Yeah, I know you’ve technically already heard from me today. Oh well. I wrote that yesterday and posted it really early this morning, so it doesn’t count.
You wanna know where I am? You wanna know? Take a guess. I haven’t been here since August 20th.
You might have guessed. I’m sitting on my very own bed (which feels very near to the ground after sleeping on a bed with risers for so long) with a cup of coffee that matches the walls around me. My daddy is in the kitchen, within yelling distance, since he came home early to work at home. My mom is downstairs, a short 14 stairs away.
Oh, I’ve missed this.
Independence is great. I love living on my own in the city and being responsible for myself on a daily basis. That’s my daily life now. But it’s a real treat to have someone take care of me. And I’m not even sick.
Our society really values independence, don’t we? I feel like every ad campaign is directed towards showing me how this product will make me more capable, give me an ability to do more. And if I can do more, then I need people less, right? We go to school so that we can get jobs and be independent, right?
Or maybe that’s not the goal. Maybe that’s a lie that we’re being fed.
I’m sure more qualified and thoughtful people have written more in-depth and longer and more Biblical and all around better things about this, but I’m just thinking about it today in relation to how my day’s gone.
I was so independent this morning. For real. I rolled my two suitcases and carried my backpack (packed independently, AND I figured out when I needed to leave and how to get to the airport by myself) to the Kimball station – about 3 blocks. Then I proceeded to try to get all my suitcases and myself through the turnstiles (morning brain… the caffeine wasn’t in my bloodstream yet) and got stuck.
Okay, so maybe not totally independent. A nice man came and showed me that by collapsing the handle of my suitcase I could fit it under bars, thus freeing me from my incredibly embarrassing position.
Well, I’ll never see them again, I’m sure.
From there on out, though, I was really independent. I transferred trains all by myself. I mean, I sort of followed people into Midway, but I read the signs too, so I knew where we were going. I checked my bags at the correct airline desk and got through security fairly smoothly. I mean, I did have to go to the bathroom pretty badly from the time I got onto the orange line of the L til after security, but there aren’t any bathrooms at Midway until you get through security, so there’s no way around that. And I did put my fleece zip-up on top of my laptop in the security bin, which is apparently a no-no. Needs to go in a separate bin by itself without anything above or below it. But that’s just because I’ve never travelled with a laptop before.
I didn’t freak out when I was picked for a random shoe test. I just stood there waiting ever so patiently, while preparing to run to the nearest bathroom as soon and I was cleared of having bombs in my Skechers. (really? do I look like a bomb threat to you?)
Jesus is really nice to me. I mean, for real. Security took at least 45 minutes, something I hadn’t thought would take so long (and neither had all the people around me either, apparently) so after I had visited the nearest restroom, I got to my gate just as my section was boarding. Perfect timing, Jesus.
After that I was totally independent until I rolled my luggage out to the car. There I got in the passenger seat and was driven to lunch. Paid for (thanks, Mom), and taken home.
Even through all these experiences where I was on my own, I still needed that guy in the Kimball station to help me figure out the turnstiles. (I have no idea where I’d be right now if it weren’t for him.) My smartphone can tell me how to get somewhere, but it can’t give me practical advice about how to not get stuck. When I’m having a bad day, I can’t just smile at myself and make my own day.
(can you do that? I’d like to know if that’s possible.)
Somehow, doing yourself a favor never feels as nice as having one done for you or doing one for someone else. We weren’t meant to go it alone.
And that’s probably why it feels so good to be back here, to be back in my support system of familiarity, to be in my childhood bedroom (I’ve been in here since I was a baby… well, I should say I’ve slept here since then) where I don’t have to wash dishes in the bathroom.
I’m about to see if I still remember how to drive. I’ll let you know if that goes badly.