An Open Letter to My Brain

Dear Brain,

Guessing you already know who this is. You know most things. Or at least, you like to pretend you do.

I have come to the realization that you actually don’t know everything, despite the eighteen years of believing it. The difference between left and right still confuses you, you haven’t quite come to the full understanding of the male mind, and don’t even get started on anything above Algebra I.

But, the things you do know, you know very well. Writing is like breathing, you’re very good at choosing music based on my mood, and you also have the ability to find humor in the simplest things. I appreciate that a lot, because I know that I have put you through hell.

I don’t know how you do it, truly. You keep me off the ledge while simultaneously juggling every mindless thought (there are plenty of those, keep in mind). You teach me how to keep breathing, remember how to push the gas pedal, and quickly brainstorm solutions for even the toughest of problems. I am so sorry for how much I neglect and under- appreciate you. I think the worst part is, I know I’m neglecting you. I know better than to eat four cookies, procrastinate my book report, and watch a forty minute video of dogs on a trampoline, and yet, here I am doing it anyways.

You need to start taking control of this. Enough is enough. You know better than I do, and you’ve somehow managed to lasso me into the blonde-headed writer freak (I say lovingly) that I am today. So lasso me into being even better. We can all be better versions of ourselves if we actually utilize your abilities. I feel terrible, physically and mentally, when I don’t listen to you because I think I know what I’m doing, but I haven’t the slightest clue.

I know what you like though, and from here on out I’ll do better to give you those things. More good food, but maybe not so much sugar. More Twenty One Pilots music, but maybe no so loud. More fast driving, but maybe not so fast. More dancing (there’s no exception to this. Always dance.) More books, but maybe not about politics and science theories. More coffee, but maybe not so much caffeine. More laughter, and maybe more laughter after that.

Dear Brain, in closing, thank you for the time you dedicate to me. You don’t get many days off, do you? Sure, the occasional vacation every once in a while (which leaves me out of breath and in a tizzy), but you deserve it. Just teach me first how to take care of myself and this body of mine. You’re in charge here, you type the words, flip the pages, lift the spoon, steer the car, move my feet.

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Please help me to also take care of you, because in the end, it’s you and me. You hold the lock and key to the cage that keeps every wild animal contained inside, but sometimes they get loose anyways. They keep me up at night, they cause me wrinkles, they try to come out in public, they make me cry, they cause me to doubt myself.  I need you to tame them, or just train them to follow your command. Teach them to let me sleep through the night. To smile more often. To walk into a crowded room and remember how to breathe. To dry my eyes, and give me confidence. I’ve learned everything I know from you, and do you think you could teach the monsters to settle down a bit?

I sincerely appreciate any and all efforts, and for trying to stay present when you can. I owe you one.

Yours,

Maddie

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