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I went to bed last night at what I thought was a reasonable hour, full and satisfied. Tossing and turning I tried to force myself into submission of slumber, but to no avail. I decided to finish reading the second book of the Hunger Games. Its words and the feelings behind them resonating somewhere deep inside of me. Reading is my escape. It is the way I can travel to far off places, feel a part of the lives of the characters, and cry when they go through something horrible. Laugh or feel joy when they reach some tumultuous moment in the book. Then I think, why is it so hard for my children to read? Jade loves to write and she does okay when it comes to actually reading a book. Zack will spend days on something that should only take hours to read. Aiden would rather play video games, but has at least become quite skilled at reading.

My thoughts of financial stress and strain were weighing heavily on me, but reading took away the thoughts of how to fix it, how to keep calm. I just lost myself in this fictional world. I finished the second book and was well into the third. I’ve not blazed through anything so quickly aside from the 50 Shades of Gray series as of late. It’s hard when you don’t have much downtime to read, it’s now something that I have to force, because it means putting something else on the back burner; school work, sleep, something or anything. One of these days my writing will take precedence to those same things. Somewhere a third into book three I could feel myself slipping in and out of consciousness, still holding my phone in my hand where my e-book now resides. I strained to finish one last page, but the words were a blur. The clutches of sleep had their hold and I relented, but I sat down my phone and drifted off. My dreams usually reflect the day I’ve had, something I watched on television, or what I’ve read. I was then in my mind’s version of the hunger games.

Who knows if dreams are supposed to have meaning, but if there was a meaning it was only that I was dealing with my own personal struggles and that I would overcome them. I fought in my own rebellion against my opponents which manifested themselves into fictional characters. Welding a sword I fought with everything I had to stay alive. I did but it was not without its own price. I was cut and battered, but I felt more powerful and rejuvenated. Right before I claimed my prize my phone rang out, I groggily answered to find that it was my mother. “Don’t you have to work today, squirrel?” She said. Struggling to process her words I glanced at my phone and saw that it was after 9:00 A.M.

“I’m not on the schedule until noon, but I had planned to go in early,” I tell her. My voice hoarse and dry. She apologizes for waking me and hangs up. I lay motionless, phone in hand for another 20 minutes, only half awake. I needed coffee. Zack had sat on the couch when I asked him to go to the gas station and suggested that he and I get coffee. I always drank coffee at his age, and so I agreed that he could have some too. By some I meant a small and not the 20 oz. Styrofoam cup that he returned with. Then I listened to his lecturing me of how I was supposed to read the first hunger games book first, instead of the second.

When child lectures parent it is annoying. Teenagers never listen to their parents, but are quick to tell parents what they should or shouldn’t be doing. I deflected his objection with, “I’ve already seen the movie. I will read the first book last, as I already know what happens.” It’s the truth. I have all three books now, but I will not read the first one until I find out the fate of Katniss Everdeen and her companions. Although many dead right now they are fighting for a cause. I don’t have many causes to fight to the death for, but instead I find myself feeling like I may die if I am to face many more personal struggles. However, I do know that somehow things will work out. I will be alright.

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