I work with some chatty people. Like, Chatty. At least once a day I fall down a tangent trail that started with a legitimate work question, how do you adjust a doctor’s diary, but ends up in a full on discussion of whether a good corn bread recipe has sugar in it (spoiler alert: it does). And for someone like me, who hasn’t met a person I can’t swap a story with (I was born to be a grandma, spinning tales), sometimes I get lost for the better part of half an hour, and I have to forcibly remove myself or I will spend my entire shift sharing anecdotes.
When I was 10, we had two TV’s with cable – one in the living room and one in my parent’s room. Between my brother’s Super Nintendo and my sister’s Food Network, I rarely got to watch it in the living room, so I commandeered my parent’s TV. My parents had a giant bed with 47 pillows and tons of blankets, and I had privacy – I flipped between Wishbone and MTV while writing stories about unicorns whose parents were ax murderers and no one bothered me.
And instantly, my first thought was, “man, 9 year old Audrey would think 32 year old Audrey is pretty lame.”
And then I thought, wait – 9 year old Audrey’s day during the school week consisted of
taking an hour to wake up in the morning
fiercely debating cutting her own bangs every morning
sneaking her mom’s coffee
taking too long to pick out clothes because she was too busy fantasising about clothes she didn’t have
going to school where she was equal parts I CAN DO THIS and help me I’m so overwhelmed
walking home through the woods so she could act out little stories running through her head
typing out said stories on her typewriter while listening to music; or making elaborate plans to do or build or create something; or drawing killer whales, researching killer whales, becoming a killer whale, basically engaging whatever I was obsessed with at the time
staying in the bath (never a shower – thanks Psycho) until the water turned cold
falling asleep while watching a movie
waking up to go to bed and reading books or comic strip collections until she passed out with the lights on
And I was all “that’s basically my same routine now.” So I’m basically living like my 9 year old self was watching. And my 9 year old self thinks I’m pretty rad – I mean, I can take showers without the fear of a cross dressing schizophrenic with PTSD stabbing me to death. I mean, I’m sure she’s disappointed that I’m not a marine biologist/killer whale trainer by day, novelist by night, actress and movie director on the weekends, married to Brad Pitt and living in a log cabin with a herd of dogs, but hey. You can only do so much in 23 years. Plus, now I can stay up late watching movies whenever I feel like it. Fuck yeah.