This is the Moment

December 29Defining Moment Describe a defining moment or series of events that has affected your life this year.

(This post was written in the end of December, but due to some computer issues, it was not posted.  It has been backdated to reflect when it should have been posted.)

There were so many moments in this terrible year that I could point to and say “THAT.” And you would probably know exactly what I am talking about.

And in the alternative, there were so many joyful moments too.

This long and rotten year led up to one crystal clear moment, in a taxi, headed to the airport on Christmas Eve, when it suddenly struck me that I was off to a country where I knew virtually no one; had very few solid plans; and did not really speak the language.

Mind you, I have traveled alone before.  And I have even traveled alone in places where I do not speak the language.

But traveling in those places is different when you are on a schedule; when you have a plan; and oh yeah, you have a private driver.

I suppose the aloneness factor was relative, then.

But how glorious a moment it was, passing over the Robert F. Kennedy (nee Triboro) Bridge and into Queens, knowing that the things I had been telling myself, and the world were actually true.  I am enough for me.  I am enough for now.  I can do this on my own.

We all say these things — these life-affirming things — to ourselves, all the time; I am sure it is not just me whispering them to myself and to the universe.  And we should say these things.  Because they are true.  But it is those rare moments of…proof…that are so fleeting, so hard to find, so viciously ephemeral.  And they are impossible to predict; capture; affirm.

This year, then, was framed by the sun behind me; the BQE ahead, with me looking down at my tattered leggings and my zip-up cardigan; running my hands along the well-worn straps of my beloved bright orange backpack and reciting the things I have said a thousand and one times, I can do this on my own, and knowing deep in my heart, surrounded by proof, that the words were true.

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