I don’t know how to write about these past nine months. I don’t know how to put words to the highs and the lows, the fears and the joys, the laughter and the tears.
I haven’t blogged much this year. Maybe I was too busy focusing on school or work or friends. Or maybe I was too afraid to slow down enough to pause and reflect on what was happening.
But now I am back at Point A. I moved out of my beautiful, spacious, and creatively cluttered room in the corner of the sixth floor two days ago, and now here I am in my small, dusty, overcrowded bedroom that I grew up in trying to reconcile these two vastly different lives I’ve been living.
When I left nine months ago I cried nearly every night before I went to sleep from the deep ache of missing my home friends. This corner room on the sixth floor was too hot, too empty, too foreign.
But as the weather turned cooler and we filled our room with our belongings, this corner room of the sixth floor became familiar. The wildly curly haired girl whom I slept a few feet away from every night became a friendly face at the end of a long day. We plastered our walls in photographs and paintings and museum tickets and anything else that would tether us to a life outside that corner room. We filled our room with familiarity, creativity, candles and christmas lights- and I stopped crying before I fell asleep.
The two of us and the blonde headed hipster next door stepped out of that corner and into the center of downtown. We forced ourselves to make the city streets familiar. We walked those streets over and over and over again until we knew every crack in the pavement. We fell into the rhythm of the train and the traffic patterns. We were running with the pack now.
And when I found myself longing for someone to chill out and drink coffee with I bumped into the brown haired girl with the nervous laugh. And slowly more characters were written into my life to help me up when I fell face first onto the sidewalk, or be there to comfort me when it seemed everything was falling to pieces. I still longed for the comfort of old friends- but I began too find a new comfort in these new ones. And now when I cried I had people to cry with.
And so we ran through this city, tripping occasionally, but keeping up to pace fairly well. We chased our terrifying dreams and often fell into holes of self doubt. But we pulled each other out and kept running. We found a way to make this new life work. It wasn’t free of disappointments and rain, but we always kept a friend nearby and and umbrella in our backpack.
Then it came time to stop running. To fall out of pace with the year-round city dwellers and to start disassembling our corner of the sixth floor. We peeled off our art and photographs and memories until all that was left were empty walls with a few spots of missing paint. I said tearful goodbyes to the wildly curly haired girl and the blonde headed hipster and we left that corner of the sixth floor forever.
And now I’m here. I’ve just finished one of the hardest school years of my life both academically and personally and I’m not sure what now. I’m exhausted and confused, but my mind has never felt clearer. I miss my city people, but I’m overwhelmed with joy to see my home people. I miss the fast rhythm of downtown, but I’m basking in the ease of the slow rest of this place.
Whenever you expand the amount of world you’ve seen, going back to Point A seems smaller. And right now home seems small. I grew bigger when I was away and I don’t know if I fit here anymore. And maybe I’m not meant to fit here anymore, but for now, for the next three months, I guess I will try to keep my big growth, but also find my small peace and quiet.
Because I think I need small for a while. I think I need to hear the chirping of birds and to see the stars. I think I need to drive with friends and listen to my mom talk about the latest neighborhood gossip. It was a big year and I think it’s time for some small.