By Aly Kirke, TIWP Student

I don’t feel strong. I don’t feel resilient. I feel as if I were on a sinking boat, and rather than sink and drown with the boat, I clung to a piece of driftwood. It doesn’t feel brave. It doesn’t feel powerful. It just feels not stupid.

I’ve just been laying on a piece of driftwood month after month. I may see a pretty fish one day, and think I spot a shark coming the next. I may not like it on my driftwood, but I don’t feel resilient for staying here. My job is simply to do nothing. Lay still. Don’t tip over the driftwood. Don’t sleep for too long. Don’t forget to eat. It’s not complex, but somehow it’s still hard.

My legs yearn to move. Some days the sparkling salt water looks tempting. When it’s cloudy, the night is scary without the stars to distract me and make me feel less alone. I wonder what lurks beneath me. With every splash I try to convince myself that I’ll be fine. But I’m not sure I will. No dry land is in sight.

My stomach is getting used to the bobbing of the driftwood over the waves. I just want to get back on my boat and sail home, but even if I could recover my boat I wouldn’t know which way to paddle. It sounds miserable, but really, I’m alright. So maybe I am a little hard on myself. Doing nothing is hard, but I’m okay. And maybe that makes me resilient.

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