Adolescence

When I met you, I was huddled on the couch, and you would spend an hour persuading me to put my feet on the floor. Or just to unfurl enough to take a breath.

Later, we opened rooms, forbidden ordinary rooms, terrifying harmless rooms. An hour was enough, for those domestic journeys. After an hour I needed to rest.

One day you took me into the attic, and we looked out of the dusty windows together, and I saw the horizon for the first time in many years. And I wanted it.

Now I return to you after voyages of discovery, show you my shells and the tentacle marks on my arm from the giant squid. Show you on the map where I fell down the well and couldn’t get out for many days, until I remembered how you taught me to climb the ladder to the attic.

I think there are people out there. I’ve seen the smoke from their camp fires. I’ve heard them singing at night.

An hour isn’t anywhere near enough. Not for the discoveries and the triumphs, not for the dark places I ran from, the fears that turned me away from approaching the camp fires. So now I have to choose. No longer the simplicity of just the couch, and the floor, and my feet.

I know now that hour isn’t supposed to be enough. I shouldn’t fit into it, and I shouldn’t wish for it to expand. I am supposed to outgrow it, and take my stories and my scars and my fears and the view to that horizon out in to a much larger space.

This is adolescence. I’m not ready to leave. But I’m ready to start wanting to.

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