The bottom of the bed bounces up and down; a little earthquake announcing a restless pup is convinced I’m long past good morning, and in need of a nudge. With a playful smirk, peeking with one eye open, she knows, I know she’s up to mischief. Pretending to yawn, my arm stretches overhead pulling the blankets over my face. Did she take the bait? My giggles warm a breathy patch of sheet layered over nose and mouth.
Within moments I’m on a trampoline, jostled, “Oomph!” A four legged ball of fur launches toward me. Her cold nose snuffs the sheet above my eyes. Unable to suffuse my laughter any longer I burst from the covers and tackle her in a playful hug. She happily settles beside me with her head lain over my stomach. I let the quiet settle around us for a few moments. How she recognizes what I need dumfounds me, but she does. Pup and woman alike, we master stillness.
“January is almost here,” I whisper.
Pickles perks up her head, ready to listen, waiting, but my melancholy silences any more complaints.
“You’re happier when you write,” his words echo from memory. Words are hard to come by right now, I argue silently. I can’t do this, just leave me be. The well wasn’t empty by a long shot; words hang in the balance, ready and willing to pour like a fount from me. My courage had temporarily plugged up the flow, like a stopper in a kitchen sink. Stupid skunk, over thinking every single nuance, worried to the point of defining me by…January…
An Anniversary creeps forward, closer and closer, day by day. My eyes squeeze shut tight as if that could slow time.
“You’ve been deaf for six years; it’s a date nothing more, nothing less…” With determination I throw back the covers and stomp around the bed. Pickles stands in the middle of the bed, head cocked, unsure what to do. I glance into those deep brown eyes and shrug my shoulders – lost myself.
“Where is the courage I possessed back then?” I ask burying my face into the scruff of fur at her neck. Haven’t I proven I’m more than this yet?” A tear cascades over sleep chaffed skin and I’m transported back to my former self, who wanted to give up because communication seemed near impossible. Fiercely wiping my pajama sleeve across my eyes, I scold, “Knock it off, coward. This is nothing, nothing compared to yesterday.” One sum – that’s the equivalent you’re allowed for your deafness, I vowed silently.
Whatever I fear will never be the sum of who I am as a person. Of course I’m afraid of succeeding or not, we all are in one form or another. You only fail or can rightfully be accused of cowardice if you DON’T try. I’m a writer and as long as the words flow, I’m going to continue to challenge my fears. This is small compared to what I’ve already accomplished. 2011 will be the writers year, my year.
My wish for you in the coming year: Conquer your fears – try, it’s all anyone can ask. You’ll find courage when you least expect it. It stares back at me, every day from a pair of deep brown eyes. See yourself through another’s eyes, you will be amazed.
Happy New Year!
Picture from here