Looking for the Next Right Action


Remy from Ratatouille, or, as I like to call him, Remy the RA Rat (Bastard).

We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us. -Joseph Campbell

This is my starting point: Joseph Campbell. You might think it’d be easier to let go of the “live we have planned,” if in fact, you didn’t have one very planned at all. I have found that this is not exactly the case.

I am sitting on my porch, the rain on pause, at least temporarily, like prison guards on break, allowing the mosquitoes to break free from their larval lockup and wreak all sorts of vampiric havoc on woman and beast alike. Indian music is undulating in henna and saris, emanating just beyond the northeast corner of my yard.

That’s something you don’t hear every day in Southern Mississippi.

It’s a whole new world.

When I had “a maybe diagnosis,” I was okay. I was surprisingly accepting, and I found myself thinking, “I got this.” Life is all about adaptation, and I was up for the challenge. There was a space between what I was experiencing and the possibility of a label, some ocean of unknowing that I was comfortable in, that I could tread with no expectation. I had some good days and some bad, and some really, really good days, and some pretty bad ones.

But I was adapting.

The past couple days, I’ve been lost. It’s too soon for me to be pessimistic; and I’m not really pessimistic so much as just…stumbling.

I have a picture of this little mouse that probably looks a lot like Remy from Ratatouille, moving around the inside of my body is ruining tissue like power cords, his little teeth gnawing and shredding everything in sight. Today, he’s in my hip, running in circles with bits of black plastic flying over his head. I can type, and I can walk, but I can’t sit down or stand up. Yesterday was in my hands, his teeth scraping against the nerves, not doing any damage exactly, not causing any swelling, but setting every bone in my hands and wrists on fire.

I need to take away his matches.

Tomorrow, Remy may be napping, or decide to take a vacation to Belize and have a layover in my ankles.

That’s the thing about this rat, he’s more indecisive than I am.

I’m messing with my WordPress, trying to find something that suits me, and I haven’t quite found it yet. I thought I knew WordPress, but judging by my success rate on my own domain, I know very little indeed.

The point is: life isn’t about to change. It is changing. Every day, every hour. Walter White knew what was up:

You see, technically, chemistry is the study of matter, but I prefer to see it as the study of change: Electrons change their energy levels. Molecules change their bonds. Elements combine and change into compounds. But that’s all of life, right? It’s the constant, it’s the cycle. It’s solution, dissolution. Just over and over and over. It is growth, then decay, then transformation. It is fascinating, really.

(Breaking Bad, 1.1 “Pilot”)

I’m stuck, right now, looking for the next right thing, the next right action. Tomorrow will be better, whether Remy is partying down south or hanging with Mike in Belize. I just have to find that next right action, that next right step. Any step, maybe.

In the meantime, I think I’ll play some Koko Taylor on repeat.


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