Saturday, January 7, 2012

Cannot Predict Now

by Shanna Germain

Long before this year began, I already knew what I wanted it to be. I wanted it to be my year of “yes.” I even did a blog post about it in December. How I was turning 40 this year. How I had done the divorce and the rebound and the internal exploration. How I wanted to start saying yes to the good things, the important things, the scary things. And start saying no to the obligations, the negatives, the non-joys. I’d looked into the crystal ball of my brain, and I knew what I wanted and how I was going to get it.

I’m like that. A planner. No Magic 8 Balls. No Ouija boards. No fortune cookie futures.

I had a second post started, all about the goals I’d set for this year. Finish my trilogy. Teach more. Do more writers’ events. Write x number of stories for x number of anthologies. Submit to a specific list of publications. I had it all laid out in numbers and checklists and plans.

But before I could finish and publish that goal post, something happened.

My atoms got rearranged. Literally. Okay, maybe not literally but it certainly felt like it. Sometime between Christmas and January 1st, something happened that changed me so profoundly I have no words for it. Some, I suppose, might call it a miracle. Being a woman of science, I would call it the moment when every cell in my body died and was born again. When my skin replaced itself on a fast track. When the me I’d become ended and the me I was supposed to be began again.

There are lots of ways that can happen to a person. A near-death experience. A car accident. Giving birth. Finding love. Finding lust. Occasionally, smaller catalysts can jump start an internal rearranging.

But this particular catalyst? For me, this one is big. This one is me breaking open and some greater force putting me back together the way that I’m supposed to be.

I should say right here: I don’t believe in fate. I don’t believe in soul mates. I don’t believe in love at first sight. I don’t believe in the powers that be.

I do believe in magic.

All this time I thought I didn’t. All this time I was writing about magic and lust and love and I was thinking, “I would really like to believe in these things.” And I was thinking, “At least I’m making them real in fiction.”

That second post is sitting there in my draft folder. Unpublished. It will never be published because it’s no longer true. Not only are the goals no longer true, but the sentiment behind them isn’t either.

For the first time, I don’t think I know what the future will bring. I can shake my Magic 8 Ball ten times a day and believe every answer I’m given. I can ask the Ouija board a question and then walk away before I’ve gotten a response. I can share my fortune and my cookies with the world and know that tomorrow it will all change anyway. And I’m okay with that.

This is all I know about tomorrow: Reply hazy, try again.

And I will.


  1. ?????????????? What happened to your atoms?? You got me going there and I never found out.


  2. I love this post, Shanna. Thank you for sharing—and all best to you.

  3. Thanks so much all! I hope it's a fabulous year for you both!

  4. I'm curious like Garce, Shanna. Could you give us a little hint about how your atoms were rearranged?

  5. Personally, I believe in magic. It's the only rational choice.

    Whatever happened (and I'm guessing that it's meeting that soul mate you never believed in...), celebrate it!

    And by the way, you'll never convince me, after reading your incredible stories, that deep down, you didn't believe...

  6. Yep ... I'm going for the love at first sight, soul mate too ... either that or an alien abduction!

  7. I might have to make a second blog post at some point in the future just to satisfy everyone's curiosity. We could make a betting pool! :)

    Thanks so much, all. Happy new year!


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