I’ve been seeing so many people from my past lately—I mean the past past, hazy-rocketing back to elementary school and working up from there—and it’s affected my dreaming. I have hosted reunions in my dream homes, welcoming total strangers to parties in which I wail about a lack of canapes and not being able to find a shirt to cover my bra, In-Her-Black-Bra hostess, searching for familiar faces, not finding many. Yep:
N i g h t m a r e s.
No, I didn’t have a thriving social school-world. There were beautiful pockets of Blossoming PB, until I hit high school, which I left as soon as I legally could—took that GED, shot straight into community college, had the time of my life, then on to university for more thrills and then: Grad school and all its crazy-yet-satisfying foibles. Schooling before college? Well—perhaps those years comprise SEVERAL NOVELS. One novel, anyway, already written. The others now hover in my Creative-Ether-Inbox.
I have found room for more—more novels about adolescent seaside upbringings replete with a world-dominating, domestic dysfunction that includes: Raging sidekicks of divorced parentalia, disco dancing during the daytime, nude beaches, Greek tycoons (the type that dump divorced mothers of 4), the necessity of surfer t-shirts and some rather historical and bizarre chills.
And, as last weekend I munched Denny’s nachos with old school chums after a night of Fiesta dancing and dive bars I plan to never, EVER revisit, I realized the key to my unwritten characters, to those germsy ideas embedding themselves in my brain, is that people do change—whether they know it or not, and if they don’t know that they’ve changed after 25-something years—well! There’s some drama in there…In that. Oh ho! Insert italicized exclamation points here. Or—not.
Here’s to growth. Here’s to change. Here’s to recognizing the then from the now. In a good way. Of course.