Y’all. I made a new friend. Oscar. It’s one of those friends I really didn’t want to befriend. Not at all. You know the ones. Maybe there’s something you just don’t vibe with. Or something you see in them. That maybe you also see in yourself. A part of yourself you don’t exactly like. Or the one that forces you to get uncomfortable. Feel uneasy even. But then you realize. There’s something good there. Something special. Maybe you do need to get a little uncomfortable. After all. Maybe you can learn something from them. Maybe even about yourself. So you accept the person. And suddenly. Your new friend. The one you were pushing away. Has now become your closest friend. That’s how it was with Oscar. My new friend. And guess what. He’s my mouth splint. Continue reading “My Friend Oscar”
This whole thing about the girl who listens. That girl. The one whom this blog was based. The one who currently has her mouth banded shut. For 22 hours a day. That girl. She’s a fraud. A fake. A lie. Because in the words of her mama, “she has not shut her flapping mouth.” Not since she was in the recovery room. Not since she was rolled into her hospital room. Not since she was wired for five days. Not once. And you know what. That girl is me. Continue reading ” The Pinch”
Y’all! I started crying again. And having anxiety. Fear even. In the shower. In the car. At night. In the morning. Right in the middle of the afternoon. It started as I sat in the lobby of the orthodontist. As I sat among hormones and pimples and parents. Waiting for braces. For the first time since I was 14. Me. Now almost 40. Impressions. Photographs. Radiology. Metal. All at the orthodontist. Great.
I’m a firecracker. A little explosive even. My mouth tends to get me in trouble. A lot. Historically speaking. I’d very much like to blame this on my parents. First my father who I believe gifted me with my combustible nature. And I do mean gifted. After all, I am able to use this burning flame to the benefit of myself and others. Sometimes. Then there’s my mother, nary a firecracker in her, but she did leave me in a hot car. In the Tampa heat. When I was just three years old. “Jesus Christ it’s hot in here,” my mother heard as she opened the car door after those (no more than) 20 seconds. Thus beginning the saga of my dramatic nature. My explosive mouth. The trouble to be had. Historically speaking.
I fell in love for a moment last night. At the county fair. I noticed him right as we walked up to the bumper cars. He stood tall with blonde, tousled hair that perfectly complemented his tan, taunt skin, and blue eyes that equally supported his sun-kissed vibe. When he glanced my way, they looked kind. His eyes. I’m sucker for kind eyes. I believe they reflect a kind soul. And I like kind souls. He let my daughter on the ride even though she was shy of the height requirement. I watched him as he kindly ushered our kids into a working car. The flashy silver one. The one my daughter most certainly would have chosen had her very boy friend not initially led her to the blue one. And then he walked over in our direction. Holding a red and a blue laminated card he asked, “which one is bigger?” The blue one we said. Most certainly the blue.
Today was a good day. I failed my state certification exam. Again. By one point. Again. There’s irony behind it. This is a written test. Like a sit down, look at a prompt, draft an outline, and write kind of assessment. Written. Y’all! I once won a state poetry contest. So what if it was in 1994. I even beat out my older sister who is a much better writer than I will ever be. I studied creative writing at Florida State University. I’ve written a 123-page thesis on homelessness. Homelessness. I’ve been a high school English teacher for 10 years. I do this every day. I write. Hell, I do this in my free time. I write. And yet, I can’t seem to pass this written test. But like I said, it was a good day. I failed the exam.
I met quite a character in the express lane at Publix the other day. That tends to happen when you walk around smiling and making eye contact with strangers. That tends to happen to me a lot. You should give it a try. I don’t always get smiles back. And many people avert their eyes in any other direction but mine. Yet I still keep doing it. Mostly for that person who looks right into my eyes and gives me a warm smile back. It’s like we’re saying to each other, “thanks for doing this hard thing called life with me today.” Life is hard. I enjoy making it a little more pleasant with eye contact and smiles.