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  • "Always think twice," he said; "you might discover another angle."

    I did. I do. When my dream fades and the weight of reality seems like too heavy a burden, I think of the time he turned my kayak over, to test my survival skills. "You don't know your limits until you've crossed them," he said. Since then, I've crossed them all, and I'm stronger for it.

    I could have died that day, I think I did. Upside-down beneath the surface, watching the treetops and peaks above, shimmering like a mirage, a dream beyond my reach. The underwater was dark and lovely, and so quiet. I took it all in, I let go of the air and breathed the water, and I felt so calm, so fulfilled, all-encompassing, invincible. Everything seemed to fall into place, floating above me, like a pie in the sky. When he pulled me out of the water I was smiling. I can't remember that, but he says there was a smile on my face even when the springtide flowed out of me, like a tidal surge, like a breaker, rushing over my stone-grey lip. I do remember him crying, but later he forced me back into the kayak, and he turned it over again, and again and again until my technique improved. I took in a lot of water that day, balancing the weight of the world on my hands and feet. It was heavy, almost impossible to turn over.

    "You keep trying until you make it," he said; "it's the only way."

    And it is, and I will. My dreams are worth the effort. Reality weighs me down sometimes, but I'm all muscle and willpower, I can bear it, I can. I'm enduring, I'll keep up my illusions until they resemble a truth, I'll keep editing for as long as it takes to get there.
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