Chapter Five: Grasping at straws and rearranging them

    I painted invisible circles with my left foot as I waited by the entrance to the group I was relieved to be no longer attending. After two days of enjoying my freedom before instituting the new routine of working and going to therapy, I was forced out the front door to get a job. I found my mind kept trailing back to adventuring around with Molly, which was so much more of a pleasant place than where my mind usually has been going. I wanted more distracted moments, more minutes where I felt something other than pain. 

    Before heading to the mall to acquire a job I went to the group building in hopes of catching Molly going in. I wanted to keep her in my life. But, the minutes were ticking by, and Molly wasn’t showing up. About twenty minutes after the group was supposed to start I decided she too was probably forced to do something different. The smell of snow hinted in the breeze. A sour, hopeless feeling started to sink in. Just as I was about to give in, Molly’s laughter tunneled through the parking lot. “Hey, what have you been sick or something?” She asked. Her bright red hair was plastered to her head by way of a gray beanie.

    “After the mall, my stepdad pulled me from the group.” I mumbled as my fingers pinched each other.

    “Ah, they didn’t want you hanging out with the messed up kids,” she laughed wisely at her words. “What the hell ya doing here then?”

    “I’m looking for you,” my words stumbled out of my mouth aimlessly.

    “Ah, that’s sweet. It did dawn on me that I never got your number or anything.”

    “Yeah,” I shifted, suddenly awkward. “I’m going to the mall to get a job wanna come with?” I asked surprised by my bravery.

    “Not only do I wanna come, I know exactly where you can find a job,” she squealed as she threaded her arm through mine. A waft of artificial strawberries and stale tobacco swelled around me, making me feel dizzy and worlds away from my usual reality.

    About twenty minute later Molly was leading me into The Angry Crow, a clothing and accessory store for the ones who would rather celebrate their favorite show on their shirt then wear polo shirts, in other words, my kind of store. Critter plush toys hung from the ceiling. Loud, heavily mixed music pulsed through the dimly lit store. The isles were barely existent, so it was nearly impossible not to bump into someone or something. As I followed Molly closely through the store, I realized how she almost two heads taller than me. Her collar bones protrude in a way that made her shoulders look perfectly poised. Her lips stretched out into a wide grin, “Malachi!”

    “Angel!” Malachi emerged from behind a large display of band posters. His red and black dreadlocks were balled up onto of his head. A large dragon tattoo climbed the side of his neck. His smiled was framed  by two pierced dimples. He gave Molly a quick hug then began to eye me.

    “This is my friend Elliot, are you still hiring?” Molly slid her long arm around my shoulders.

    “I do, but just one position girl. I just hired an old friend from out of town,” Malachi said this, extending his arm in the direction of guy around my age, maybe a little older, who clutched an armful of t-shirts.  His hair was such a dark brown it was nearly black. It hung around his face in tight curls. His dark eyes that looked at me from across the room. Without thinking about it, I waved.

    He nodded back with his blank expressions hanging and went back to the t-shirt display.

    “Well, I’m not looking, she is.” Molly brought her arm back to her side.

    Malachi eyed me up and down, “What’s your schedule needs?” He raised a pierced eyebrow with his question. 

    “I’m completely flexible in that regard,” I said, tuning into my heart beat rattling in my chest in almost perfect rhythm as the music played through the speakers overhead.

    “Excellent can you start on Monday, I need some to help opening.”

    “I’ll do it,” I nodded then shot Molly a smile, “Thanks,” I said to both of them.

    “Shall we celebrate?” Molly asked.

    “I can take my break now,” Malachi threw his hand to the side smiling. Excitement to work there began to parade up my legs.

    “Elliot you have any pot on you?” Molly asked me under her breath.

    “I always do,” I replied feeling far and safely removed from my usual crappy reality.

    “I know just the spot,” Malachi cheered.

    As the three of us pushed through the crowded store, Malachi called over to the boy with the curly hair, the friend from out of town.

    “Lincoln, I’ll be back in ten!”

    Lincoln nodded and said nothing. His eyes found mine which caused my knees to feel like they were constructed of jello—a feeling that continue to linger around in my legs even as we crouched behind the oversized mall dumpsters sharing one of strawberry-flavored paper joints.

