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Better now

She moved home, even if only for a few months, along with everything she owned, minus the old TV and cabinet she sold on her second trip to empty out her old apartment. The $40 she got from the new tenant paid for her gas on the drive home.

She accumulated a lot of junk in four years. Clothes mostly, photos in frames, shoes – oh my god, so many shoes. Then there was the detritus that she didn’t think about until she had to move it. Cleaning supplies, pots and pans, dishes and souvenir cups she simply couldn’t part with, not yet that is.

The family yard sale did little to make a dent in all that stuff. At least it was enough to clear a path from her bedroom door to the bed. There was still the whole summer before she would be moving again, plenty of time to decide what to keep and what to trash.

Until then it’s back to work at the local tourist trap. The pay is good. She can make enough in three months to live off for the next nine, if she’s frugal. That shouldn’t be difficult since she’s moving to a new town, in a new state where she knows no one and knows nothing about what to do there for fun. It’s a good day’s drive from her childhood home, not the easy two hours it had been, where she had dozens of friends and so many regular hang outs.

Mom offered to help go through her clothes with her. Culling out old things she’ll never wear again. Making plans to turn old event T-shirts into a quilt. She might have enough for two quilts – one from high school and another from her college days. She didn’t want a soccer camp logo from 9th grade along side a pub crawl tee from senior year.

Even with the extra effort needed to thin out her belongings, there’s been talk of adding a Crock Pot, coffeemaker and a bigger George Foreman Grill. A new mattress will have to be bought too. Great-grandpa’s handcraved bed won’t survive the move. The desk and bookcase can go, but that monstrous armoire stays. That won’t be moved until a she establishes a permanent residence. They aren’t even sure they can get it out of her room. It went in, there must be a way out.

She and her dad have been debating the merits of apartment versus house rental. He points out the benefits of not having to maintain a yard, and having someone else responsible for building upkeep. She counters that if she can find roommates they can share the maintenance duties and rent would be much cheaper. The deliberations continue.

Plans are being made to take a couple of road trips later in the summer. Giving her and her parents a chance to scope out the town, see what there is to do outside of classes, and check out the housing situation. She hopes to find out who the other masters’ candidates are in her select program. Maybe she can convince them to rent a house together, if they turn out to be good roommate material. She’s had her share of sketchy roommates, she wants to avoid that again if she can.

There’s a thinly veiled atmosphere of fear. Fear of actually moving out, not only away from her family, but all her closest friends. Most of them headed in different directions toward their own lives. This step toward independence is also a step away from all that is familiar. But lurking in the shadows, waiting to take its place, is a feeling of excitement.

She has a unique opportunity. A chance few people get. A chance to reinvent herself. To be what and who she wants. No anticipation, no expectations, no obligations. To start over in a new place, a new person… to be who she defines herself to be and not who everyone else wants her to be.

Better Now

Oh I’m newly calibrated
All shiny and clean
I’m your recent adaptation
Time to redefine me

Let the word out I’ve got to get out
Oh I’m feeling better now
Break the news out I’ve got to get out
Oh I’m feeling better now

Oh I’m happy as Christmas
All wrapped to be seen
I’m your recent acquisition
Time to celebrate me

Let the word out I’ve got to get out
Oh I’m feeling better now
Break the news out I’ve got to get out
Oh I’m feeling better now

The world’s done shaking
The world’s done shaking
The world’s done shaking me down

The world’s done shaking
The world’s done shaking
The world’s done shaking me down

~ Collective Soul. “Youth.” El Music Group, 2004.

This post is my answer to the Indie Ink Writing Challenge. My prompt came from Miranda at My Eclectic Book: “Pull your favorite song up on your MP3 player (or whatever music player you have) Now use that as an inspirational turning point for one of your characters. Describe why it meant so much

My challenge went out to Sunshine at [Awesome Title Here]: “During renovations of an old house, you find a worn, leather belt hidden within a wall… how and why did it get left there?”

* This fall my daughter will move away from home, probably, hopefully for the final time. She plans to attend grad school in town three states and 650 miles away. She’s both apprehensive and enthusiastic about her move north, excited about her courses, and about her new adventure. She’s also looking forward to discovering more about who she is.

9 thoughts on “Better now Leave a comment

  1. So excited for her!!! FYI – she gets too lonesome for family she can always come for a visit here – I might even cook for her LOL

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