As the chill in the outside air grew colder and everyone around me bundled up. As the colors of the leaves began their last marvelous show and everything became pumpkin flavored, I knew it was time. The date of expiration was nearing me. I remember the issue date, or to a 16 year old me, the best day on planet earth. Though I was sneezing and coughing and had the worst kind of flu, nothing could rain on my parade. After the nerves settled and I managed to park the car back in the lot, I knew that I finally earned my ticket to the freedom my 16 year old self so desperately desired. I ran inside, and with a nod of my head a mob of screaming, hugging, and excited family members surrounded me. I had the largest smile any human could have produced and that smile stared up at me until my 21st birthday this year. Something I also remember thinking about that day was the big, bold expiration date listed at the bottom of my pink ticket to freedom. I remember thinking of the year 2014 as if it was a land far far away, a time so distant and so unattainable I had no idea what the world had in store for me. Of course I had the bigger questions of things like, would my country still be in war, how would technological advances affect the children of the time and would we be able to cure cancer, but lets my honest here I was 16 so I mostly thought about me. I remember spending hours upon hours attempting to imagine what exactly the world would be like for me in the intimidating, far off year of 2014. Right before I went to go exchange that picture of a doe eyed child for an adult woman, I was forced to reflect on the time spent between issue and expiration. At the ripe age of 16 I would not in a million years have pictured my life how it is today. I would not have seen any of it coming. The struggle of losing my grandfather with such speed in knocked us all off our feet. The way my mother and father can now be in the same establishment and even shake hands. The car I am driving, the place that I work and the nearing end of my college experience. I would not have foreseen the loss of some friendships and the making of new glorious ones. The meeting of the love of my life and my very best friend. That by the time the expiration date grew close I was planning a June wedding and looking forward to the challenges and adventures life has in store for a 21 year old me. At 16 I had the world at my feet, no fear in my eyes or dreams that were too big. And, while some realities of the world have set in as I am crossing over into my 21st year, I am proud that I still have large dreams and an optimistic outlook on life. The things that I have accomplished in those years between those bold dates make me proud. The things I have in store for my future, the goals and dreams I am working toward achieving and the understanding that there is no way I can predict what my life will be like between issue and expiration makes be believe that in some distant universe where time is endlessly existing, I have made my 16 year old self very proud.
I lay here on this leather couch, the sun just set, the stars are rising in the sky. The light from the moon begins to slowly spill through the open shutters and the room becomes filled, ocean deep in a soft glow. We lay together, you and me, just the way it works best. There we are, smothered in moonlight in that quiet room clinging to each other, too afraid of what would happen if we let go. If I open my eyes will you have just been a sweet and perfect dream? The kind of dream that leaves you breathless, the kind that takes you hours to separate from? Will the long walks by the river and the warm summer sunsets drift away like all my other dreams. If I breathe too loudly will I blow all of this away like a child blows a freshly picked dandelion in the summer time, will you have just been my single wish? If I blink will our lives flash before me too rapidly for me to stop it? Will I flash forward and miss all this life has to offer us? If I fall asleep will I wake to us in our old age laying in the warn in, butter cream sheets in the home we have had for 50 years? We cling to each other because we are too afraid of what would happen if we let go. My breath begins to quicken and I feel your grasp on me grow tighter, are you thinking of this too? I want to sink in the cold,crisp ocean with you, and drink the tartest wine in Italy, I want to get a sunburn in the Caribbean and never stop holding your hand. I want to fall asleep under the perfect set of stars, and dance in the middle of the street, no street in particular, just about all of them. I want to smell your cologne on your neck and run away to Paris for awhile. I want our laughter to fill the quiet streets on a cold night, I want to get lost in the jungle and, meet every member of your family. I want to build a million tents and see a million places and be with only you. I have a full life planned for you and I, don’t let me go.
“Traveling- it makes you speechless and then turns you into a storyteller” – Ibn Battuta
I miss Scotland and I miss traveling. Currently working away in school and missing adventures. The next one is to NYC for the ball drop. Here I come.