As my plane took off for Southern California a single tear rolled down my cheek. My former life was becoming a memory, and I had to honor who I had once been. Some days I miss her fire and passion as I live in a constant state of restlessness.

Recently my fickle ways have returned. I no longer desire deep or meaningful conversation. Intellectual thoughts float around my mind like clouds on a lazy summer day, but concentration on these thoughts is exhausting. My inability to focus on meaningful content became evident as I studied for my trip.

I was nervous and traveled with an agenda of current affairs, interesting conversation topics, questions, and good general talking points. As my plane landed a wave of calm washed over my body as if I had been here before, as if nothing mattered.

Shocked, I tried to cultivate nervousness because being calm made me feel faintly awkward. The more I moved around an unfamiliar space the calmer I became. Mystified, I could not sleep for the entire three nights of my trip. I lay awake contemplating all the places I had been, all of my experiences. Confused, I found it hard to eat. Perplexed, I stared out of the window unable to make meaningful conversation. I was so comfortable I felt guilty.

Mesmerized, I saw a side of me that I was unaware existed. Captivated, I felt the tension leave my body. Hypnotized, I appreciated the fleeting seconds of my life. How could time stand still and rush by simultaneously? Fascinated, I started to understand what an exit from darkness meant.

For three glorious days all of my flaws disappeared, or I failed to notice them. The freedom I experienced to just be was incredible. Always the planner, always the conversationalist, always the nervous one, I became a person I had not ever bothered to meet.

Many of my flaws have returned. I have retreated back into my cave. But as my plane headed back to Austin I uttered three words that are easily said for others but rarely for me. “I love you.”

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