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Right Where I Want to Be
6:30 A.M. The sun shines through my half-covered windows on a warm Saturday morning in July. I blink my eyes and shake my head, trying to act like I don’t want to wake up, but I really do. Sure, work is hard, but I love my job, and I’m right where I want to be.
6:34 A.M. I slowly wake as the silence of my room takes over yet again. I carefully get out of bed, trying not to wake my sleeping wife and make her angry. I never use an alarm because it could wake her and it annoys me; too loud, too demanding. I don’t like being reminded to get up especially because I can’t be late. As a fiction author, I work my own hours; I’m my own boss.
6:38. I didn’t sleep well last night, and I am exhausted. Every time I blink, it feels less likely that I will open my eyes again. This happens often as I have never been a great sleeper and wake up multiple times in the night, usually when I am stressed out.
6:45 A.M. I step on my three-year-old son’s toys. I’m always telling my children to pick their stuff up, but they never do. I begin to think about my other children. One boy who is fourteen while my little princess is eight. I smile just thinking about them. They keep me going. They are the reason that I deal with the pressures of everyday life. As I think about them, I know that I’m right where I want to be.
6:50 A.M. I slowly pour orange juice into my cup and make my toast, the blackened sides buttered. Then, I sit down in front of the TV. Almost immediately as I sit down, my wife walks in, her hair frizzy from being asleep. Everything brightens when I see her. Everything is calm, all imperfections are suddenly perfect. As she makes her way from the kitchen, she comes up from behind and hugs my neck. I ask her how she slept as she steals the remote from my hand. She giggles as she answers then changes the channel to the Food Network. I don’t understand but ever since I was a teenager, when we met, I feel like everybody is obsessed with food, like why.
6:55 A.M. I can sit in this moment forever, I think to myself as I stare at my wife. She’s drinking her coffee as she makes her way to the couch, her long hair bouncing on her shoulders. She makes everything alright. All of the raindrops hitting me are blocked, and the clouds eclipsing the sun are pulled away. She becomes a shield that deflects all the atrocious things that life throws in the way. I guess that’s what love feels like. It’s as if no matter what happens, as long as I have her, I can accomplish anything. I am right where I want to be.
8:15 A.M. My 14-year-old son walks down the stairs. He goes and grabs a yogurt and a granola bar from the fridge and pantry. He has his jersey for his summer soccer team on. He has one headphone dangling from his ear. He taps my shoulder, just his way to let me know he’s ready to win today. I am his coach, and it makes me so proud to have a sports star like him on my team. Although he’s not the best one on the field, he always tries his best and he really impacts the other players in a positive way. I always make sure that when I coach him I treat him like any other player, but I secretly root for him to get the ball more. What parent wouldn’t? As we get into the car, he plugs in his music and starts preparing a playlist for the half hour drive. He can’t sing and neither can I, so we laugh as we sing together. As he puts the first song on, I know that I am right where I want to be.
11:00 P.M. My son gets back in the car, full of joy from the winning goal he scored. The sun shines through the window, warming the car. I begin to take in the beautiful surroundings. The green hills in the distance. The cloudless, perfect blue sky. The hot air that pushes through the open window and makes me feel as though I’m on top of the world. In a way, I am on top of the world, because I know that I’m right where I want to be.
1:30 P.M. I walk into my dimly lit office, and casually flip open my computer. I open the most recent document, an idea for a novel, my best one yet. About a boy who never knew his brain was so in tune with the universe that he could end the world or save it, just by thinking of a memory. He is trained to fight an evil society but then is betrayed by the one who taught him. However, I’m stumped at what to write next. I think back to my past books, the stories that got me to where I am. How important they made my life and how much they inspired kids to follow their dreams like I did mine. I never thought I could actually make it as a writer, but I gave it a shot, and, much to my surprise, my first book, a sci-fi story for young adults called “The Wings at Night”, catapulted onto the New York Times Bestseller list. I realize how I could have failed as a writer and made being successful much harder. However, it went better than I could’ve expected, and I know that I’m right where I want to be.
4:30 P.M. I walk out of my office after finishing three more chapters of my novel. Immediately, I’m attacked by my eight-year-old daughter as she jumps on my back laughing. Instead of stumbling, I turn around and lift her, laughing as well. She asks me if we could go play catch outside with the frisbee. My three-year-old son comes over and starts begging me to play with use. Of course, I agree, and we race each other outside. The sun is beginning to dip lower and provides a softer warmth, rather than normal intense heat of the summer. We begin to throw the frisbee, my daughter diving for most anything, even when she doesn’t have to. My son dives too, but he’s too young to actually catch the frisbee. As we play I tell them about how I played ultimate frisbee in college. Then, how after college I also played in the AUDL (American Ultimate Disk League) for two years, before retiring to pursue my dream as a writer. I laugh as my daughter tells me that I’ve told this story before. I know that, I just like to push her buttons. As the sunlight reflects off of the soaring frisbee I know that I’m right where I want to be.
12:00 P.M. I turn off my lights and a calming darkness fills the bedroom. I fumble around with the switch on the small lamp to read a book. Always fiction; I can’t stand nonfiction. I clamber into bed, my wife already there, trying to fall asleep. As I look at her sleeping, everything feels so perfect. I turn off my light after reading for fifteen minutes. I feel the silence of the room, the sweet, perfect silence, and I know that I’m right where I want to be.