Quoted: my dad, as I was giving him one of the many goodbye hugs.
What a thing to say, right? But, I knew what he meant. He wasn’t giving me a sassy word, as I would give to those people on the unfortunate show “My Sweet Sixteen.” The ones who get a brand new car for their 16th birthday and it’s the wrong color, or it’s not the right car, or, God forbid, their parents gave them the car at the wrong time – “I wanted my car AFTER my party, MOM! UUGggHHHhHHHEhehhehhhuugg” To them, I often want to say, “oh, I’m sorry your life is SO WONDERFUL, boo-fuckin-hoo.”
That’s not what my dad was meaning when he said that. He was commenting on the fact that on the day I was leaving on this adventure, I was crying. A lot. It’s like when people say “how lucky am I to have something/someone that makes it so hard to say goodbye.” In fact, that’s exactly what it is.
How lucky am I to have the community of friends and family that I have – one that supports my wild decisions, and encourages risk taking. One that inspires adventure. One that comes over the night before my flight to drink champagne, and have a dance party in the living room that turns into a cuddle-puddle on my couch. How lucky am I to have these people, this love in my life that makes saying goodbye, even for only a few months, so damn heartbreaking.
Shout-out to them for all that they do (you know who you are).
The other part of that is the adventure on the other side of the goodbyes. I’m scared of this journey. I’m nervous. I’m a lot of things. But, what a wonderful thing to be scared of.
What a wonderful thing to be scared of; what an incredible community to miss.
I sit on a bus in London, watching cars drive by on what looks to me like the wrong side of the road. The sky is grey and I haven’t peed since being in the US. Or brushed my teeth (benefits of traveling solo: no one close enough to smell my breath). Aside from an occasional wave of nerves about catching my next flight, I feel lucky and absolutely grateful for such a wonderful life.
There’s no need to be sorry, Daddy. It’s quite alright.