I recently finished the book Places I Stopped on the Way Home and found it deeply powerful. Inspired by Meg (I mean it when I say that this is the deep, heart wrenching, incredible book I’d like to write one day), I decided to write about five of my own “places I stopped.” I picked a place or a thing or an experience, set a timer for five minutes, and wrote. As I wrote, some themes emerged. Without further ado, here’s an incomplete list of places I stopped on the way home.
When I was cleaning, I found the jar in a box of things from senior year of college. I remember writing the words ‘adventure fund’ in pink Sharpie in my single dorm senior year, sticking the label carefully onto the jar from IKEA. I’m sure I thought it was going to go to pay for great things: plane tickets abroad or a hotel on the beach, maybe drinks at a busy pub in Europe. As I picked through the coins, searching for quarters to take back to Los Angeles so that I could do my laundry, I thought about how 21 year old me might have found that fact a little bit sad. And then I stopped myself.
A year ago today, I slipped off my shoes at security, placed my laptop in a tray, and walked through the metal detector. I waved goodbye to my dad and my sister, tried to keep it together until I could get my things back in order, and rounded the corner to the gate, trying not to cry.