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Maybe I’ll Just Go Back to Bed

February 20, 2020

I do have my pet theories about the way the world works (my world, at least). And one, which has proved tried-and-true, is this: as goes my morning, so goes the rest of my day. Now, this can be good news indeed, if my early hours are filled with accomplishment, rainbows and butterflies. If, for example, I write a good piece before noon, I am likely to hear from an editor accepting that or another piece of mine, sell a book or two, and line up a speaking gig. These are also the days when my hair is frizz-free, I get a surprise phone call from one of my kids and the new chicken dish is a big hit at dinner.

On the flip side, once things start off on the wrong foot, the day is basically doomed. Take technology: on the same day recently, Microsoft Word abruptly stopped working on my Mac, for reasons unknown (even to the Geek Squad at Best Buy) and I was also suddenly unable to print anything. May as well have just gone back to bed at that point, because it was also the day that I had not one but two essays rejected. And the bread I was baking didn't rise. And my hair was meh. And the surprise text from my daughter was that she would NOT be able to come home for a visit after all (surprise!)

I’ve had multi-day (even multi-week) runs of bad or good fortune, both of which are disconcerting. When multiple appliances fail at the same time as the car needs a new transmission, or, conversely, when the entire fam escapes the nasty stomach bug making the rounds. What gives? And if I can’t figure that out, what’s to keep the bad things from continuing, or the good things to suddenly stop? When I compare notes with others, the results are a mixed bag. Some kindred souls share similar tales of woes and wows. Others maintain that The Power of Positive Thinking ™ inoculates them from ever having a crummy day.

This line of reasoning is pretty irrational, I realize. There is a good bit of randomness in life, and patterns most often do not apply. That does not, however, stop me from seeing patterns everywhere, from the torrential downpours that usually accompany my white-knuckle drives downtown, to the brilliantly sunny outdoor wedding of a friend’s daughter—a friend upon whom the sun always seems to shine.  

So here we are, on 2-20-20 (good omen? Bad omen? Omen at all?) I began today emailing an editor a pitch for an essay, featuring a major typo. We’re off to the races! I'm sure there have been exceptions to my rule, but I can't recall ANY train wreck of a morning that ended up in triumph. And I wonder if these are self-fulfilling prophecies, and I begin to emit negative vibes to the universe immediately after the first misstep.

Maybe, indeed, it’s just me.

But what if it isn’t?

 

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    I am an author (of four books, numerous plays, poetry and freelance articles,) a director (of Spiritual Formation at a Lutheran church,) and a producer (of five kids).

    I write about my hectic, funny, perfectly imperfect life.

    Please visit my website: www.eliseseyfried.com or email me at eliseseyf@gmail.com.