    “Any weekend plans, good parties or anything?” Malachi’s words wrapped in thick smoke.

    “Nay, not yet,” Molly grumbled.

    The jelly leg feeling mixed with the sudden realization I had something cool to add here. I said, “My friend’s band is headlining a show on Saturday at the Lodi Legion.”

    Molly cocked her head as she handed me the joint, “Oh yeah? Are they good?”

    “Yeah, big in the local scene,” I said of course picturing Pete slaving over his journal of song lyrics. “Goat’s Gin.”

    “I know them. They are good. Very troubled.” Malachi laughed, “Which one is your friend?”

    “Pete,” I said smiling. “My best friend.”

    “Oh, he’s pretty,” Malachi said with his words wrapped in a laugh.

    “Oh yeah?” Molly’s mouth twisted is a curious smile.

    “I don’t know.”  I shrugged. “We’ve been friends since we were seven.” That is true, but I was also human and could see that Pete was attractive. My eyes fell closed as the thick, seductive smoke hung out in my lungs.

    “Oh he’s beautiful,” Malachi assured both of us. Their words faded into a background hum as my mind realized that a camera hung out in my pocket untouched all morning. A possibility of new routines and new people brought me more comfort than I could even begin to explain, but I definitely didn’t feel like the only broken person in the world, something I welcomed with full arms.

***

    I attempted to twist the knob and push open the door to Pete’s basement room but it refused to budge. Damn, I thought, it’s still locked. I balled my fist and knocked on the door. Matilda looked up me with her big brown saucers and wagged her tail.

    The lock clicked and the door opened. Pete was standing there without a shirt, holding a frozen steak against his face. “Sorry, forgot to unlock the door. Why did you bring Matilda, we are heading to the show soon.”

    “Thought I’d fit a walk in for her.” I stepped into his room soap and cologne mixed in the air. “What happened to your face?”

    “A fist punched it,” Pete growled, clearly not feeling like talking about it.

    “Is it bad?” I asked.

    “You tell me?” Pete lifted the steak off of his face revealing a patchwork of purple and blue lumps taking over his eye and some of his cheek.

    “Who did you fight with?” As soon as the words were out of my mouth, I realized the answer.

Anthony.

    “Was he saying things about me again?” I asked, suddenly sick to my stomach.

    “All lies.” Pete’s voice is eager to push past this while keeping me unharmed. “He looks much worse.” Pete’s glassy blue eyes studied me. He shrugged, still not wanting to get into it. “Do you think it will mess with pictures? Should I wear sunglasses?” Pete changed the subject as he scratched Matilda’s head.

    “Honestly, it made you look like a total badass.” I laughed.

    Pete eyed me, curiosity pouring from his stare, “Are you in a good mood?”

    “I’m not in a bad mood.”

    “What’s up?”

    “Found Molly and she helped me get a job at The Angry Crow.”

    “Nice.” Pete nodded, “this might be good for you.” He like me was waiting for Elliot to return. I think we both realized I would never quite be the same again. Life changes us, that’s how this whole growing up thing works, but I think we also knew I could be better than I am now.

“Do you get a discount?”

“Twenty percent, and yes you can use it.”

“I officially fully endorse this new chapter.” Pete tossed me a thumbs up with the hand not holding raw meat to his face.

    The sound of the door to upstairs squeaked open. My heart clenched in my chest as I watched Evie appear from her black and white canvas sneakers, to her jeans, until there she was from head to toe without my mother standing next to her. I felt sick and dizzy. I wanted to throw my arms around her and run in the opposite direction all at the same time. Certain smells or songs can take me to place when mom was alive in a safer and somewhat easier journey. But Evie was so close to her that every part of me burned in reaction.

    Evie’s brown eyes widened as she saw me. A mixture of sadness and uncertainty passed by her eyes.

    “Cute hair,” she said her voice washed over me.

    My mom’s voice reached into my mind, “Be nice. She cares about you.”

    I touched my turquoise waves with the tips of my finger, “Thanks,” I smiled.

