My bags are packed,
I’m ready to go.
…I’m leavin’ on a jet plane,
Don’t know when I’ll be back again.
Landlady aside, I’ve said my last goodbyes.
Studying abroad is ending just as I’ve really found my stride–like suddenly the escalator I’ve been ascending has reversed its direction and, despite my best efforts and exertions, I’m descending again. Not back into a life less meaningful or joyful, but back into a life that has undoubtedly evolved in my absence, just as my absence has led to detectable changes in me.
The greatest part of this experience has most certainly been me. Meeting me, reacquainting myself with me, realizing that I like me for, well, me. Not for me as defined by my family or my friends or my surroundings. Me, in my head, listening to the person who needs me more than anyone else.
My first few days, fraught with emotion, were most necessary in coming to that conclusion. Because I had only myself, for once, and now for always.
I am resolved to treat my return as another study abroad opportunity. All too often, I fail to lose my breath as I walk through Polk Place or take for granted the people who actually want to spend time with me–even over-analytical, sentimental me. When I come back, I am planning Southern road trips and long, homemade dinners and moments of bliss so profound in their simplicity that I will, even if only for an iota, be able to live presently. And, again, I will remind myself:
I urge you to please notice when you are happy, and exclaim or murmur or think at some point, “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.”
– Kurt Vonnegut
In other news, I learned this morning that I won another contest courtesy of Twitter. This news is relevant because the prize will assist me in catering to my desire for all those “long, homemade dinners.” I won a Dutch oven, among other fun, meal-related accessories.
Sour tempered with sweet, as always.