Disclaimer: Eternal Sunshine Of The Spotless Mind is not mine. I'm nowhere near that brilliant. I'm just a loving fan who wanted to borrow the concept and give it a Spashley spin. So here's me giving it a whirl..
My life is about to change in a way I can't even imagine. In a matter of hours, everything I believe to be true will become something else entirely. And there, in the darkness of my room, I'm clueless. There I am, lying flat on my back, just staring at the bedroom ceiling. Watching the shadowy patterns shift with every passing car, with each move the moon makes. Once again, suffering from my little problem with insomnia, wishing I could fall asleep; undoubtedly throwing myself a little pity party for my misfortune. I'm definitely not ready for what's to come.
But I should really take a few steps back here, and tell you the things I do know up to this point. I'm Spencer Carlin and I'm twenty one.I have two older brothers. Clay: amazing. Glen: distant. And two parents. Dad Arthur: amazing. Mom Paula: distant. Growing up we were a tight unit, normal to a sickening point. I mean, we even attended church every Sunday. After all, the family that prays together, stays together, right?
Well I guess somewhere along the way we stopped praying, because we're not that family anymore. I can remember the exact day everything fell away from us. I was almost seventeen and we were on our way to the big apple for a new life. Yes I remember it like it was yesterday. It was all so surreal. One day was all it took. One day and everything changed, without any reason. I simply woke up that morning, and I was a different person. A stranger in my own skin, facing a reflection I did not recognize. As if that wasn't enough, it didn't end there. Everything was off with my family too. It was like we slept through two years, and now here we were, trying to make up for what was lost. I know it sounds crazy, and I can't explain it, but that's exactly how it felt and how it happened. And when we arrived in New York City, finally settling into our new home and lives, it didn't get any better.
There were my parents, who lost that amazing bond they once had, they once shared so long ago. They lost their complete love for each other, becoming two people simply standing in the shoes of their former selves. Nothing more, everything less. As for Glen, he gave up the biggest passion of his life: basketball. He was now cold and no longer the clown of the house. Eventually, he turned to some new friends, ones belonging to the wrong crowd. And lastly, there was Clay. The big brother I absolutely adored, who shone so bright. He was fading. His grades dropped as he completely withdrew from all of us. And it was heartbreaking.
It wasn't long after our move that mom and dad separated, which came as no surprise. It was also during that time that the insomnia began. My life was just going swimmingly! There was one blessing, however, and that was I got to live with Dad. There was something so off with my mom and I, a newfound awkwardness overshadowing a place where healthy communication once stood. We just did not connect like we once had, and some days I couldn't even stand to be around her. I never knew why, but I eventually chalked it up to typical adolescence. The one thing I'll never understand, though, is why she let me go without a fight. No matter how much we had all changed, Mom was always stubborn and always got what she wanted. That was something I couldn't chalk anything up to. Instead, I just added it to the massive pile of things I couldn't understand.
Dad, Clay, and I, found ourselves in the tiny city of Newport, RI, while Glen and Mom stayed in Manhattan. I've never known why we split up this way, and I never asked. Was just the way it happened. Newport was a beautiful city. Small enough to remind us of the country life we once had, but big enough to hold possibility for all of us, especially Dad. He found he could still help the kids who needed it the most. He could help the ones who needed it simply because they had no one else. It was a perfect fit for the three of us, but somehow, it didn't work. I lost interest in all the things once important to me. My love for drawing, cheering, student council...just wasn't there anymore. I quietly finished my last two years of high school, but still managed to pick up some friends along the way and occasionally even have some fun. But the most important thing that happened to me in Newport was meeting Brynn. I met her my first week at Rogers High and that was it. We instantly connected, and I'll never know why. To say we're different is a true understatement.
I can say with absolute certainty that Brynn is perfect. No doubt about it. She strives to be the best she can, simply because she wouldn't have it any other way. Not for her parents or any other outside source. Nope. Brynn does it for herself. It's just who she is and she'd never settle, never settle for anything or anyone. And that alone makes her the strongest person I know. Brynn's always been the outgoing girl. The girl everyone wants in their life, and when they come knocking, she has no problem letting them in. She's also the one who incorporated "social" into my life. She got me among people again, bringing me to every happening party over every weekend. It was during those drunken times, that I'd actually found myself having fun once again.
