Sometimes you win, sometimes you learn.
Sometimes you win. You wake up to an email telling you that you’re finally employed. You dance around your room without your glasses on, only to trip over your nightstand and fall face-first into the radiator. Sometimes you learn.
Sometimes you win. A boy with an adorable smile tells you that your imperfections make you beautiful. For once, you can see yourself through someone else’s eyes; the fierce loyalty, the shy crooked smile, the eyes that draw the world in like a whirlpool. You fall in love with what he sees, but he doesn’t. It was never meant to last longer than a moment. Sometimes you learn.
Sometimes you win. Sometimes the words flow easily, like Ernest Hemingway meets Niagara Falls. Everything comes together perfectly, a flawless concoction of letters and words and phrases and sentences that steams with meaning and glows with passion. Sometimes they’re lost in your head, swirling through the pathways of your brain, unwilling to fall out the way you’d like, leaving you tired and angry and meek. Sometimes you learn.
Sometimes you win. You look around at your messy living room and your mismatched throw pillows and you think, “this is mine.” You never thought you could make it on your own, not after everything you’ve been through, but here you are. It could use a good vacuuming; you should run the dishwasher. But you’re here, your feet resting casually on the coffee table, cheap Christmas lights twinkling in the windows, typing words that a thousand people will read. You are everything you never thought was possible. Sometimes you learn.