100 ways I'm broken - Kristen Kalp

100 ways I’m broken

I routinely scoff at books I know I need to read,
like The Ultimate Guide to Making Your Retirement Make Sense
or Master Your Cravings 4 Life (4 Real This Time)
or How to Adult Like You Care About Adulting.

I love sugar even though it makes me weepy
and dairy even though it gives me zits
and Facebook even though it gives me zombie-screen-face.

I want to save the world and blow it up. (Sometimes in the same breath.)
I don’t watch the news because it hurts
and care more about homeless dogs than homeless adults.
I’m not sure my efforts to save the world have made any difference,
just like I’m not sure my art means anything or my life has an ultimate
deep-down-for-real-for-real purpose other than the one I give it.

I can’t extrovert for more than an hour at a time
and would take last place in the Small Talk Olympics.
“So um…yah…um…”

I’ve got a soft spot for baby animals on the internet
and “Eeep!” loudly at dogs in public
and wish I could hug the porcupines at the zoo.

I routinely eat too much bacon.
I wear tights as pants sometimes.
My I.Q. is embarrassingly high when compared with my credit score.

I suffer from seasonal affective disorder
and depression and abibliophobia —
the fear of running out of reading materials —
so I packed twelve books for my last trip
and my suitcase was almost too heavy to fly.

I routinely shrink clothing in the dryer and
would rather travel than spend money on just about anything else.

I am, officially, ‘obese’ on the medical terminology scale
and am better at marketing other people’s work than I am my own.

I cried when I watched a movie about ethical fashion
because I didn’t know I was causing so much harm with my clothing choices.
(I hope my pre-knowing-about-ethical clothing sparkly gold sneakers last a long time.)

I don’t let myself go to Target alone
because I need that haphazard $150 for other things.

I still don’t know how to do contour makeup.
That one time I tried to do eyebrow stencils I had a crooked eyebrow
and looked exceptionally skeptical all afternoon.

I would rather live in a shoebox by the water than anywhere else
but I live a landlocked life. Missing the ocean hurts every day.

I want to say I’m wise and above try to fix myself
but really, I suspect the broken
is where the magic seeps in,

and so when I make extended eye contact with kids
and we break into dance at the restaurant
I can call it ‘broken’ or ‘magic’
and either label will fit, depending.

When we gather and don’t talk about the weather
or exchange recipes but discuss souls and light and dark
and you show me who you are
we can call it ‘broken’ or ‘magic’
and either will be true

and when we agree that having to feed yourself three times a day,
every day,
FOR LIFE,
is really the worst,
again:

Magic.
Broken.
One and the same.

So let’s be magic, forever and ever,
which means broken, forever and ever,
and let’s enjoy the way the sunshine hits your forgotten to-do list,
the way you failed at meal planning again,
and all the other ways magic has found
to weasel its way into your existence,
today and every single day.

(But really: you’re not allowed to go to Target alone.)

P.S.  Once we establish that you are, in fact, magic — listen to Magic vs. Muggle: the struggle is real and do a little something about it.

M-School is for bringing your particular brand of magic to life.  Check it out.

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