Echoes of a Transformed Life

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A Personal Chronicle Through Music, Love, and Web Portals

This entry comes from the 41st entry of my effort to write at least 1,000 words a day consecutively. I call it the #1KPerDay challenge, and if that hashtag is already taken, oh well. My wife told me I should post this. Having edited it quite thoroughly, I agree that at this point, why not share this with you all. It’s probably the best thing I’ve written since Easternmost. Enjoy.

#1Kperday part 41

Happy birthday to the lovely, talented, and perhaps slightly wacky Audra Miller. She’s 22 today. They grow up so fast, don’t they? While I’m not a fan of the direction she, Matt, and Sam have taken their band Concrete Castles, likely greatly influenced by label input, their talent is definitely still developing. And they are living the dream, getting to do what they love, rather than be stuck in university wasting away the best years of their youth, like I did. Now I’m old and of a certain age. Where’s my cane so I can shake it at all of these cocky and hyperactive members of Gen Z to simmer down?

Last night was yet another one where sleep and I couldn’t agree on a time and place. I’m somewhere between strategizing to build an efficient card and comic collection buying workflow and overthinking absolutely everything like I always do. Buy what you love, the experts always say. But I can’t buy Audra, and I already have love and stability. Happiness is fleeting, but I’m blessed to be where I am right now, as the world falls down. Thank the stars Bowie didn’t have to be here to see everyone actually attempting to put out fires with gasoline.

My real dilemma right now is purpose. I was right to tell Tom to stick with the lesbian discord group she’s in. She’s getting something out of it. But as I always say about the internet, so much is superficial, and you can’t rely on it to give you real purpose or true substance. That issue goes well beyond the internet, of course. People run up that hill and shout from the summit that they’ve reached the land of milk and honey; but it’s really just the parking lot of crushed soda cans and perverted dreams. That is a bizarre and spontaneous metaphor, but it reads even better than it sounded in my head.

Now that the fog is clearing around my peripheral vision, mentally and figuratively, I seem to be able to express myself a bit more fluidly today. I’ve been reconnecting with some of my lost innocence, even if only superficially. Superficiality seems to be a theme today, not only for Tom and I, but the society at large. Positivity is mostly of the surface level variety. There’s not much to be happy about with the state of the union, and it grows more tenuous with each passing hour. Yet there is much for us all to be grateful for, even as the Great Mother punishes us for our ignorance of her true wrath for defiling her gifts and misusing the resources she has so openly provided for our selfish little hands to put to waste.

The fact that we even exist here in this wondrous, chaotic, and terrible universe is worthy of awe and worship. We don’t need a framework built around a god box to appreciate all of this beauty around us. It can be brutal, yes, and quite cruel at times. But even now, in times of natural disaster and man made wanton destruction, the cycle of life surges on. The seasons still come and go, even as the almanac fails to distinguish where they truly begin and end anymore, and the weather defies the understanding of even the most careful and dedicated scholars.

I’m not entirely certain where my journal entry is going today. What I do know is that I must complete my salvage operation of yet another failed web portal. My efforts to create compelling resources for certain satellite niche interests of mine are not going to be wasted by seemingly supernatural voodoo and dark magic cursing and obscuring our connections to the outside world. 

I’m pleased that the few pieces that Tom was able to salvage herself are already getting significant attention and real interaction, even if, again, it’s primarily superficial. It’s something worth celebrating. There is finally progress. I won’t run an hourly marathon with my remaining pieces that are ready to go, and I’m unsure what to do with some of the hastily constructed pieces I threw together to form a few topic silos in my now failed niche pursuit. But I’m no longer as dejected about obscure curiosities being left to be reabsorbed by the fickle beastly nature of the digital maelstrom. I did my best and it never took shape; it suffered mightily in its short life as a formless void that a few wandering souls happened upon, only to abandon soon after to the ravages of silent ignominy. 

I must remember what I have been telling myself since twenty-twenty. (Yes I spell it out and hyphenate that Year of Our Imaginary Lord now.) It now appears to have become a cliche, although clearly not ubiquitous enough in a world bursting with underachievers and whiners. That is, to aim to get one percent better every day. These fractional amounts seem impossible to quantify. But I am easily 200 percent or so better than I was when I began this year. My personal progress since the pandemic has appeared to rise meteorically and fall precipitously without warning. But I believe that despite the confused flow chart of my thought process, the line graph plotting at severe angles, I have achieved the goal I set as a young child. I’m not a square, I’m a triangle. My points are sharp and stabby.

I’m not sure how to end this entry. But I will attempt to do so with that advice from Jami Attenberg that has stuck with me over this past month and an odd number of days. When you don’t know what to write, complete the thought: I am here because… 

I’m here because I decided to walk away from the shambles that was my old life. I put all of my mottled and rejected eggs all in one basket, and gave them to one who appreciated their odd, but tantalizing promise. Tom and I saved each other. We keep on doing it each day. Unlike so many relationships that are give and take, touch and go, we just give each other a little bit, then give a little bit more. We’re much better people than we were before July of the Pandemic. In some ways we are more isolated from the world in general than ever, almost entirely detached from the people and places we once knew. But we built a new home for ourselves in our exile from the madness; the pandemic that arose from a pervasive virus has bred another even worse sort of plague mentally, emotionally, spiritually, and even physically for the vast majority of folks we encounter. Yet, somehow, as things get progressively worse, her and I somehow manage to get a little bit better, even if only by fractions of percentage points, each day. 

~ Amelia

Amelia Desertsong is a former content marketing specialist turned essayist and creative nonfiction author. She writes articles on many niche hobbies and obscure curiosities, pretty much whatever tickles her fancy.

One thought on “Echoes of a Transformed Life

  1. This is one of your most amazing pieces! I’m so happy that you took my advice and published it after reading it to me this morning! I love you so much!


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