As usual, I woke early and made my way to the coffee machine, which sits on my stove, and waits for me with a loving blue light. The blue light is a signal; it means all I have to do is place a cartridge in the machine, place a cup beneath the spout, and then I press the button to hear a rumbling, gurgling sound of coffee genius.
The cold weather did not affect my house. And though the windows in my back room tend to be drafty, I felt comfortable in my chair. I sat down in front of my trusty keyboard. Then I moved the mouse to switch on my computer. I leaned back and looked through the blinds to watch the sky change from night into morning.
I noticed the layers of snow, which froze on the rooftop of my neighbor’s house. This allowed the white surface to seem crystalized, and glisten beneath the streetlamps, until the sunrise made its debut.
In the silence of early hours, and in the company of no one else but my cup of coffee and the fish tank behind me, I listened to the gurgling water falling into the tank, and enjoyed the calmness.
Through my window, I could see naked branches of tall trees reaching into the sky, and like hard black vines, they fingered the belly of gray clouds.
Slowly, the holiday lights subside and the nearby homes return to their normal faces. The holidays are over. Last year is closed and this year begins its trip around the sun.
I do not feel as I did this time last year. My concerns are different and so are my questions. But in the moment, pressing issues seem as if they will always be pressing. And perhaps they will be….but everything evolves.
My relationships at work have changed. Some of the bosses left; some were fired, some moved on, and some are still around, and they continue to influence with intimidation.
The bills I thought I could never pay have been paid. Some of them were paid in installments, and others are being cut down, on piece at a time.
I saw an old boss of mine the other day. He was out of work and heading to an interview.
He asked, “Are you still working?”
He told me, “You better keep it that way.”
Then he explained. “It’s tough out there.”
When I worked for him, he barely spoke to me. And when he did, he was seldom kind. He once told me, “You will never be in a position like mine.”
He said, “You talk too much and you don’t know how to handle people.”
I wondered if he saw the irony in this….
He asked, “You still trying to be a writer?”
“I’m still writing, if that’s what you mean.”
My old boss smiled, “It’s good to see you, Ben.”
Then he shook my hand, which, he never did before.
I saw this conversation as a lesson…
Just because someone tells me “You’ll never be,” doesn’t mean I should to listen.
And just because someone tells me, “You’ll never make it,” doesn’t mean I have to give up.
There are two things I want to be this year: consistent and persistent.
And so long as I am, I firmly believe that everything will fall into place