Letter Writing

Dear ‘Friends Who I Didn’t Get Back To’

A heaviness has come over my brain, a sort of fuzziness, if you will. If we could sit down together, I might be able to tell you about it. It doesn’t have to be this way that we carry on in older decorums and spill our hearts over coffee. We could sit on the lightly damp grass when the sky is a cloudy slate over us and talk about out lives. It doesn’t have to be this way.

On some days, my back aches the first thing in the morning. I try to remediate this pain with the subscription yoga classes I accidentally bought on an app. I paid a lot of money for a 1-year subscription and you know me, I don’t plan that far ahead. In these days, it would be even foolish to do so! But it was an accident: two button clicks and my money was gone. I tried to get it back, but to no avail. Now, I am stuck with one year’s worth of premium yoga content and meditation classes. Some of these yoga classes are shot near the beach. Who would have thought? With these recurring back pains, I used to worry that I would develop a spinal cord issue. Now I replace those worries with a nothingness that is inching close to resignation. It’s hard to keep the worry-wheel going for so long. Trust me, I have tried.

I have seen the pictures you sent me, read the words you’ve written, and probably watched the vidoes on mute. Thank you for thinking of me. It really means a lot. It’s a cyclical process of me thinking I could do better with communication each day. I think about this as I stand and wait for the water on the stove to heat up every morning. It usually depends on how the day goes, how much work I have to polish off, and if I have not been attacked by someone at work that day. What can I say, it has not been great. Imagine, we could have all died, but we didn’t, and yet, our lives look almost the same as two years ago. We had a real opportunity to turn things around for humanity, and we didn’t seize the chance with the kind of unbridled enthusiam that we should have. I feel that world leaders could have decided to do better, but they just kept calm and carried on. Now, we still sit behind our work devices and wonder what kind of a spinal cord issue we could have. That reminds me, all of us must get health insurance, friends. A health insurance outside of work and obviously, if we can afford it. In the past year, I’ve seen too many people spending too much money they don’t have to get themselves a fighting chance in this world. Call your healthcare provider, today.

How are you doing? Is it okay where you are? Have you had your vaccine shot(s)? Are things okay in your family? Do you think after we are able to resume physical lives we will still be in touch? Some of you, I’ve never seen in my life, and yet, my world is richer for it. Above all, are you okay, friend?

I cannot decide if I should continue reading Native by Sayed Kashua, the free novel I downloaded for awareness on the Palestine issue. Maybe I have had enough of consuming content about injustice no matter how dark and funny it may seem on the surface. In a different world, maybe I would have finished the novel by now. In a different world, these injustices would be happening elsewhere and I would be torn about them but still be able to wear gorgeous foundation and go to office in my new pair of heels. But everything is too close for comfort now. Like I said, we had a real shot at fixing the world and putting it the right side up. I have a copy of (another) Terry Pratchett novel with a flaming orange book cover that I have hidden in my bookcase because I am somehow uncomfortable with it. Why would I be uncomfortable with a book cover, you ask? I don’t know. I don’t care to figure it out. I have too much fear now. It sits in the spaces between my bones and underneath my nails. Which reminds me, my nails are breaking at an alarming rate. I am currently researching Biotin multivitamins.

I’m tired of sitting, you know? I’m so bloody fed up with sitting in one place. (Yes, I have an unlimited yoga class subscription, why do you ask?) There’s only so much movement I get up to. Some days, I have dizzy spells and I don’t even know what they’re for? Am I dizzy because of low iron, the speed at which this planet is hurtling towards the sun, or my screen time? We will never know. But I honestly cannot sit much anymore. It’s bothering me, but I still sit down coz of the dizzy spells and because what else is there to do? There are tons of vessels to wash, I’d give you that. It’s almost like they magically reappear once you’ve cleaned a sink full of them. The universe is an unrelenting sink piled with used vessels. We are washing our way out of it.

My cousin sister’s father passed away yesterday. He was detected with Covid pneumonia four weeks ago. While watching her do hospital runs, talk to the doctor, and manage all the logistics, I was so proud of her, but also heartbroken for her. I was reminded of my own days at the hospital two years ago. All of us know someone who has lost someone this last year. Is this how we were supposed to live this life out? I know the answer to this one: No, we were not.

I might have some exciting plant news to share with you in a couple of weeks. I still have my fingers crossed because you know, pish posh, yada yada, bing bong, what do we know is gonna happen, even? So let’s just wait this out. I never fully appreciated the phrase Insha Allah. I always thought it was a way to avoid taking on a responsibility, but I stand corrected now. Nothing is more accurate than that phrase in these times. I honestly didn’t need to learn this phrase in such a hard way. It could have been easier, don’t you think?

If you’ve written to me, and I haven’t responded, I apologise. But I assure you, I have a reputation for getting back. I always do. For now, this. If you would like to write back, you know where to find me.

Stay safe, it’s a big bad world out there.

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