Hi everyone! This is a story about taking naps. What would you do if you could start your nap over again?
Day by day, she fought to stay awake. At night, facing the wall, she could see her breath come back, stirring her into place. Her gaze could only see an odd, black shadow.
Napping feverishly on an ex-boyfriend’s mattress, my breath came to me, rousing my face. There was no odd black shadow, only the installation piece (University of Calgary, Faculty of Art, 2001) I completed about a red cross and red intersecting paint brushes. Over time, the red morphed into a black matte surface, replacing the glowing red symbols with something different…
I gasped for air, clutching my heart staring into Kevin’s barren closet. I saw myself as a ‘doctor’, healing the world from every known pain of mankind. In that moment, my heart sung and I cried. I felt adorned, yet I was confused as to how this could have happened. How could this be a reality that I, Chona Fe, changed the world? Healed it, in fact. How could I be the charging force that put everything into place?
The only other time this happened, I was napping, this time at my aunt’s house in one of the empty rooms. (Note: Filipino homes always have empty rooms; they’re probably accommodating ghosts.) All of the 90s furniture, including a stark, reflective black master’s bedroom set, had no meaning or design in that place. That place where I slumbered and was suddenly awoken again. I think I was 13, sitting up abruptly on the right side of the bed, staring at myself. Yelling. Screaming at the top of my lungs.
I wasn’t looking at a reflection of ours.
My brother (Alan Abad) and cousins (Ryan and Vanessa Skinner), ran home from the playground in the centre of the crescent (71 Maryvale Cr. N.E., Calgary, AB). They heard me scream. They were horrified to think something horrible had happened. But nothing did. I was alive. I wasn’t attacked or eaten by monsters. Vanessa grabbed my shoulders, shaking vigorously and I blinked slowly three times, “What. The. I…don’t know what just happened, but I think…I died and saw…a different person…in…” I couldn’t even continue. It was that bad.