    She smiled warmly back, in a way that came at me in pulsing waves, gradually breaking me into tiny pieces of glass. I wanted to close my eyes because I knew that mom would be clearly looking back at me. But, I refrained for two entirely valid reasons that showed themselves to me immediately. One, I tried not let people know I talked and saw my dead mother. And, two, due to fear it may completely destroy me.

    I couldn’t escape the idea of how close Pete’s body suddenly felt. Both of their eyes watched me so carefully I couldn’t help but feel like I was crazy.

    “I just talked to Glen,” Evie said keeping her tone light, “He told me you can spend the night. It’s better than you getting back to the house really late.”

    “What about Matilda?” I asked.

    “I’ll watch her. I picked up some food earlier.” Evie smiled. My stomach turned. The invitation for me to live with them popped in my head. They both wanted me there. Glen and Joan didn’t want me. But, truth was I didn’t want to be there either place. I was finding that I wanted to go somewhere that my mom’s absence wasn’t constantly staring me in the face.

    “Thanks.” I nodded.

    “We are taking off soon, mom,” Pete said.

    “Okay, have a good show.” Evie patted him on the shoulder, smiled at me before heading up the stairs.

    The moment the door closing reached us downstairs, Pete brought all of his attention to me. “Hey, it’ll be okay,” his soft voice was barely above a whisper. He reached out and pushed a chunk of hair behind my ear. The warmth from his hand shot through me. “Okay? It will.”

    I nodded back as allowed my eyes to close, allowed myself to see her.

Monday Rambles.

Today seems quite full, and my mind is still slow. The rain is consistently coming down brightening the green everywhere. Spring in the Pacific Northwest is what I’d imagine spring in Neverland would be like. Otherworldly and magical.
I get insanely nervous and nauseous before writing something I’ve been backtracking, something I’ve been planning- a feeling I experience often, and now with podcasting. Every time before I record an interview or even just myself talking. I get excited tingling in my feet and a large pit in my stomach.
I think this sort of nervous excitement is part of what makes life so special.
I have a lot in the works this week writing-wise. The author and comedian Kelly Wilson is on Too Many Words this week. The first five episodes of Elliot Granger and The Clueless Brigade Podcast will Air on Saturday.
Both the second book in the Ruby Dawson Saga ‘ The Immensely Power’ and my contemporary YA Novel now titled ‘Not Without Sunshine’ are in the editing phases. I just got back Not Without Sunshine’ and have some changes I’ll start implementing today. My piece ‘Mermaids in Neverland: Our Culture of Hate’ was published in Feminine Collective Saturday, so definitely check that out.
What’s your week looking like? How’s your Monday so far?
-Until next time!

-Jayme

Chapter Four: Seeking entrance to a place without pain

The inside of Molly’s car smelled like coconut suntan lotion and cigarette smoke. I quickly realized that once those initial smells sink in, there is then a hint of nachos. Plastic beads hung in a rainbow of color from the rear view mirror which wore a fuzzy pink leopard cover. Molly bent her lanky body over the steering wheel as she cranked the engine. “It hasn’t run right since it some chuckleheads stole it this summer. I parked behind Coco Bananas. Stupid. My dad’s gonna get me a new one when he comes back from China.”

“Why is he in China?” I mumbled out the questions as fumbled with the stubborn seatbelt that was sticky to the touch.

“Interesting you ask why he was there before when is he coming back.” Molly’s full lips twisted into a grin. 

