In two days, at this hour, I will be aboard an airplane en route to Moscow, ultimately bound for New York City, where my boyfriend will be waiting to take me home.
Home. I haven’t seen my parents or siblings in three months, but that isn’t anything new. I’ve gone just as long during the months I’ve been at school–or even longer during the summers I stayed in Boston to work. I miss them, sure, and my boyfriend and friends as well. But every minute that passes I wonder if I’m ready to go home.
It’s closing in on the end of the year, so naturally I’ve begun thinking about where I was at the beginning of 2013. Well, I was traveling in an old Honda Civic with one of my best friends across the southern belt of America. It’s odd to think, I spent the first month and the last three months of this year doing very different kinds of traveling–both for the first time in my life. It’s set a very high standard for the rest of my years, for certain.
But I bring this up because towards the end of the road trip, and for a few days after I returned to Boston, I felt a great disappointment that the adventure had ended. I had adjusted to life continually on the move, and whatever discomforts living out of a car posed were nothing compared to the feeling of freedom I was experiencing for the first time. I could live out of a single backpack, I had proved to myself, for a month–which meant I could do it for a whole lot longer if I needed to. All of the other things I had collected over the years, I realized, I could simply leave behind.
That was easy. It was going back to that apartment, filled with stuff, that was a shock. And, of course, going back to work and school full time–though I found that last semester to be more rewarding than the entirety of my aggregated college experience up to that point.
But whatever dismay I was feeling from getting off the road was quickly displaced by grief. After the first day of classes, I found out that my best friend from childhood had committed suicide, and since then, that’s what every feeling I had for the rest of the year was about. If I was sad, I was doubly sad, because I missed her. If I screwed something up, it was two-fold because I had also let her down.
Even when I was happy, my smile would always turn into a sad one, wishing she could have been there to share the joy. “If there had only been moments like this,” I would think to myself, “maybe she wouldn’t have left like she did.”
These thoughts are debilitating, I know, but I have them none the less.
Getting back to my point–I’m about to leave Lebanon, after three months on a kind of solitary writer’s retreat, to go back to that place–so filled will stuff and outlined in memories. I’ll have to start applying for jobs and paying student loans and, for a short time at least, start living with my parents again, in a room that I’ve never lived in filled with boxes–some of which I haven’t seen since high-school.
It won’t be so bad. I’m already planning to leave in June, for the west coast again, this time fore a more permanent move. But nothing is really permanent–not for me anyway. I’ve got to keep moving.
There are some things I just can’t let catch up with me.