If the best of all possible worlds were reality, Karma would still work. I’d have time to read my children bedtime stories every night, to lie in bed with them and cuddle, to watch Disney movies and make up our own fantasies together. If the best of all possible worlds were reality, I wouldn’t have to endure too much anxiety. I could live happily, comfortably, without worrying about security, about my finances. I’d know more about finances and wouldn’t feel intimidated by keeping track of it all. I’d raise independent children full of passion, drive, and their own wants.
If the best of all possible worlds were reality, I’d eat in bistros and drink wine, and watch lives unfold, surrounded by characters. I’d continue to learn about things that excite me. I’d continue to have moments like I did outside Mrs. Kalb’s class, inside Mary Gordon’s class. I’d leave the house more and have more people over for dinner. I’d be okay with all the contradictions.
If the best of all possible worlds were reality, I’d have a house in Florida with white seating that the kids would never ruin, where I could walk barefoot, drinking lemon water from tall glasses. I’d have a pool and wouldn’t need to clean it. My children would always be safe and healthy and excellent swimmers. My family would be closer, here for holiday dinners and dance recitals. If the best of all possible worlds were reality, my house would be decorated with rich fabrics, coordinated like outfits, with central vac for a dust free, pet hair free, home that smells of the seasons.
Phil and I would fight much less, he’d somehow get less frustrated, have more patience, and wouldn’t be as loud as he is, or so easily irritated. I’d diffuse the situation and handle it correctly. If the best of all possible worlds were reality, he’d be healthy, and we wouldn’t have to think about the things we do. We’d have more dinners outside, more wine, and more grilled fish. If the best of all worlds were possible, we’d dance. Or know how to dance, but mostly just dance together at all.
If the best of all worlds were reality ideas would come easily and I’d be left to craft the fun parts. To create menus, to take painting classes, to learn to play the guitar with the kids. If the best of all possible worlds were reality, we’d take a family vacation somewhere new each year and blow up our photos for framing.
If the best of all possible worlds were reality, I wouldn’t have to worry about web design, marketing, or advertising. Someone else could handle it all. I wouldn’t have to be in self-sales.If the best of all possible worlds were reality, I’d have people stopping me on the street, telling me how I’ve influenced their lives, how I’ve touched them, moved them, given them the courage to take risks in life.
Maybe I could act a little, sing perhaps, skits and campfires. Improvisation. People would still be in plays as adults, even if they suck. I love being a mother and wish there were more hours to do it all, to nurture and make my family feel safe, and take the uninterrupted time it takes for me to create more things of which I’m proud. I want to make a difference in the world, to touch lives and make people think. I don’t want to have to worry if my books are in stores, if my show gets picked up for another season, if people think I’m talented. In the best of all possible worlds, I wouldn’t need validation. I’d know and believe in my own voice and ideas and wouldn’t be bullied out of them. I’d laugh a little more.
I feel so lucky that I’m able to do what I love. I think I need to read more because when I read, I think. I need to live more, interact more, meet people and hear their stories. There are easy ideas out there, simple, obvious. I want to create a story with characters who are frustrated, restless with where they are, desperately wanting change but struggling to figure out where they belong. I want to make enough money to know my children are always provided for, that they get good educations, opening their world to whatever opportunities they want. I want to try writing other things, to try fiction, to write about coming of age Judy Blume kind of moments, to be giddy about ideas and excited to write about them. I want to be able to focus on the work, on the actual writing, reading, and thinking, watching movies and going to museums, being enriched. I want to keep wanting. "Never satisfied" isn’t the worst thing in the world… in fact, it’s part of what makes the best of all worlds possible.