I miss living in a place where I could theoretically see almost any landscape on any given day. The beach was a bus ride or a long walk. The same with a mountain. There was something akin to forested swamp land a half hour away by car. I lived in a valley.
I miss being able to go to the store at 10 at night or study flash cards outside Starbucks at 6 in the morning.
I miss being able to sit on my desk and stick my feet out the window. I miss being able to pour water out of it when there were too many half empty bottles around. Waking up and watching the sunrise on the ridge, stargazing from my bed, hula hooping in my room, mixing over-seasoned fish with unseasoned rice and having it all turn out right– these are all good memories.
There are some tough things behind me, too.
I missed birthdays, births, funerals. I missed times when I should have been with my family.
I missed my own bed. I missed my mother’s hugs. I missed my sisters. I missed my father’s presence. I missed some of the dreams I had about the future I found myself living.
The past is not a home to return to. It is a combination of points– origin points and check points– that one has survived. It is hills and valleys and the last moment– not far enough in your rear-view mirror to categorize. The past is a thing to be remembered honestly and learned from; it is not to be longed for or lived twice.