How I imagined my twenty-fourth birthday?
Well, I'd be sitting on my front porch in a comfy chair, and all my friends and family would surround me there. I'd be sippin on an apple martini with my two beautiful children sitting next to me. Maybe the youngest one in dad's arms as she lacked the motor skills to do it her own. I look out at the world there in front of me, taking in and enjoying all that I could see. A neighbor walks by says how do you do and I know them enough to wave and smile in return. I've got two cars in the drive way that run and drive, no issues in their motors, stickers just fine. I'd be polished and tight everything in line, hair done up not a flyaway in sight. My gorgeous husband would come over to me, whisper I'm the greatest thing he's ever seen. We'd sneak away to talk when the party lulled, muse on how our life had unfurled. Not some Greek tragedy all covered in knots, but comfort and warmth, and worrying for not. Bills are paid, and college funds made, and we've got enough stashed for a year of rainy days. Christmas plans are made for the south coast, simple sure, but we're not ones to boast. Happy and healthy and not a collection agency in site, as we tuck the kids in and whisper good night. Make love like we were newly discovered, hold each other hours after we're done. Wake up and ready myself, kiss the husband good bye, take the kids to the park.
How simple I thought life would be, when these fantasies came to me. So young, so naive, so sure of myself - before everything started plummeting south.
I don't know why I hold on to these ghosts, these never could have beens. It's the light at the end, it's the hope that unfurls, it's what keeps me afloat I suppose...
Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sings the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,
And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.
I've heard it in the chillest land
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.
- Emily Dickinson