starting over & W1L 009: Write one leaf about waking up.

For the first day of the semester, or In Which This Semester Leans Over And Whispers To Me, "CALM YO TITS EVERYTHING IS GONNA BE ALL RIGHT U GOT THIS."


Above, rings: estate sale. Green sweater: uncle's. Tights: gift from my brother. Oxfords: Payless. Short shorts: gift from Christine.

W1L 009: Write one leaf about waking up.

This is an unedited version of my original response to this prompt.

Some days I wake up in the morning feeling like P. Diddy. But most of the time, I wake up, stumble to the bathroom, leave the tap on full blast until it runs hot, and do a little dance in the mirror to the fabulous music of the sparkly little men in Lycra and feathers throwing a house party in my head to get my blood flowing while brushing my teeth and rinsing my mouth with a bottle of Jack. Then, armed with a spearmint mouth and the shivers, I shuffle to the kitchen where I force down two scrambled eggs, a bowl of oatmeal, a banana, a buttered piece of toast, a peanut buttered piece of toast, and half a glass of juice, halfheartedly waving off my nausea as I check my email.

Don’t get me wrong. I love breakfast. Just not right after I wake up. I like to get myself worked up for breakfast, get myself to that point where my stomach feels like it’s eating itself before I indulge in anything. I like to accomplish things in the morning before shoveling food into my mouth. (Alas. A student schedule in conjunction with the internet is hardly conducive to waking up early enough for me to do anything substantial before breakfast on a regular basis.)

After I’ve eaten, I brush my teeth again, get dressed, then carefully inspect my face. Do I look like hell today? Most days, the answer is No, you make me wonder how you bring on the cute so hard. But sometimes the answer is Hey, hey, don’t panic yet, this is why you give yourself an hour and a half to get ready to face the world every morning. And one careful application of lipstick and an undisclosed number of strategic bobby pins later, I feel okay, I grab my keys, I’m out the door, I’m gonna hit the city.

But catch me at breakfast, before I’ve slathered enough petroleum-based product on my lips to power a small Southeast Asian village for a week, before I’ve put on my completely toxic face paint that really really wasn’t intended for ingestion, and you’ll have me looking cute as hell or like hell, no preparation. Sans artifice, baby.

Breakfast is a terribly intimate meal, first thing in the morning before the rest of the world wakes up. Lunch is business. Dinner is family or sex (preferably only one of those at a time). Breakfast is like waking up slow with a warm body next to yours, and not wanting at all to contemplate the lazy explosions of warmth going off somewhere between your heart and throat as you watch the rise and fall of that chest, and being caught off guard by the sweetness of a sound so simple as respiration, inspiration, and wanting to cry because you didn’t know your gaze could fall so softly, and waking up and realizing you love him, and going back to sleep.

I’m a big fan of banana pancakes. Breakfast crepes. Hash browns. Jimmy Dean sausages. Anything that’ll slow down my heart.

For me, breakfast is the equivalent of dropping your guard. There’s no lacquered, plucked, carefully enhanced version of you to protect yourself in. Just you at your worst, or maybe your best. Vulnerability is only as terrifying as humiliation is permanent.

What I’m saying is I wanna hold your hand eat breakfast with you.
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