I have been facing uncertainty about the future, whether to return to Istanbul and live a life that is wonky, interesting, exciting, reckless (choose your own adjective), or whether to stay in Portland. My mom and brother, who are used to me being adventurous, expressed concern about me going back. I have a small yet strong family, but our small size also makes us vulnerable, like surviving copies of the Gutenberg Bible. I can't put my family's compactness and rarity in peril just because I feel like traipsing off to Istanbul.
Last week I had a dream that felt like a slap in the face. Donald Trump was chasing my family and me around the Grand Canyon. I should mention that before the chase scene, my dream was carefree. I was soaking in valuable writing advice from a Swedish author and she gave me my very own Swedish writer name. Agnes Larsson or something like that. She told me I was destined to become the greatest author Sweden had ever known. Then the dream cut to the Grand Canyon and the Swedish author/mentor disappeared. My mom and brother and I came to a cluster of peaks spaced like keys on a giant type writer. Trump was having a fit as he chased us and we were really scared. Looking back, I don't know why we didn't just push him in the Grand Canyon. But we had to get away from him and the only way to do that was to jump from peak to peak. My mom and brother went first, landing painfully on their stomachs. They instructed me to do the same. They said the rocks were slippery and if I tried to land on my feet, I would slip and fall into the abyss. I was too afraid to land on my stomach, so I ignored their advice. I landed on my feet and fell into the canyon. I died. No Swedish novelist career for me. And my family was down one person.
I woke up with a gasp, thinking the solution was simple. I should stay in Portland. But then, just like landing on a jagged rock on my stomach, I decided that's not what I wanted either. I'm going back to Istanbul. And hopefully everything will be fine. And hopefully, I'll land on my feet, no matter how clumsy my jumps are and no matter how close Trump is to catching me in a chase around the Grand Canyon.