✍ CURRENTLY WRITING FROM: SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA
I don’t know how to get rid of these feelings that I feel, these feelings that give me heavy boots, but I’ve made them part of my life goal, and once I find how to get rid of them, I plan to write a book about it and sell-out on Oprah. One thing does help me feel better, though, and that is cleaning my room. I acquire this feeling of entitlement, accomplishment, and self-righteousness after I finish stacking the last book on the side of my wiped-clean closet on the floor of my recently-vacuumed room.
On this new “super girl” high I had, I took the opportunity to get homework done. “This is fantastic!” I thought. “I can do anything good! This homework is a piece of cake! I am going to graduate, not a valedictorian, but pleased with myself because I tried my hardest, and also, my life was not high-school-movie-cliche sucky! I am so happy right now!”
And I was. My desk was clean and I set my things on my desk. The sun was setting, so I opened up the window in front of my desk and listened to the children on my street play tag in the dark. I’ve mentioned it about five times already, but I love the fact that these kids on my street are always playing outside.
The wind was blowing softly. There was high-pitched laughter, but it was not shrilly. I lit my first ever Yankee Candle (I suggest that, if you’re a Yankee virgin like I was, you should videotape your reaction—I regret not videotaping mine) and didn’t want to put it out later that night. The wind blew the scent of Buttercream towards my face. I tackled the pros and the cons of America’s Golden Age and the Civil Rights movement. I wore a sweater that reminded me of a beach night with a boy I used to like. (I know this sounds like the set-up to a plot twist where something terrible is creeping up, about to ruin my night, but I don’t need to warn you, nothing terrible occurred.)
There were a few times where I listened in on the kids playing outside. They were telling jokes. One of them said one of my favorite puns, which is “I forgot how to throw a boomerang… then it came back to me.” None of the other kids got it, but I cackled loudly and obnoxiously to let this kid know that there is a teenager in dark clothing listening in to children playing outside in the night. And also, that joke never quite gets old.
I also have this habit of watching myself laugh. After I laughed, I looked at myself in the mirror smiling. Because of my braces, it has become impossible for me to smile without covering my mouth with my hand, but this time I grinned broadly at myself in the mirror and didn’t twist my face into that of disgust at my exposed gums and bulky orthodontia.
Last night was my favorite night. I loved myself the way I felt I should. I was unabashedly happy. I had salted mango. And I wrote in my journal again for the first time in two months.
Also, I’m growing fond of my smile again.