Eleanore Vs. 20 minutes

Darling readers,

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend, especially for those who Memorial Day is particularly relevant to. Wow, what an average way to start a post for once! Don’t worry; it only gets weirder from here.

My weekend was a whole lot of life. The good, the bad, and the ugly all together, all at once. The good was that my boyfriend and I redid our bedroom after nearly a year of hating it; our kitchen and living room slowly took shape to become a home, but the bedroom never seemed to converge along with them. Since we live in a somewhat small shotgun apartment, there’s only so much we can do with the space, but simply reorganizing and rearranging the furniture and decorations made a world of difference.

Since living here the one thing I hated the most was that from my bed, since the pocket door is broken, I was able to see through the entire house. For some reason, it stressed me out and made it hard to sleep, especially when I would wake up in the middle of the night from a nightmare, then stare into the blackness of the rest of my apartment and imagine all sorts of spooky situations. Now that the bed is facing a wall, I feel so much safer and calmer. It’s so interesting what a simple change can do.

On the bad side of the weekend, I got terribly ill, from what I am unsure. At first I was nearly certain I had a stomach virus. The nausea and headache that came upon me last night nearly caused me to have a vasovagal episode, which is honestly, a nightmare. There are few things I hate more than the feeling of being dragged down to hell by Vasovagal Syncope. It even surpasses having my bed in front of a door that is impossible to close.

Last night I felt wretched as I tossed in my bed in agony. I ended up sleeping on and off from 8pm to 8am, waking up to misery for a half hour here and there only to be too weak to remain conscious. Part of me is really worried about what is wrong with me, but the other part of me is almost positive either stress or a Celiac reaction to being glutened is the culprit. If I start breaking out in a rash within the next week, we’ll know for sure. Oddly, I am sort of praying that I will get the rash, because while it absolutely sucks, at least I will have an answer as to what upset my body this weekend.

Thankfully, today I felt a tiny bit better, so we were still able to drive an hour to another side of Missouri for a family BBQ. After we returned home, we crawled in bed and watched Guardians of the Galaxy (which I also have a blog idea for, so stay tuned!) Halfway through I decided to make a pizza. I dragged my half sick self to the kitchen and sliced the bell pepper and sprinkled on the olives, then tossed the pizza into the oven. I set the timer to 20 minutes and then, I paused.

What could I do in 20 minutes? I could go back to the bedroom to continue watching the movie, as drooling over Chris Pratt and Zoe Saldana is never something I’d object to, but a sink full of dishes was staring at me, too. Despite swearing not to do housework today because I am still very weak and ill, tomorrow is going to be extremely stressful since I will not only be unwell but will have to start my job.

So, reluctantly, I did the damn dishes.

Surprisingly (to me) I got them all done before the pizza was baked. Naturally, because I am Eleanore and have a mind that has thoughts running through it faster than the speed of a Tron Lightcycle, I began to obsess over the concept of what can happen in 20 minutes? At first I thought of some pretty standard stuff. In 20 minutes, I could:

  • Bake a pizza
  • Do dishes
  • Take a Shower
  • Drive to Target (one way)
  • Film a Vlog
  • Other Stuff

Then, I began to think more deeply, again, because I am myself, and I must overthink everything. In the same time it takes to do any of the things I listed above, in 20 minutes, these could also happen:

  • Anaphylactic Shock
  • An Earthquake that could crack the ground
  • A couple could said their wedding vows
  • A child could walk for the very first time
  • An album I’ve never heard could become my favorite album of all time
  • Other life changing stuff

Isn’t that incredible? In such a short amount of time, so much or so little could happen, and it honestly astounds me. Last night, within twenty minutes, I went from somewhat functional to sobbing in my bed from horrible pain, tapping my body parts because my anxiety and fear made my whole body feel numb. Only a day later, I use the same amount of time to make myself a simple dinner and clean my kitchen. 20 minutes can be trivial, life altering, or anywhere in between. The craziest part is, we never know what day will bring 20 minutes of either kind.

My entire life my grandfather would tell me that time goes by too fast, and that I should enjoy it. As a kid, I remember my days, especially some of the most difficult ones, going on infinitely. Now, even the days that I am suffering, though not always immediately, ultimately seem to pass by in an instance. As I have grown I feel as if days turn to hours, and each batch of 20 minutes I get only feel like 10 seconds. Especially since my grandfather’s recent passing, it seems that the 25 years I spent knowing him have all too quickly slipped out of my hands.

To go even deeper, time itself is a fairly abstract concept. We know a day is defined as a full rotation of Earth on its axis, while a year is a full rotation of Earth along its path around the Sun. And yet, if we were to label years, seconds instead, or even call a year a starfish (happy New Starfish, everyone!) we’d really be unperturbed by it. As Shakespeare doth proclaim, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet.” Likewise, 20 minutes called by any other name still has the potential to be an either extraordinary or uneventful period in my life.

I will probably forget next week that I spent 20 minutes of my time cleaning and making a pizza.

I will never forget the 20 minutes I went into anaphylactic shock and nearly died, or the 20 minutes it took for a stranger to become one of the most important people in my life.

Either way, I think my grandfather’s advice is invaluable.

No matter how much or how little time we have, we truly ought to make the best of it, because it does fly by.

I hope everyone has a very good rest of their Starfish.

So I say I’m sorry I can’t, I’ve got plans
As I watched the time slip through my hands

What you don’t know now, one day you’ll learn,
Growing up is a heavy leaf to turn.
A heavy leaf to turn.

Take me with you, ’cause even on your own,
You are not alone.

Take me with you, ’cause even by yourself, my love,
You are something else.

~Portugal – Walk the Moon 


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