Happy Valentine’s Day!
[thanks to alyssa and heather for announcing my single-ness to my building. the boys across the hall especially enjoyed that]
Contrary to my foil-embedded fortune implying that I’m destined to spend a chubby life alone with chocolate, today was lovely and wonderful things happened. And yes, I have a valentine. We’ve never actually spoken in real life and he’s probably not aware that we’re destined to be married [or maybe that I even exist]…but I think it’ll work out just swell.
My favorite things were the ones that were unrelated to any February Holidays—things that reminded me of the ocean and the beach and sunshine. Because even from several states away, my mom always knows what I need. Like eyeshadow with a hue smack dab in the middle of green and blue. Just like the ocean.
And a note, reminding me of who I left behind—who’s really important in my life.
That’s right—CAT misses me!
The whole thing deterred me from thinking about V-Day and made me wish I was on a beach with my family, leaving me carving more surfboards out of soap bars. There’s a possibility that my roommates may have thought I was weird/crazy when they walked in and found me with the window open, letting in the icy wind and furiously using a paring knife and a carrot peeler to brutally attack a helpless bar of soap, transforming it into something representative of better days.
It led me back to being nostalgic about Florida. I made a mental clarification—that “Florida” isn’t really just the state. It’s the whole package—the memories, the feelings, the events, the people. It’s the life I had there that I can never, ever have again [though that doesn’t stop me from trying to recreate it].
Feeling like a huge mental hurricane was about to hit, I escaped up the hill to my cousins’ house and decided to put my mental restlessness to good use.
I put all my energy into making dough into perfect circles, making tangible things come together perfectly while surveying the disarray in my head. Day dreaming of things that might have happened, things that can never happen, and things that will absolutely happen…someday. I don’t know why I find comfort in remembering the way things were, because things weren’t always good in Florida. But for some reason creating an alternate universe, where home is still Florida and my parents are still married and Jada’s still here, is such a great escape. I spent most of my life creating ideas about what my life was going to be like—about getting married in Florida or spending summers on 25th Court. It’s hard to let so many years of dreams go. It’s hard to find new dreams when there’s no foundation, no backdrop to set them against. There’s nothing certain about my life or my future, and I’m not at a point where that’s exciting yet.
So for now I’m content to remember. To remember the way it feels to dive into a pool in the summer, the water bringing relief to your skin stretched tight by the heat of the sun. To remember the time that Jace and I stole a stop sign, the time Dusty and Kevin and I threw TVs out of the bed of a truck onto residential streets. To be content just replaying those memories in my mind now, having that be enough for today.
I don’t dislike my life now, and I’m sure there will come a time when it will be fun to look back on these days—to relish in the memories I’m making that I’m not even aware of. But it’s easier to indulge in memories that I know are good, ones that I already love.
So I have no real conclusions about what’s good, what’s bad, or what’s unhealthy. I’m still trying to figure out why the grass is greener on the other side. I’ll let you know when I’ve figured out the answers to life’s deepest questions. It might take a while.
I did have a really exciting weekend that I’ll be recounting in the coming days. One where I was barefoot and in shorts [because I went somewhere warm, not because I’m crazy]. Be excited. Because I am.
[Title from Mr. Right by A Rocket to the Moon]