It is then and there I realize I don’t give two shits. I do not care, with the fire of one thousand suns. I firmly, passionately, ardently believe

This simply does not matter.

And what does matter?

Exactly the place in a sentence where the comma goes

And the freedom to take long naps on cozy afternoons at the moment your eyes begin to droop

And being awake to take crisp walks when the sun is rising purple over the shoreline

A warm bowl of oatmeal and getting angry when the world is wrong

Giving ice cream cakes to hoodlums

Living your-kind-of dreams in foreign-feeling places until home beats firmly in your toes, strength in your bones.

To me, matter is made up of unwieldy, messy, nebulous ideas with softened edges and unsafe heights.

It matters to me to be wrong and to fail and to start hugging with my whole body

To laugh when things are funny and cry when they are not.

Loneliness is a thing that matters.

So does working, but not for  should’ve, could’ve, would’ve or did.

Not utilizing networks or nailing it down. Saving twenty for 401k’s and saturated versus non-saturated and certainly not counting the exact number of dates you’re supposed to go on before politely revealing yourself.

Friends: this and this and that and the other bullshit things scare me.

They smell of clean vanilla and something vaguely rich like sandalwood, but feel tequila-acid-numb when you swallow them down.

I believe in perfection when it comes to kindness but cannot bring myself to embrace it in spreadsheets because while I understand the power of an organized and angular desk, I am infinitely more interested in the warm flaws and curvy hummanness of the person behind that desk. I want to use her (or him) to change the world.

I may die poor.

And I cannot tell if this is a truth of people who revel in pet hair on their clothes or if I am being tricked.

Because I’m also pretty-kind-of-mostly certain that dying poor is one of those things

That doesn’t matter.

Obviously, this certainty may be a luxury of bouncy joints and youthful ligaments and an always-full-of food-and-hope belly.

I’m careful too.

I want my kids to have a good education and new shoes when they’re needed but I need them to have a mom who lives and works like the quiet-viking women who raised me.

Also, Steve Jobs,

And Amanda Powers,

And Warren Buffet,

And Madeleine Albright after she discovered her own potential,

And an obscure yogi-artist somewhere in the hills of California whose name you will never know.

I worry about the cost of cavities most fiercely when I feel them growing in my heart. Debt is a scary thing.

So I will wear hair that falls nowhere near the safe part of my shoulders and work hard to remember that we can survive without health insurance, the wisdom of the politician, or a fear of calories and carbohydrates.

I will read fiction for three weeks straight and follow my wanderlust and also the regular kind when that feels right.

I will spend hours with one sentence though I cannot spend one more second in a meeting at which we don’t discuss breathing.

The choices have already started, right? Right? To care about the things that matter and beat to death the things that don’t?

Ready. Fire. Aim.