dr. Pepper. I should make ONE exception rule: On Holidays, I can have up to two. TWO. God, they are so bad for you, though.
  4. No more fast food. I would like to note that this does not include healthier places like Panera Bread in which I get the healthiest, tastiest, over-priced shit. But it is the best.
  5. Plan ahead on school work. Last semester, in almost every class, I was given my assignments ahead of time on a schedule. I had ample opportunities to get my things done way before the end of term, and not taking advantage of this really hurt my grades in some classes. This semester, I am taking 14 hours. This includes an online course (Art Appreciation. Easy enough.), a physical education course (Yoga. Yay! Forced Physical Health!), a language course (More Spanish. All the time.), a history course (God, help me), and a creative writing class. The latter three are going to be heavy in things to learn, and I really don’t have time or money to slack off. It’s go time. Take advantage of all my opportunities school-related, go go go!
  6. Write for 30 minutes, every day. Whether it’s this blog, a diary, role play, a short story.. Anything to keep my mind going and keep up the pace I want to set to write that next great American piece of literature!
  7. Work out. I’m really bad that this one. I really am. When I am working out, I am like ‘fuck yeah this feels great’. Before the work out, I am like ‘what excuse can I come up with to keep me from having to spend an hour at the gym.’ I don’t know why. I need to reroute my brain’s pattern of thinking on this one, but I truly don’t know how to yet. So, I’m going to put work out, because it sounds better than ‘lose X lbs’ when I can’t even focus on the working out part just yet. Maybe in June, I can give you a number. For now, I just want to make working out a routine thing. With Yoga being every Tuesday and Thursday at 4:30, and classes (near my gym) every M-Th, I am hoping I can stop by the gym on the way home every day (4 days of 7, if not also on weekends) and do some work. That is, also while keeping my homework under check.
  8. Flesh out one of the many ideas I have for a book, and write a plot line. You know me. I have a million ideas, and they are all half-assed and never finished. I need to pick one and just run with it. Run it in to the ground. Then I need to write it out as much as I can. Then I need to put it away for 3 months and come back to it with a clear head and write some more, and edit. I also need to figure out how to even get published. Hmm.
  9. God, God, God. If anything, the biggest thing that happened to me last year was finally breaking the barrier where I wanted so bad to believe in God, but he seemed so much like a fairy tale that I couldn’t. When I finally broke that barrier.. It’s magical. To save you guys who may not give a damn about religion, or Christians, some time, I will just tell you that… it’s a big deal. And I’d love to get more involved with Him and our relationship because the more I do, the better things seem to get for me and mine.
  10. Complete at least two of these resolutions. It doesn’t count if I complete one, and then this one is the second and therefor 2/10 are done. That’s cheating.
Hope you liked my resolutions, Catie. Tried just for you.
Hey! It would be super awesome if you could explain Juicing to me sometime. I don’t even know what it is, but people won’t shut up about it. Is it good? Bad? Weight loss related? I don’t speak Japanese. 
Just do a nutrition post in general. Or both. Give it all to me, now!
Miranda

P.S. After your last post, my head is the size of Jupiter’s moon, Miranda. Thank you.