We’ve got a talent show at church tonight, so I REALLY ought to be sleeping — my rendition of Big Daddy Weave’s “I Am Redeemed” is gonna come awful early hehe — but between unsavory dreams and a wife that steals the covers, I’m too wide awake to sleep.
I tried. Honestly I did. But my eyes popped open at 0313 — at least, that’s what the clock “seemed” to say through the goo of night time crusties that hadn’t solidified yet — and after the obligatory water break, I found myself lying in bed, first staring into blackness, then Candy Crushing, then examining my eyelids for holes again, but to no avail. No matter how I waited, sleep simply would not come. So here I am.
The dream that woke me is kinda indicative of that pointless waiting. I dreamed that I was ticking away at my computer, chatting with someone while Mary Facebooked on the bed behind me. The kids kept running in and out of the room, sneaking kisses here and there in between the tattle tales. I don’t recall who I was chatting with, but I do remember that everything seemed peaceful. Strange, applying that term to my household, but there it is.
As the dream went on, time drew near for the kids to go to bed. We prayed, sang a song, and I sent them off, them kinda fading into the background. Mary kinda grew nondistinct too. It seemed that everything narrowed to that chat bubble on my computer screen. It became clear that it was actually MARY on the other side of that chat bubble, and it felt like something was wrong… but not.
Long story short, I was dying, and chatting with Mary from the other side of the veil that separates life from spirit. And we were coming to the end of our conversation, which is what the wrong feeling was.
So as I tossed and turned, trying to get back to sleep, that scene kept replaying in my head over and over, and the sense that rode like an undercurrent beneath the peacefulness of the dream crept to the surface. I still haven’t sussed out “exactly” what I was telling myself in this dream, but one thing seems pretty clear to me — this is what I’ve been doing to myself over the past few weeks.
Ever since getting the news from my doctor that I’m going to have to have open heart surgery for a valve replacement, I’ve been operating under the stark reality that I might die on the table (as my “break” from writing and my recent blogs can attest). Though the surgery has become standard, and as a 96% survivability rate, my pessimism begs my current motto — “Somebody has to make up that other 4%.” Sure, I may say it with a smile, but inside I’m seething.
Mary can tell you. She’s been having to put up with me.
I don’t want to think like that anymore. I don’t want to silently worry with a smile on my face and a quick joke on my tongue, pointlessly waiting for a surgery that could very well prove what a FOOL I’ve been for worrying, and for putting my family through my endless bouts of dark comedy. No, I’m no less a pessimist now on this side of my dream as I was prior to it, but I can choose not to let it define me.
And this is something that’s been coming for a few weeks now. I had good intentions, posting blogs as legacies to my kids, but I found that pre-planning my written observations — looking for things to blog about in life, rather than simply letting my observations MOVE me to blog — only muddled the process. I still want to leave my kids a Jeremy 101, but it’s kinda like my approach to writing fiction: it has to be spontaneous. It has to have a life of its own — coming THROUGH me rather than coming FROM me — or I can’t do it.
I’ve been thinking about Fractures for a few weeks now — not constantly, mind you, but off and on. Ya know, just wondering where my characters are and what they’re up to. I had a bout of “just in case” about two weeks ago, where I planned to write a short synopsis of what happens in Fractures, Prism, and Soul Taker. I told myself that the synopsis was to remind me of what I want to do in the story — a glorified outline, if you will — but no, it was a “just in case”.
I set out to give only the briefest overview. It wound up being 5500 words, pouring out of me over the course of four hours.
Every day since then, my break from writing has seemed more and more pointless — like waiting around to die on a table that MOST LIKELY WILL NOT kill me. Each day I pack my backpack for work, I look over at my laptop, sitting unused, and I find it harder and harder to justify this “break”.
I go back on Day Shift tomorrow morning. I’m pretty sure my laptop will be coming to work with me. I’ll still probably write my blogs to the kids, and maybe a letter or two to Mary, but I’ve been on hold long enough. I’m through the worry — or, at least, as through it as I CAN be. October’s coming fast, with our Disney trip on the first week, and my follow-up cardiologist appointment (read “the date setting”) just a few days after we get back. I got too much living left to do to be worrying about when — or if — I’m gonna die.
Besides, the Highest is just as evil as he’s ever been, the Cause is just as worthy, and Sal’s still stuck on Te’ra. They need me 😉