August 22, 2019
It’s a slender creature with a long and flowing tail. Does It really understand what Its purpose is besides surfacing every once in a while to spit truths? Not entirely, no. It just knows three things to be true. Those three things are: the mermaid’s passion for science, its existence in the water, its thoughtful way of speaking.
Ask it if it’s a real mermaid and watch the mermaid wrinkle its nose in disgust. Don’t you know mermaids don’t exist? The mere question puts a look of puzzlement on its face as if It can’t understand how stupid you are but the fact It’s a mermaid still stands. It will react similarly to questions regarding whether or not It has legs. Of course not dummy.
This creature of mystery came calling one sleepless night in the Colorado wilderness. As a very human girl lay still and sleepless, an entity emerged from the swirling currents of the ceiling above and whispered a hello. Once contact was made, the world unfolded and a eureka moment appeared as if out of the blue.
For years it seems my goal was always to fit into whichever mold struck my fancy. First was the prestigious world of journalism that came to tempt me. I enrolled in college with the intention of becoming a world-class journalist only to find that the fit was far from comfortable. Next to take hold of me was a love for science and the minds that taught it at my university. This one held fast for a long while.
I realized only after devoting a good two years to working in a lab that the fit was not what I once thought. Though my love for writing and science were as strong as they’d ever been, trying to fit into those respective worlds as an exclusive to either was just not me.
Fast forward a year into my post-graduate life. A whirlwind ride on a career path I never once thought possible sits now where the others eventually ended up. I am realizing the modeling mold is, once again, not a perfect fit.
I discovered something this summer. That discovery turned into a month-long challenge that turned into the moment I described above. The chain of events are as follows:
First and foremost, the reintroduction to a dormant passion. Wading into the water to resume swimming after a long period of no such activity planted me firmly into a bliss I had long forgotten. On top of this, using swimming as a tool to interact and teach others further strengthened my love and admiration for the sport.
Post epiphany, this writing challenge. Sticking to something is not a strong suit of mine by any stretch. Forcing myself into this headspace day after day was difficult but also what I needed to enter the preliminary reflection phase of myself, my future, my career.
The trigger was this long and ongoing trip into the Colorado wilderness. Hiking in terrains with only my own mind to keep my company at times fostered many an existential question.
Combined in this formula, a path began to take shape before me. Truthfully, I never once thought of patching these passions together in such a way. The Colorado mountains are good at wresting things free from their hidden crannies. Then, I lay awake and motionless on this night. The 21st.
She came to me and sat at my feet. Startled, I couldn’t sleep and instead spent the hours imagining her world as my own. The dream was a passionate affair and I was entranced.
The mermaid floats suspended in water. She beckons to me. I take her hand.