I roll into Seattle on I-5 and turn the radio to STAR 101.5. It’s a funny habit from high school. Macklemore’s Good Old Days serendipitously blares through the speakers. Because, well, you know, this is the city he’s singing about.
It’s been over two decades since I flew the nest and built new ones in a different country and other States, but this hometown is deeply ingrained in my blood. It’s the city that formed me and the people within who sculpted much of who I am today. The Space Needle stands tall to the west, the Cascades to the east, and I put the windows down. I
just have to. The fresh air reminds me to breathe. The feeling tells me I’m home.
Those Good Old Days … Lake Washington moonlight swims, ice cream in Kirkland, Edmonds sunsets, and endless talks with friends under the star filled sky. The faces accompanying these moments and a million more flood my memory bank, and I’m grateful for each one.
But it’s time to let go, and I’ve never been good at letting go.
My parents will soon be moving out of this city to be closer to me in Oregon and my brother in New York. Yay for us! But my childhood home will be up for sale, and I’m realizing this is bitter sweet.
I turn the music higher and live the words:
Never thought we’d get old, maybe we’re still young
Maybe you always look back and think it was better than it was
Maybe these are the moments
Maybe I’ve been missin’ what it’s about
Been scared of the future, thinkin’ about the past
While missin’ out on now
We’ve come so far, I guess I’m proud, and I ain’t worried ’bout the wrinkles ’round my smile
I’ve got some scars, I’ve been around
I’ve felt some pain, I’ve seen some things, but I’m here now … Someday soon, your whole life’s gonna change
You’ll miss the magic of these good old days
And then my three-year-old, of course, wakes me from my thinking to tell me it’s too windy. I roll the windows up and smile at the little one who reminds me to live in the moment amidst the messes she gloriously makes.
That 17-year-old girl who flew the nest has learned a thing or two on life’s journey, and the magic of these good old days is not lost on me. Time is a sacred gift that can’t be paused, but the seconds turn into minutes, hours, days and years, and that becomes our life.
What we do with our seconds matters, and I’m fully here now.
Grateful for what was, living fully in the present and hopeful for every tomorrow preciously granted.
My blood will always run blue and green, that’s just a fact. But I’m letting go and loving my here-and-now life. And I will be back. Often.