But that's not all there is to my best friend. No, not by a long shot. Brynn is smarter than anyone I know, and then there are times where she can be more clueless than you'd believe. She can have such a peaceful way about her, and like a light switch, she'll turn on and have you rolling with laughter before you even know it. I can't forget to add, that Brynn is also the most gorgeous girl on this coast, hell maybe both coasts, and she's a lesbian. She kept it no secret from me that first day we met, and I've never had a problem with it. Oh on the contrary, I absolutely love it. Haha, who knows why.
It was always mysterious to me how we became so close so fast. But my sleepless nights have lent me plenty of time for thinking and analyzing my life. And not too long ago, I realized it; Brynn's the girl I once was. She's the shadow of my former self. One simple twist and I'd be sitting comfortably in her shoes, while she'd be chugging along in mine. We're the direct opposite of each other, yet deep down, we're the same. And that's what makes our friendship so sacred. So real. And it's what also makes Brynn so much more than a shadow. She is my rock and without her I don't know what would've become of me.
Brynn got me through those last years of highschool. They were no doubt the roughest, but I've come a long way. And today, aside from my nasty little sleeping problem, I'm almost happy. Ha, who knew being "almost" anything would be good? But for me, it's enough.
For the past year, we've been living in a shitty apartment on the east side of Providence. But while it's shitty, it's also, somehow, perfect. Brynn is in her last year at Providence College, playing club rugby (oooobviously) and I bartend at Jake's (ooooobviously). Yeah, I tried the college thing at CCRI, Rhode Island's finest community college. But it didn't take long for me to realize I wasn't college material. Well not yet anyway. While I may be working my way to some form of happiness, I still have no fucking clue what I want to do with my life. So that's it. Brynn does the school thing while I do the real world thing. And we both make time to do some living in between. We have different lives, but we both love to party, and we both do it exceptionally well if I do say so myself. Friday nights are hers to plan, Saturdays mine, and the rest are free, whatever comes at us. Well unless one of us is working. Yes, there's no doubt about it, we make a great team.
I guess this takes us to the last topic. Boyfriend? No thanks. Girlfriend? Whatever. All that relationship jazz just doesn't appeal to me. It used to, when a lot of other normal things did. But now I'm a mess. A smeared, botched up plate of emotions and confusion. Not to mention, I can't help knowing there's a huge, significant piece of me missing. What it is, I don't know. When it left me, not a clue. But I know there's more to me, there's something I've lost over the years. The hidden part of my mind, the section that thinks without including me, also knows this, and has decided that until I find what's missing, I can't give my incomplete self to anyone. It's not fair, giving part of yourself to someone who's completely capable and ready to give you all of them. So I pretty much keep to myself. I'll bring a guy home every now and then, feel nothing, and never talk to him again. I'll go out with Brynn, lead on some girl, make her ache for me, and just when she thinks she has me, I'll be gone, while she's still there waiting. I'm an absolute contradiction of myself. I know I can't be with anyone, but it doesn't stop me from trying. It's no coincidence that both "spencer" and "trouble" share the same amount of letters. We are completely synonymous. It's a miserable feeling to know how much you hurt people. But it's even worse to know you keep doing it. As you can guess, I've got issues, and they run deep. Brynn's major in psychology has certainly been helpful there. But even she knows enough not to touch them. Thank god for that. I've seen enough therapists, and I don't need anymore. I need her, just the way she is, just my best friend.
So here we are again. Back inside my bedroom. Back to the peaceful moments before the sun creeps over the earth's surface. The warm, comforting light granting us another day. Another chance for something to happen, something to make our life better. And I'm still lying on my back, staring at that same ceiling; completely unaware that today is my day. Everything from my past, everything that has happened, has been leading up to this day. I've been heading right for this cliff, a cliff of change. And right now, I'm laying comfortably on the edge. But somewhere a clock is ticking, and it's slowly pushing me further and further away from that safe ledge.
Any minute now, I'm not only going to leave that edge. I'm going to jump with all my might.
Are you ready?