Mima’s Gift

[First Draft]

Morning comes too swiftly. The night had been a patchwork of insomnia and bizarre dreams that lingered irretrievable just below the surface. Despite being in bed for a good ten hours, the alarm comes too soon, and I hit the snooze button three times. I’m just about to drift back into oblivion when I hear a soft knock on the door and my grandmother’s voice,  “Amber?”

I take a deep breath, then project my voice through the quilt that covers my head, “Come in, mima.”

I hear the door open and close, so I pull the covers back as she sits on the bed. She softly brushes my long brown hair away from my face. “Oh my poor little china doll. You look so fragile, today.” She smiles her warm, approving smile.

“You know, if your grandfather had gone to one of those “doctors,” they would have labeled him bi-polar, too. I just thought he was a passionate man. I still do. That’s what attracted me to him. He was so exciting and spontaneous. Of course, that made him unpredictable sometimes, too. And his passion wasn’t just limited to romance; it ran deep with things he disliked, too.”

Mima chuckles like she’s revealing a family secret, and I can’t help but smile. “He didn’t hold back. When he was mad, he let the whole world know about it, and his tongue was razor sharp.” She rolls her eyes.

“What I’m saying, pumpkin, is don’t let their labels get to you. Everyone is just making this shit up as they go along. People haven’t changed in thousands of years. It’s just their excuses that keep evolving.” She gives my back a few comforting pats like she did when I was little.

“Here, I brought you something.” She reaches for a slim book that’s lying in her lap, “I know you’re not much into religion . . .” she paused sensing I was about to interrupt, so I close my mouth and let her continue, “so I thought you might like this instead.” The little book was covered with intricate artwork: strange creatures and complex knot designs. The title read: Celtic Devotional.

“I found it at the bookstore. It has little daily meditations and reflections. I thought it might help you keep things in perspective. The world can only spin as fast as you let it.” She gives me one more pat on the back and stood to leave.

“Mima . . .”

“Yes, dear?”

“Thank you,” I tuck the little book against my chest and smile at her. I don’t really care about the contents. I just appreciated her attempt to see things my way. She’s the only one who ever tried.

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