“What about that is interesting?” I rubbed my fingers together trying to avoid the urge to ask my mom if she likes her. The problem with talking to the dead, is that once you start it becomes really hard to stop. The turquoise waves of my hair peeked at me from a corner of the side mirror.
“You wondered about the person instead of a new car. Everyone else I’ve told that story to are more curious about the car.” She slid on bright blue sunglasses, that when settled into position took up more than half of her face. Who the hell was this girl? I had never met anyone who had aroused so many questions.
“I don’t like cars. I’ve successfully avoided driving them so far.” My voice comes out clearer than it has in months, I hardly recognized the loose vowels.
“You don’t have your license?” Molly’s pursed her purple painted lips.
“Nope. Don’t want it.” I shook my head as I focused how relaxed my shoulders suddenly are.
“That’s silly.”
“The whole idea makes me nervous.”
“Freedom and uncertainty make a lot of people nervous.” She laughs to herself, then glances over to me nervously then shifts the car into reverse. She cast her eyes behind us.
I sat there silently as her words sunk into me.
“Gave you something to think about?” Molly said to me as she drove through the parking lot like her pants were on fire. I pressed my foot against the dirt encrusted Batman floor mats wishing I had the power to use the break pedal.
“Perhaps rabbit,” I muttered.
“Thanks for taking off with me,” she pushed out a heavy breath. “The few months have been total shit, so I don’t why I’m so surprised that Arron dumped me. Of course, my boyfriend would break up with me. The ass was only with me because I was a model.” She shakes her head at her own words. The car jerks to a stop. “Can you believe that he is already dating Crystal? Who by the way was one of my best friends. At least that is what I thought.”
“You were a model?”
“Yep. Dear mommy had me posing for pictures before I was out of the womb.”
“That’s intense.” I dug my finger tips into the leather interior as Molly accelerate to sixty the moment the light turned green. I was completely terrified, and I loved it. Somehow being scared was so much better than being sad.
“You’re telling me. If my mother’s goal was to make me completely out of touch with everything that makes someone functional she has certainly succeeded.”
She talked about her mom in ease, because Molly didn’t know me as the girl who’s mom died of cancer. I was just some girl who was stuck going to the same stupid group. We were both misguided and given up on. A sense of pride filled my legs.
I giggled as Molly continued to go on. “Make a note if you ever become a mom, don’t try to create a supermodel.”
“Okay, I’ll make a note.”
Molly pushed her sunglasses back, taking her red hair with them. Her eyes glanced at my from the side as she also kept some of her focus on the road. It took forever to get anywhere because there was a major traffic light every block, it felt like.
“Why did you stop?”
“I almost died from an eating disorder. My mom taught me home to puke on demand when I was twelve.”
“Oh shit.”
“Yep. I live with my aunt and uncle now.”
“I live with my step dad and his new wife.”
“Sucky adults really suck.”
I laughed out loud at this. “You smoke pot?” I asked. There was weight gone from the shoulder for the first time in entirely too long. It felt so freeing.
“Does a monkey like bananas?”
“Not all mokeys eat bananas.”
“Probably true, but doesn’t mean you don’t get my meaning.”
“I got it,” I mumbled back as I dug into my bag. “How do you feel about j rides?” I asked as I pulled out my small tin of pre-rolled joints. I learned how to roll joints for my mom. I took all her medical weed and rolled joints so she could have one whenever. When you watch someone you love slowly die, you want to do everything you possibly can do for that person while you can no matter how trivial. Time is precious. It’s a saying that is so over used the weight of the words are gone completely. But, the saying couldn’t be more right.
“I’m a subscriber,” Molly’s voice squeaked as she said this, which I remember that somehow cemented how awesome I thought she was.
“Cool beans,” I said as sparked one of the fatter joints.
“That’s my cue to get on the highway,” Molly said with her words wrapped in a laugh.
The wind rushed between small cracks in the windows. Molly turned up some screaming music. As the angst poured from her speakers, I leaned backed into the leather seat feeling  like a teenager for the first time in a long time. I had checked out of being a teen when I found out mom was dying. I wanted to completely cash in all the time I possibly could with her. I think now in a lot of ways having her as my only focus contributed to the destruction of me because everything I had was wrapped up in her needs and her comfort. If I could go back I would do it all the same. I knew I didn’t want to regret the time I didn’t spent with her.
