Jen Michalski

Available Now

You'll Be Fine (2021; NineStar Press)

"An enjoyable story about an adult trying to grow up"
Kirkus Reviews

Selected, "Best Books We Read This Year (2021)”— Independent Book Review

Coming Soon

The Company of Strangers
(2022; Braddock Avenue Books)

Just Do It

I dreamed last night that I had brain cancer. I underwent some radiation, but the malignancy was diffuse, kind of like the photo. I was referred to the fictitious "John F. Kennedy Hospital" in DC to undergo surgery by "the Germans," who were apparently good at this thing. My German, a slightly plump man with salt and pepper hair, dark upward curled eyebrows, generous lips, and glasses, asked me about advance care directives. I responded that I didn't want to be on a respirator and that no heroic measures should be taken. When I asked my German about my overall and disease-free survival, he shrugged his shoulders.

I don't believe I have brain cancer. When I think about dreams like this, I think about time. Could I leave my life tomorrow satisfied, even though the novel's not finished, I've never been to Tokyo, and I haven't surfed? I think about how utterly un-spontaneous and frugal I am, saving money rather than planning on nice vacations or cable. I think my lack of spontaneity, in my mind, is an acknowledgment of how little time I have, how much there is left to do, how there's no time to eff around. Although I'm sure others would think differently.