Thank you, and goodbye
You chided me. Said I spent too much time on that “shitty app”. What did you call it? “like Twitter and Facebook for wannabe writers”? That is was nothing more than a social media dumpster fire, “full of drama” and for “mediocre talent”. You called me naïve and too quick to join the “clique”. You regarded my interaction with other writers with utter disgust and jealousy.
Your words stung. I’m not sure if it hurt more because of coming from a lifelong friend, or from a fellow writer I had always respected. You being both, it certainly hurt. But this is not the reason for my email. I want to let you know I am leaving everything behind in order to focus on my writing.
First, I want to tell you ‘thank you’. Thank you for fortifying my suspicion that I may indeed have a story within worth telling. Without your disparaging words regarding my talent and social habits, I may have never taken this drastic step of cutting ties and pursuing seclusion. Your harsh words have ignited a fire in me to write like I never have before. Thank you.
Second, goodbye. Do not reply to this email. You will not hear from me again. I am excited for life’s upcoming chapters; I feel they will be some of my best yet. Our friendship is now a mere footnote of regret in a book forever shelved. Be well.
Wannabe writer no more,
Off To The Woods
To whoever this may concern,
Life is short. And if I had continued lingering on my unsatisfactory, perpetual workdays and the weekends, which passed me by like a meteor, far in the night skies, quick and barely perceivable, I'm afraid I might transform into some lost spirit post my death, haunting old houses and creepy, dark woods. And I don't plan on being a nuisance after my death, which would only contribute to my mumbling paternal grandfather's distasteful prediction that I would be a massive waste of time and effort, given a chance. Also, I would be eternally grateful if you could hold back your irritable impulses to retrieve and establish me back into my mundane, tiresome, unimaginative life that I used to charter. Because if my calculations are not altered by any unexpected factors I forgot to consider, I will return on my own accord in around a year. Until then, I would be finally leading a life that I love and should have lived in this mortal, transient experience of being yet another human on this little blue planet, potentially insignificant in the grand scheme of the universe and everything in it. Thank you for reading and your patience-- see you in a year, hopefully not.
Hanging by a thread,
A Young Man and His Dog
I took the dog. Yeah, that's right. I dognapped Bear. Tied him up, muzzled him, threw him into the back of my Jeep and as you're reading this, I'm holding him captive in a cabin in the woods that's smack dab in the middle of nowhere. If you want him (and all of his belongings) to be returned safely, leave a duffle bag or several (however many it takes) containing one billion dollars in cash to the specified address. Nah, I'm just joshin' ya. You seriously didn't think that I dognapped Bear, did you? He's named Bear for a reason. For those of you who are unaware (all two of you), Bear is a 150 pound Saint Bernard. He's not going anywhere unless he wants to. As for the money, I know that we're well off, but we're not THAT well off. I hope you didn't call the cops. Please, don't call the cops. This isn't me being reckless or spontaneous, either. If it was, I wouldn't have involved Bear in any way. So, there's no need to send a search party out for me. And yes, Mom, I remembered my meds. I'll be having phone sessions with my therapist and psychiatrist for the next year and I'll make sure Dr. Brooks sends the prescription for my medication to whatever pharmacy is closest to our place up in the Catskills. Yes, that's where we'll be for the next year. It's not in the middle of nowhere so you don't need to worry, although you'll probably worry anyway. That's just the way you guys are and that's fine and all, but I just had to get away. There's this idea for a book that I've had for the longest time. I just haven't gotten around to it because of all of the distractions at home: TV, video games (As much as I love playing CoD with you bros, it's become an addiction and I need to step away from it for a while. Here's to hoping we'll still be best buds next year so that we could play more and I could play less. A hell of a lot less.), the internet, my parents. No offense. You guys have a tendency to hover and I get why you do it, but to be honest, it's kind of annoying and as implied, it's really distracting, too. I need my own space to focus and give this story the attention it needs. (As an aside, this will be good practice for me. This will give me more of a sense of what it's like to live on my own, so I'll be better prepared for the day when I finally move out.) This story will be about a kid and his dog. Sound familiar? What sets our old dog, Max, and I apart from the main character and his dog is that they solve a series of murders by communicating with the spirits of those who have been murdered. Dark, I know, but I think the subject matter suits the main character's struggles with mental illness, if that makes sense. As you might have already guessed, the main character will struggle with his bipolar depression, same as me. The dog is there as emotional support and a protector of sorts, like Max was to me growing up and how Bear is with me now. I think spending time in the mountains with Bear will serve as a great source of inspiration for me. I hope you all will understand. I wish you all the best. See you next May.