Thick smoke filled my lungs, then slowly released.
“See, isn’t this better?” Molly asked, her voice time pitches higher and happier than it was the neglected parking lot.
“Oh yeah, not sure what the repercussions will be.”
“Nay, worry about that later.” Molly looked the joint carefully fro finger tips and brought it to her lips. Music, wind, and pot smoke surrounded me in padded bubble. My insides weren’t toxic. “So, I crashed out as a model and am forced to do the group. I just took my GED so maybe I’ll do junior college once I put myself back together again.”
“How long has it been since you stopped modeling?” My finger grazed hers as I retrieved the joint. Her blue painted fingernails made my bare nails seem plain and uninteresting.
“Four months since I almost died. One month since I’ve been out of the rehab place.”
“Rehab?”
“Long, weird story.” Molly coughs on an inhale. “So,” she continues to choke a little bit, then clears her voice, “So, why are you in a group?”
“I smoke pot and don’t go school. My guardians don’t know what to do with me. ” A pang of guilt for not mentioning mom puled at the tips of my toes.
“So neither of us belong there. We can start a list of things we have in common.”
“Deal.”
“Man, life sucks. I knew it did since I was five and my mom slapped me in the face for getting my dress dirty.”
“I found out a little later.” The lack of trees was hard t ignore. I think a lot of people are used to a lack of green and growth, but I can’t stop worry about my lack of oxygen I’m probably getting.
“Well, I think everyone finds out eventually.”
“Yeah, I’m beginning to think the same thing.” Heat tells me the paper is close to burning my finger tips. “It’s kicked.”
“There, drop it in the soda bottle.” Molly pointed her long, skinny finger at the bottle in the cup holder closest to me.
As I follow her directions Molly peals off the highway. The Garden State Squares, a mall that has accrued three additions in six years, and as of last November has a sixteen theater movie pavilion. In the eyes of anyone over the age of twelve thought it as the heart and pulse of Northern New Jersey. It was our watering hole. All the high schools in a twenty minute radius, spent time at The Squares, which made the entire area feel incredibly too small and incestuous. Everyone knew everyone, or at least that’s what I thought.
My head smacked against the headrest in reaction to Molly’s ripping into a space. A pleading male voice screamed the words, “I don’t know where to find me,” in her speakers as my stomach eased back into it’s rightful place.
“You are hard on those pedals,” I said almost laughing, which I remember thinking was amazing.
“Well, that’s why they are there right?” She asked as she climbed out of the oversized, highness and poorly treated SUV.
I followed closely behind her as we transversed the uneven pavement of the seemingly never-ending parking lot. The mall entrance was barely in sight. The harsh cold whipped against any exposed skin. By Thanksgiving it was painful to be outside.
As we hustled up the small staircase that passed through one of the eight parking garages, a set of large glass doors were framed by people I’d never seen before. Three girls all in black sat on small wall with a pile of bracelets and earrings in front of them. They all were completely focused on their horde and not at all on their surroundings.
“Best shoplifters around. They take orders too.” Molly said matter of factly, then pointed at four boys all with band t-shirts and jeans that were tighter than mine. “Great to hook up with, all of them.” Molly waved at them. A boy with blue hair and dark tan skin waved back. He winked at me. I could help but chuckle to myself. I felt as though Molly and I just walked into an entirely different world. A circle of boys stood to the left of the doors. They are knocking around a bright yellow hacky sack around. Another collection of unfamiliar faces clicked on their phones not taking note of anything of the world they were physically in.
“It’s been forever,” a female a little taller than Molly strolled up. She wore a long black trench coat and plaid pants underneath it. Black braids hung around her face resembling a lion mane.
“Yeah, well I can’t stand seeing certain people, ya know?” Molly shrugged, then found me with her eyes, “This my new favorite person, Elliot. Elliot this is my x twice removed, Tori.”
“One of many,” Tori’s lipped curled into a smirk. “Cool name.”
“Thanks.”
“Well, we are gonna head inside before my boobs fall off. Good seeing you. You look beautiful.” Molly smiled as she slid her arm around my shoulders.
We walked inside, instantly getting smacked by a strong mix of greasy food and over-priced fragrances. Molly let her arm drop to her side. My mind replayed her saying I was her new favorite person.
“Follow me, let’s go have some fun.” She pointed to a guy working at the taco stand, “I know where we can get some free food.”

