My hands tremble whenever
I have too much caffeine or
I think too much.
That is to say, they shake
often. I’d rather my hands shake than
my stomach hurt or my breath stop and start
and start and stop, without pattern. Patterns
are the calm. The circle I draw over and over on my
paper as I focus on my breathing, that 4-7-8 pattern.
In, hold, out. Rinse and repeat until it passes.
Eventually, it ends, I find the pattern, and life moves on until
the next big breakdown over nothing, or the next little thing
I, my mind, make big. I, my body, learns
to anticipate the next tremble, the next loss of breath. A pattern.
Liz Schroader is a senior studying English. After graduation, she hopes to study Library and Information Sciences.