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FICTION FEEDBACK > Overthought / Not the Mama -- 900 WORDS TOTAL

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message 1: by Sam (new)

Sam | 3 comments Looking for some help with editing and sharpening these pieces. Hope you enjoy them!

message 2: by Sam (new)

Sam | 3 comments OverThought
500 words
Sipping on coffee this morning, Queen and David Bowie’s “Under Pressure” is all I hear in my mind as I stare blankly out the front window. Earworms are the worst kind of worms, I think. There’s no squishy feel to them and no earthy aroma because, well, they’re imaginary. I can tell it rained heavily again last night. Everything’s the color of thick mud. I look on to my driveway and mourn over the war zone that happened while I slept. They say that the early bird catches the worm but they never talk about how the early worm gets eaten alive.

While leaving my house, I have to daintily step over bits and pieces of real earthworm that lie scattered on the way to my car. Why are there no proverbs written about the sun-charred, mangled pieces of worm left over from the early bird’s feasting? Are they not an important part of the life cycle, too? The proverb should read “the body and blood of the worm nourishes the early bird.”

After dancing my way to my car, I get seated inside. I notice first how puffy my eyes look and think “This won’t do.” I quickly adjust my headscarf, dab on some liquid foundation, and reverse from my driveway. My little car sways from the brute force of the wind. It’s a cold day and the sun is trying desperately to wake up. I think even the trees cry with me during this season. The sun starts to hibernate and the sky becomes the color of cement. People talk about how lovely the fall colors are or how the cooler weather excites them into a pumpkin indulgent frenzy. All I see is death and decay. The bright yellow leaves litter the roads into the litany of a life’s cycle. The sky is an endless void of grey, sucking out the last bit of color left in the world. The air is more crisp, like it doesn’t have any energy left for nurturing. Shedding their tears, the trees look heavier than usual. I feel heavier than usual.

Along the way, I hear a few geese honking as my car paces with them. I think about how freeing it must be to fly, to travel by floating. I realize then that I’ve never craved wings to fly anywhere. I enjoy the view from the ground, where life finds a way. The earthworms have always thrived by burying themselves in what they love until it sacrifices its body. I think of the sacrifices I have made over the years and I wonder where my own decay gets recycled. What the earthworm never concerns itself with, is the fact that sustainable life depends on its decay. And why should the worm concern itself with its death? It is in that thought that I remember that life is meant to be enjoyed in the moment. Meanwhile, my overthinking, but still driving, mind narrowly misses hitting the squirrel attempting to cross the road.

message 3: by Sam (new)

Sam | 3 comments Not the Mama
400 words

Sitting on a toilet, I am staring at a yet another single dark pink line. These feelings that I have need a way to process out of me but the words to start, I do not possess. I could describe them to you in pale comparisons of sadness and guiltful relief for a while. Urine droplets run down the side of the sample container, which is actually just a tiny mason jar, and onto the counter. On fertile days, I could spare a bit of optimism. This is not the day for that.

Childbirth is supposed to be my god-given gift and my greatest burden to bare. No one mentioned having to grind out levels to conceive. Have sex on the green days. Take your vitamins daily. Achieve an orgasm in the right position, and wear fuzzy socks! Achievement unlocked, now you’ve got sperm-friendly lube! The end of this baby game is nowhere to be found.

Secretly, I am terrified that my soul’s only release will be to go in raw and rip my reproductive organs out in a fit of rage. Then use that rainbow of red hues as art supplies. “Why not me?” I sob. And yet, every month Hell chooses to greet me in that space between my thighs. Knocking down the walls my body had just so beautifully decorated, I feel my womb mourn for the connection of life. Just once.

The mirror is dirty. White spit speckles are scattered across this bloated version of myself. I feel as gross as the sink looks right now. I should probably clean up tomorrow. Today, I have given into defeat. In the passing year, I have given more of my body up to stress and hormones than I have to the betterment of humanity. Sometimes this looks like eating an entire bag of Funyuns in your car after a fertility clinic meeting. Other times it looks like playing video games for hours because you and your partner just don’t want to fucking talk or think about sex right now, ok?!

I splash my face with some water and dump the test in the trash. Where do I put these feelings? Like a Pigpen cloud of dust only emotionally heavier. The senses of longing and a lack of control linger. I wish I could offer you some encouraging words kid but I’ve got nothing time and blood on my hands. Someone’s gotta clean this bathroom anyway.

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