***

My head was in such trance from free-taco-Sal, to all the stores we went in and out of, that I didn’t think about the possibility of the group calling the house when I didn’t show up. Of course, they would. This annoying realization slapped me in the face the moment I walked through the overly nice door when I saw Glen. His expression was the closest I’ve seen to resembling fire. It was funny to think how Molly and I were just talking about there would be no way they’d know because we timed it perfect.
Stupid.
“Where the hell were you?” Glen scowled when he demanded the answer.
Brian and Matilda ran in from the living room. “Don’t worry I took care of Tilly.”
“Thanks bud. That’s a cute name for her.” I wrapped my arm around his small body.
He smiled up at me.
“Elliot.” Glen’s voice trembled.
“My friend broke up with her boyfriend and she asked me to go to the mall with her.” I kept my voice stable.
“That’s it?” Glen’s anger seem to defuse. “What friend?”
“Molly. I met her at group.” I felt a smirk begin to beg for an appearance, but I had to fight it. Smiling at Glen always made him angrier.
“Great! She’s making friends with drug addicts,” Joan walked into he room. Amelia’s yogurt-covered face was turned up into a severe frown. Her little hands clutched onto Joan’s shirt.
“Well, you send me there, what do you think’s gonna happen?” Joan made my head hurt. I hated everything she stood for and everything she did. What kind of person helps to cheat on someone’s dying wife.
My stomach started to clench. The light and fearless feeling I had with Molly began to fade away.
“She has a point.” Glen said, no longer fuming. “You can’t just bum around the mall all day, though. That’s not going to get you any where.”
“How is that group for drug addicts going to help me?”
“The point was to help you kick the pot you are smoking,” Joan wined.
“That’s now how that works,” I shook my head annoyed that she was even pretending to parent me.
“No more group. There’s a new plan.” Glen said this looking at Joan and not me.
“What is it?” Joan and I asked in unison.
“Two choices. Either go back to school, or job and therapy”
Joan throw her free hand up and walked out of them room.
“I’ll get a job,” I said as I thought, at the mall.

***

I was reorganizing my photos for the third time that month, both family pictures and pictures of strangers I’ve collected over the past year. I rarely took pictures of objects but thought about picking it up. The sounds of the rest of house were completely hidden behind headphones I wore. I found that if I listen to music loud enough, it felt like I was somewhere else.
A message popped up in the corner of the screen. Pete’s profile picture of his head in a beer box always made me chuckle, it doesn’t matter that I’ve seen it a hundred times.

Pete: How was group?
I smiled and typed. Didn’t go. Made a new friend. She’s crazy, but I think you’ll like her.
Pete: Is she a drug addict?
Me: No, an ex-model.
Pete: Is anyone at the group a drug addict?
Me: Oh, yes definitely.
Pete: Are you grounded? You can’t get grounded. I need you at the show.
Me: You need me to take pictures.
Pete: No, I also need you. You are my good luck charm. Who the hell needs a habit foot what I’ve got you.
I couldn’t help put feel like I’d had just been wrapped in a warm blanket. Pete always made me feel safe. That’s the idea of best friends, right? Comfort is a benefit.
Pete: You should invite her to the show.
Me: I have to find out her number. Glen pulled me out of the group.
Pete: No shit? What is your next torture.
Me: Get a job, and try therapy again.
Pete: That’s not terrible. You should come back to school.
Me: I can’t Pete.
Pete: I miss you at school.
Me: I miss you.
Pete: Wanna come over and watch River Kids Force. I just downloaded season six.
Me: Will you feed me?
Pete: Of course.
Me: Can I bring Matilda?
Pete: Works for me.
Me: Unlock the back door for me.
Pete: You are gonna have to walk through the front door of my house at some point.
Me: Pete.
Pete: Okay.
Me: See you in ten.
Pete: Nice!
I turned off the monitor screen and leaned back in my chair. The wooden spools dug into my spine. My shoulders felt fighter. My chest didn’t hurt as much as it had been. My eyes gently closed as my day sunk into me.
Matilda’s cold nose touched my hand. I opened my eyes to look at her and saw the ends of my mom’s strawberry blonde hair floating behind the curtains. The weight was back. My stomached turned. And, just like it all came back. For the first time, I didn’t want to think about mom I just wanted to be happy, or I even settled for not in pain.
“Let’s go for a walk Matilda,” I cooed at her.
She stood up and wagged her tail. I patted my leg as I made a desperate flea for the hallway. It’s possible staying in motions helps.

