“She’s like a storm of wild horses, as they thunder across the plains. She’s like the mighty Mississippi when she’s come out of the banks. She’s a raging tornado in an Oklahoma sky. Oh I’ve never been this close to something that wild”.~Chris Cagel
When it comes to life (in general) I feel like I have a majority of it under control…mostly. I know what I want and I’m very willing to fight for it. But when it comes to the male species? Count this girl down and out. After two relationships that ended in a fiery plane crash and a handful of dead-end dates, it’s come to this.
This is a self proclaimed hiatus. One I thoroughly knew bone deep that I needed to take. While I’m thrilled for the friends who have gotten married and settled down, I’m just not there yet. Sometimes I wonder if I’ll ever be.
A friend pointed out today that I haven’t even tried to be successful in the dating aspect of my life. It was this that made me realize how right she was. I’m flighty and sometimes a bit brash. It’s always been me, never we. I’m a bit proud that I don’t want nor need someone to hold my hand as I float through towns and cities. I don’t need anyone to wish me a goodnight or good morning. But I sometimes find in those quiet moments that it would be nice to share my stories with someone. I’ve just never found that balance, how I can retain my identity when I come to open my life to someone else.
The guys before have been overbearing, insecure, and controlling. I don’t need someone to track my movements, to hold my hand, to protect me. While these guys were the farthest thing from being “the one”, I know a part of my independent rebelliousness has been the very thing to push any potentials away. So where’s the balance?
Perhaps while on this hiatus I’ll figure it out. People seem to flow so naturally in and out of dating. Settle into something new with someone new as normally as breathing. But I feel like an outsider to it all. A silent spectator just outside the line of play wondering how in the world to even begin.
I haven’t seen you in seven months and God knows how much it hurts at times. But you’re always there, a call away whenever I need you the most. You usually laugh, tell me “there’s no crying in baseball” although we both know that I’ve never played a day in my life, and somehow you’d get me to laugh through the tears. I don’t know when we transitioned from Daddy and Little Girl to Father and Daughter. How the Bambi toting five-year-old transformed into the young woman bear-hugging you in the driveway, both of us trying to figure out why goodbyes were so hard.
I remember the first time we were truly far apart. You told me to look to the sky and to pick out the brightest star. When I found it you told me that you were at home, looking at that very same star and that if I ever missed you, all I had to do was look up.
You think you’ve done a lot of wrong and I know you have regrets. But dad, you have given me the greatest gifts. I’ve inherited your adventurous spirit and insatiable wanderlust which has taught me how to chart and follow my own course. You raised me to Jimmy Buffett and trust me, because of that I know how to embrace all of those fruitcakes. You taught me how to love God. But most of all, you taught me how face fear and in spite of it how to remain true to myself. You’re my mentor, my best friend, and no matter the distance or years that come between us, I shall always love you to our northern star and back.
Up until recently, I’ve never planned for longer than a few weeks in advance. I like living with the thought that I can change everything at the drop of a hat. Quit my job, leave university, pack a suitcase and drive until the needle hits E. Since moving thirteen hundred miles away from home, I’ve had several moments where I’ve stood at that precipice.
I’ve lost count of how many times I’ve sat on the side of the highway with the windows down and my hair tied up. At the edge of town I would fiddle with the clutch as tears rolled down my cheeks. I just kept thinking how I wasn’t ready, how I couldn’t do this, I just couldn’t do any of it on my own. I was alone and drowning at sea. I would have given anything to disappear, to fall right off the map and start completely over. But time and time again I found myself pointed back towards town. In those moments, I have no idea what made me stay. Obligation? Responsibility? Guilt? Probably all three. But my decision to stay was one of the greatest I’ve ever made for myself. The people I’ve come to meet have been life changing. But the person I’ve transformed into? I can’t describe it.
For a girl who was born to run, to move, to change, I found it shocking the moment I realized that I wished to stay in this place for a few more years. Perhaps move out of my apartment and rent a small house with a yard. A friend asked me today who it was that had changed my mind. If I had met a guy over summer who had caused me to rethink my future. The truth of it all is; no I haven’t. (Boys are a talk for a different day) But truly I can’t really describe it. It’s a bit like the calm that comes after a storm, a quiet comfortable silence. Of course, my mind could change at a moments notice. After graduation I could find myself running aimlessly again. But that’s the beauty isn’t it? The not knowing and how quickly everything can change.
“Every dreamer knows that it is entirely possible to be homesick for a place you’ve never been to, perhaps more homesick than for familiar ground.” — Judith Thurman
I feel so restless. All the way down to the marrow I can feel the need to move, to run, to shed my skin and feel new. A simple breeze can stir my spirit while the summer rain sends my heart drumming against my ribcage. I want to follow my own small voice, the one that calls me across oceans and over mountains. The need to taste the air of different shores, to stand on a mountain top arms stretched out and feel for the first time infinite while at the same time being all too temporary. A fleeting moment in a world that spins to quickly.
I’ve never felt at home, the sand beneath my feet always sifting away. In the previous months I’ve seen the road narrow to a fine line in which to balance hazardously upon. A small stumble could have sent me plummeting over the edge. Yet somehow I still stand, the seemingly immovable walls now far behind me. Perhaps that’s why I now feel the need to run again. The wheels are in motion, a plan is forming, and perhaps in the not so far future I’ll find myself on a bluff overlooking the sea. Salt on my skin and smoke braided into my hair…I want to be there.