On the Eve of December

1 Dec

I’m listening to (George Winston’s) December.  Remembering snow falling near Pearson’s Hall at Beloit College, and all the feelings that come at 20.  Now, twenty years later, my oldest daughter tells me she scored in the 97th percentile on her GREs, and my youngest daughter struggles to say “peent” when she wants to put on her smock and fleck colors on paper.

I woke up the other day feeling old, then asked myself when we got to be young at 40.  I remembered in the ’80s, my mom and dad having birthday celebrations with their friends with black and white balloons and cards that said Lordy Lordy Look Who’s 40!  And, not so long ago, 40 meant polyester pants and hair that was curled like the strands ate the rollers beneath them.  And now it’s odd for me to wake up feeling like I’m a different person than what I’ve always been, and that somehow I lost something good and wholesome and meaningful along the way.  And something that made me cool and unique and the only one capable of experiencing precisely what I was at the moment.

I’m listening to George Winston’s December, and remembering that feeling.  Like you’ve sucked all the air into your lungs and breathed in life and its enormity, and the core of existence, and you’re the only who knows.  And you want to heave it all out, too, and let the world know.  But you also know you’re the only one who’ll ever know.

You were almost right.  It’s just you, and the one who remembers.

Nah, it really was always only you.


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