I mentioned in my previous post, Wherever You Go, You Take Yourself With You, that my friend Alanna and I had started doing some mini-writing workshops to help get our creative juices flowing, and I thought I’d share another product of one of our sessions on the blog. This one was in response to the prompt: “What’s the greatest adventure you wish to have in your life?”
There’s the moment I wake up with the Caribbean sun warming my face and a sea breeze making the sheer curtains gently sway. You’re still beside me, in a tangle of sheets and limbs. And I’m imagining the day ahead — maybe sailing on the crystalline blue waters or swimming in a hidden pool of fantastic jewel tones or hiking to the top of a mountain to look out at this vast world that seems so exotic but also so familiar.
But we could also just lie here in bed all day or read a book under an umbrella, the sun shifting around us from noon to night. It could also be a rocky hill in Greece or a snowy mountain in the Alps. Riding an elephant in India or exploring the dusty bookshelves of a centuries old library in London. It’s not so much the exact place we’re at. Or the exact activity we’re doing. It’s the adventure of the unknown.
It’s me looking at you from across the room and knowing you’re my person. It’s you reaching out a hand like those gloriously cheesy Instagram photos and asking me to come with you. It’s being just reckless enough to say yes. It’s for once in my life, not worrying about the future more than “How life-filled can we make this day?” And the next. And the next. On and on until we are old and grey and you still look at me and bite your lip to try to hide your smile.
The adventure has never been the place. It has always been you.
My immediate thought when considering “adventure” is almost always traveling to exotic places. There’s so much of the world I haven’t experienced, and I’ve had the dull ache of longing to see a world beyond my own tiny sliver of it for as long as I can remember. (Honestly, I have identified with Disney Princesses far too much to feel comfortable.)
But when I started writing, I realized that all my ideas of “adventures” were not so much about what I was doing (though hiking mountains and laying on tropical beaches sounds amazing!), but rather the idea of experiencing the world with another person.
I’ve talked a lot over the last few months post-break-up about realizing my desire for a partner in life. Sharing these thoughts has come in part because I thought I had one, but our relationship ultimately ended because we had very different ideas about what being a partner meant. And while talking about the desire for partnership might seem a little sad or desperate to some, for me, it’s actually a bit of a celebration because for years I held the belief that I was unlovable and too damaged to deserve someone wanting to spend their life with me. So wanting a partner and accepting that someone could actually want to be my partner in return, is kind of a big step for me!
So when I write about wanting love, wanting a partner, it’s also me saying, “I deserve love” which has been a hard thing for me to internalize for a long time, even while in a relationship with my ex for 5 years! I was always under the impression that I didn’t deserve his or anyone’s love and was waiting for the other shoe to drop. But as I’ve started to realize that many of the problems that led to our end were not my fault, it’s also been a journey to accepting and wanting love.
Partnership is as much of an adventure as sailing the seven seas, and I’d like to fill this life with as much adventure as possible.