Copyright 2016 Jayme Beddingfield

*Note: This is a work of fiction. Any resemblance to anyone is entirely coincidental.

The first five episodes of Elliot Granger & The Clueless Brigade will be on iTunes & Stitcher 4/30!

Elliot Podcast cover

Dreams, Fantasy, and Aliens with Rebecca Clark

https://soundcloud.com/jayme-beddingfield/e6-dreams-fantasy-and-aliens-with-rebecca-clark

What’s up guys?

I’m excited to share Episode 6 this week. Rebecca and I had a great talk about writing, life, motherhood, inspirations, and the things that make us, us.

Enjoy the show, and let me know what you think!

Thanks!

Jayme

A quick rant.

Sometimes I feel like everything I see is fuzzy. My scenes. My characters. Even my goals.

It’s hard to start working in the afternoon, but I’m doing it. I can’t be totally on every day, even though I wish I could. Like, really. The multitasking brain can certainly add to an overall hectic environment. It’s crazy when you think about how much perspective can actually control—now, that’s a deadly superpower in the wrong hands.

I’m having trouble not adding more projects. Between you and me I’m barely handling what I’m doing. Well, actually I’m pretty much rocking it. I’m so passionate about this, about what I’m doing—as we all know passion can be all encompassing.

Back to the balance. So far, I’m calling this a weird but a weird week.

Weird, now that’s an overused word.

Well, keep it short tonight. I have a long night of work after a busy day in the sun, attempting my best hat to enjoy the kids while they are home.

Look for Episode 6 of Too Many Words tomorrow. I have author Rebecca Clark on, and it is a good chat. Good times.

Well, until next time.

-Jayme

Migrating Podcasts & Outlining Stories

Sometimes my mind thinks too many thoughts at once, and when that happens, my chest starts to tighten up. Honestly, I’ve come a long way with my anxiety and have it much more under control than I used to, but there are moments when everything just feels too loud and too unorganized.

I rely on routines so heavily, that when my time gets thrown off, I feel totally bent out of shape.

This week is spring break from my kids, and I am attempting to adventure with them from morning until 3 and then switch to working mode while my husband handles the ship. Today is the first day rocking that way. I had snuck a little work task or three in during breakfast and then went and baked under the sun with kids and Bilbo. (I hope I get to a place with all three dogs where I can have them all out at the park at once) Anything worth it takes work.

Anyway, I didn’t quite put enough time between adventuring and working. I chose to start with the awful task of switching hosts for my podcast. Soundcloud isn’t working for me, or more importantly other hosts take advantage of everything iTunes has to offer, whereas Soundcloud is barely doing the trick. So, that’s what I’m doing.

Tinkering is part this gig, I know. I’m always trying to figure out a character or a site. I love it, but sometimes I just get really overwhelmed when I’m looking at information and trying to apply how I’m going to use it. I’m asking myself over and over in my head, “Migrate podcast, is that what I want to do?” Then, I did more reading. Different opinions started to cloud my motives. My chest started to tighten. My thought went to the fact this new routine isn’t going to work.

Well, this isn’t exactly a good way to get in the creative mood. I go to extremes with conclusions. I think this partly because I’m extremely hard on myself, but also, I’m working so hard that all my amps are maxed out. I’m hitting it hard; that is where I am in my career. Something needs to be adjusted; I came to the conclusion ( with help) last week that I needed to make sure I took time when I needed it. My family needs my focus too. I’m applying some new checklists within myself, making sure I’m managing things will balance.

It’s going okay.

Spring break is a testing that. I had a moment around 4 pm where I was close to having a tantrum, but I started writing this blog post while my feed migrates from Soundcloud to Blubrry.
Well, that it for now.
I have to some things to outline and others to draft. Stay tuned in for updates at the end of the week, as well as the fourth chapter of Elliot Granger & The Clueless Brigade. I have YA fantasy author. Rebecca Clark on Too Many Words the week.
Remember to click on the contest tab and enter to win a copy of The Highly Capable.

Until next time. Wish me luck, I’ll send some your way as well. Let’s have a good week.

I’m hoping my husband make chili dogs for dinner.