When I turned 30, I sat down to write. I thought I'd write about life and everything I still don't know about it or haven't experienced. I started to write about the shame I feel not having been in a long term relationship. Let my weepy heart weep! But it was like trying to force yourself to cry when the tears just aren't there. The shame just wasn't there, wasn't prevalent. What was prevalent? Eagerness. That's what I feel most. An incredible eagerness for life, for what's to come, and a gladness for what's been. Life astounds me. The process. How delicate and hardy it is. I'm astounded by all the things I'll never know. But hey, here's a start.
I know what it’s like to be young.
To win a gold medal. To pee in my pants. Ride a horse. Pee in my pants while riding a horse. Get lice. Break an arm. Ride a bike. Do a handstand. Climb a tree. Make a fool of myself. Be loved. Be cherished. Feel grace. Feel wonder.
I know what it’s like to have great friends. To have blood sisters. To bind myself in absolute and fret going off to college in ten years time.
I know what it’s like to fight. To forgive. To move on.
I know what it’s like to forge a new path.
To leave family, to move away from friends, to walk down damp new streets.
I know what it’s like to be brave.
I know what it’s like to explore.
To feel the splash of the sea salt on an early morning beneath soaring cliffs and squawking fruit bats. To dive in the calm. The slow inhale and exhale of bubbles.
I know what it’s like to get lost in a city eat strange fruits dance until the sun comes up jump a flaming rope swim in hot rivers hold a sloth sky dive over mountains smell a volcano pluck leeches from my ankles stare at the stars sleep among the shrieks of hyenas, among lions, among elephants.
I know the cold of a buss station floor in the dead of night. The stench.
I know what it’s like to be threatened. To be mugged.
I know what it’s like to be scared.
I know what its like to grow older and feel younger. To throw a party. To eat cake.
To write a poem cry into a book to love to envy to kiss to miss for far too long. To be alone. To be embraced.
I know what it’s like to be alive and to slowly awaken. To unravel.