Hakuna Matata

My grandmother used to do fingernail inspections.

“Let’s see your nails,” she’d say whenever we had a free moment together.

She’d usually make a little clicking noise of disapproval with her tongue because, c’mon, I always bit my nails and often had dirt under their gnarly remains after playing outside with the boys.

She would make a clicking noise today.

Despite taking nail-health vitamins and frequently brushing on coats of nail strengthener, I’ve been snagging my fingernails on furniture and clothing while softening them beyond repair when I wash my dishes. Having braces forever cured me of biting my nails, but lately I’ve been taking the snagged edges and tearing at them with my fingers. The nail strengthener formula stung my exposed nailbeds just a bit ago as I brushed it on while sitting at my new kitchen island/table.

Sure, Grandma would make a clicking noise with her tongue today if she saw my fingernails, but I don’t need to worry about it. In fact, I don’t need to worry about anything. 

I have a job. I have a car. I have a roof over my head (AND A DECK AND A PORCH AND A WASHER AND DRYER AND A PARKING SPACE) and food in my pantry.

I don’t have a homework assignment due at midnight. I don’t have three projects to do and an exam to study for after I get done with work.

She’d make a clicking noise today at my fingernails, but that’s the only click of disapproval I’d get from her right now.

I’ve been sleeping deeply and dreaming –– DREAMING –– for the first time in years. I have no worries. The only clicking sound I hear now comes from my stovetop when I light one of the gas burners to make myself dinner.

Hakuna Matata.

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He has shown me how

Normally when Spring rolls around, I open my window, freshen up my room, enjoy the sound of birds singing and sit on the front porch to soak it all in. It’s been years since I have actually gone outside to play and run around and get some exercise. I have gotten back on track with my life.

I started eating breakfast again. Every morning, I dig out the Rice Krispies, pour myself a bowl along with a glass of OJ and then settle down with one of my daily vitamins that I need to up the iron level in my body. I’m a girl, you see, and girls need more iron than boys do. I have established a rather strict routine to keep up with everything. I don’t scramble to get homework done anymore; I get it done right after it’s assigned and then I don’t have to worry. It’s fun not having any worries. Hakuna Matata!

Last Sunday, I was sick, which is odd for me. I’m NEVER sick. The last time I missed school was when I had pink eye – that doesn’t qualify as the queasiness I’m speaking of now. I get plenty of Vitamin C, take cough syrup when I feel a cold coming on and suck it up when I have a tiny stomachache. But, on this day, I woke up, felt awful, vomited a couple times and then took to the couch for the rest of the day, with only my pillow, a blanket, a heating pad and the drone of a television to keep me company. That one day was the first day in well over a month that I was completely miserable. Part of it has to do with the fact that I felt like I was going to die. The other part was the fact that it was the first day in a streak of nineteen that I hadn’t spent the day with Robby. Yeah, you read correctly. We are inseparable. When I told this to some people in my English class the Monday after that dreadful Sunday, one girl (who was astounded, I might add) asked me, “how do you get all of your schoolwork done?” because, well, Robby is over at my house or I’m over at his every school night. I replied with “well, while you guys are all talking during the free time we have in Chemistry, I sit down and get all of my homework done.” This relates back to the routine I now have down pat. I get all of my homework done and then I don’t have to worry about it, and plus, I get to see Robby. Which yeah, I could get my homework done after he leaves, but that’s generally around 10 o’clock and lately I’ve been getting to bed around 10:30, which is very, very early for me. But hey, it’s all a part of wanting to live a healthier lifestyle.

Now, back to the part about Spring. Normally, I watch it happen. This year, I’ve been a part of it. Robby has shown me how. If it’s nice out, you’d better believe we’re outside doing something. We spent March 21st jumping from cliffs into pits of sand. I definitely lived that day. It felt good to live. Since then, we’ve taken countless walks, gazed at the stars, swung on the swings behind his house, jumped on the trampoline, played catch, ridden our bikes and sat out on the porch with smoothies that I surprised him with. I saw him three different times today, much like I did yesterday. He surprised me by stopping by this morning on his bike before heading out to practice. After practice, he rode right back, and I welcomed him with a strawberry banana smoothie I’d made up for him in my hand. Then, back he came for the real plans that we had made for today. My feet get covered with dirt everyday, and it’s such a great feeling.

I feel healthy. I feel free. I feel fun. I’ve felt the sun on countless occasions already, and Spring has hardly even started. I have a good feeling about everything, and I hope this never stops. I’m the old me with a new twist, and there are so many people out there that are happy to see that I’ve returned to my happy, bubbly self. I’m back.