From Your Boys,
Aaron and Bear
PS. In the event of an emergency, please don't hesitate to call. If not, and I say this in the nicest way possible, leave me alone.
Sending All My Love
May 14, 2023 at 4:20 PM
Y’all are probably wondering why I’ve disappeared. I no longer have a reason to stay in the city now that Mama is gone. So, in the years I’ve spent taking care of her, I learned a lot about myself and life in general—especially what it means to put another’s needs above my own. I will never know a more precious soul than our mother’s, and now I want to try and live up to her example. Mama made everyday a joy and a privilege to take care of her, and I want to be the type of person who will be adored the way she was. I would gladly spend the rest of my life lifting her paralyzed body, brushing her teeth, changing her diapers, and everything else that came with her care. I would give anything just to have more time with her—you can be sure of that!
Please do not worry about me as I am in the best hands with Mister. My solitude is his solitude, and we can finally be together full-time now that he’s retiring. You know my big guy will protect me from any wild animals or soulless monsters that can lurk deep in the woods. As scary as that sounds, it’s just time for me to find out what I’m really made of. If I don’t do this, it will continue to burn a hole in my heart and I’ll never find my peace. Let’s just hope this novel won’t be complete shit! Mama’s disability already put us through financial Hell! Eating expired garbage from the food pantry destroyed my body—not that you guys would know anything about that! Haha! Anyway, I gotta run. Take care, my dearest siblings!
PS: Mama’s ashes are with me, where they belong. If my novel wins any awards, she will be placed right next to them. Oh, and please make sure you don’t lose my email address (for emergencies) because there is no cell service where I’m going. I’ll check my email once, maybe twice a week in town. And you need to stop being so stingy with those pictures of the kids! I want to know those adorable little bastards! It’s too late for them to know their grandma, but maybe they can get to know their aunt (now that I have freedom like you guys)! Oh yea, can you believe I found Mama’s cookbook?! It was literally under my nose the whole time! I found all her secret recipes that we always gobbled down as kids! I heard you enjoyed my confectionery gift (I even added a creamy twist)! OMG I went ape shit baking during the pandemic to treat myself after losing my job, so that’s probably the best I’ve ever made her chocolate pie! Cool, huh?! You guys deserve to treat yourselves, too. Write me back when you get this, and let me know how it turned out, fuckers! LOL! Sending all my love!
You only have one mother in this world—cherish her. Even if she isn’t/wasn’t perfect, forgive her and set a better example for future generations. If she’s still with us, she won’t be around forever. The time to love her is now. And remember…
Karma is a patient, maniacal bitch.
Happy Mother’s Day <3
Black Sheep Gone Missing
May 17, 2023
Hey, y'all. I know we haven't talked in a while, but now it's my turn to check out of your life. I'm disappearing for a while. I'm sure you don't actually care where I'm going or even how long I'll be gone. Just know that I'm out. Thanks for all the pain you've brought to my life over the last few years. I plan on using it as a basis for a new novel. Call it fictionalized reality, if you will. I doubt I could dream this stuff up without you first making it true. If in the future you decide you want to hear about what's happened in my life, don't bother calling. You can catch up with me by buying my novel. I'm sure you'll recognize who you are in the story (hint: you're either a minor character or an antagonist). If you don't recognize someone in the story, it's probably someone you've never met. You don't know who I love now. I haven't figured the whole story out yet. If the protagonist lives in the end, maybe you'll see me again. Otherwise, don't bother looking. Ciao!
INTO THE WOODS I GO
Hi. It’s me. I just want let you know I have to get away. I need to go. This is not a forever goodbye. I have so much I have to get out of my head. For years I have tried to write them away. Creating a novel comprised of the compilation of it all. The tornado spinning in my mind. Life always has always been a distraction. Never enough time for me. To let it out. Put it all down. Pulled and needed by all. So I Now it’s time for me. I am stepping away from this life. My phone will be off. My address will be unknown. I need to be alone with my pen as my sword. A place in the middle of nowhere. A cabin in the woods. Just me and the trees. And of course my thoughts
Those words probably don't mean anything anymore. I know I've said the same thing hundreds of times. I know I'm being a huge asshole saying this again. But I'm truly sorry. This time I'm serious, or at least as serious as a coward can be. You're right if you think I'm running away after today. I've only known to run my entire life; I am scared of confrontation after all. I wish I could say this to your face, all of my feelings and all of my heart but I just can't do that. It's okay if you hate me after this, if you want to strangle me or hope for my death. I understand. I've just had enough of everything. Work, life, relationships, it's all too much for me. It feels like I'm in a daze, or the butt of the punchline to some joke that a god, or maybe God himself, made just for me. I've tried to make things better. But now I'm just tired.