Parallel universes

10 Mar

One of the prompts for the writing workshop this week is “imagine there is another ‘you’ living in a parallel universe.” Another me? Intriguing. My mother would say “one of you is enough”. But what if there are lots of other “mes” running around, getting on with their days. What are they doing?

I imagine that each “me” came into existence with each of the decisions I made on how to live my life.

One would have followed her friends into their subject choices at school. So we could all be in the same classes. Because 45 minutes apart, how can friendship survive that? She would likely have gone on to do a secretarial course and married her first boyfriend. Perhaps she would have children now. More than one. She’d be living very near her parents, certainly not more than ten miles away. Out of work as a result of the recession. Not by choice. Her husband too. Things would be hard. I imagine her to be angry and resentful. Unfulfilled. Wondering about all that the world has to offer. All that she has “missed”.

Another one, having done her BA, decided to go into teaching. And did a H.Dip.Ed. She became a teacher. Secondary school. Did quite well for a couple of years, then spontaneously combusted from the stress. Because really, she was not cut out for teaching. She didn’t like speaking in public and she knew that going in. Teenagers can smell this kind of fear and feed off of it. She’s in a padded room now, hugging herself, unaware of her surroundings.

And yet another, having done her MA, well she decided to do her PhD. I’m not entirely sure what happened to her, because I still harbour dreams of this myself, while at the same time all too aware of the possibility of spontaneous combustion. We all, all of the parallel “mes”, fear public speaking. And you can’t do a PhD in Literature without having to talk to large groups of people about it. Them’s the rules.

One did go to Japan. For a year. As planned. Then she went to another country and another and another. One a year until she turned 30. She didn’t get comfortable in Japan and stay for four and a half years. She didn’t dread the thoughts of going to yet another country where she could neither read, write, or speak the language. She relished the thought. Thrived on it. She probably went on to do her PhD, having overcome her fear of speaking in public. Strong as an ox, that one.

But none of them have the hubby or the turtle. And they’re all missing out. When I look at our little family all of the other “mes” can stuff it. Whatever they have, they don’t have what I do. This is the universe I belong in. With them.

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5 Responses to “Parallel universes”

  1. TheMadHouse March 10, 2010 at 3:44 am #

    I dont think I could do this post, as I want to be content with the life I have and not wish for something different!!

  2. Josie @Sleep is for the Weak March 12, 2010 at 5:59 am #

    I love this. There’s something amazingly cathartic and empowering about imagining the possibilities of other lives before realising that what you want is actually what you already have.

    🙂 x

    • turtleturtleturtle March 16, 2010 at 2:33 pm #

      Exactly!

  3. Livi March 12, 2010 at 9:41 am #

    I love the ending to that, so lovely!

    Interesting to hear all the possibilities!

    • turtleturtleturtle March 16, 2010 at 2:33 pm #

      I’m not entirely sure there were any other possibilities though. The choices I made were the only ones I could have made. I think.

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