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Ready or Not, Here I Come
Dedicated to My hubby, our marriage & lost souls
Submitted by Anonymous
I was concerned about checking all of my "non-TSA approved" toiletries, but it's Wednesday, we leave Saturday morning, and at this point, I'm moving on. Other things need to be done, and I'm just ready to be back in Hawaii.
Or am I? Twenty-odd years ago I was there, finishing elementary school; a few years later I was waving aloha after my first year of high school, heading back to the mainland. As with every military move, a new chapter in my life awaited.
Life was full of opportunities then; looking back, I've missed out on some biggies. Don't get me wrong, I'm grateful for what I consider to be a good life, but finishing school, college, graduate school and getting a job all in sequence feels like having followed a script. I never headed south for spring break or backpacked through Europe post-college. Grad school came "logically" next. Moving was not unlike the military family moves of my youth – that's where the job is? Then go. I still have the same job. And yes, I married…
Our trip to Hawaii is scheduled around our 5th anniversary. We married soon after 9/11, and you may know something of the perspective you get on life and your expectations after an event like that. I pictured weekends as – outdoor warriors! We'd camp, hike and bike, with some kind of animal shelter rescued dog alongside! I wanted to sing songs around a campfire with our kids while he played his guitar. I wanted us to volunteer as a family. I wanted other things, but recalling those dreams hurts more than others.
Nearly five years later, there's no dog. The tent is barely used. We're getting better – bikes were finally bought this spring – but after spending much of the early years on our own activities, it's tough some days to remember what brought us together. We fluctuate on having a family, and as time passes more self-doubts creep in. The guitar sits dusty in a corner, the lessons dropped long ago.
Life is still full of opportunity, and this trip will separate us from things that interfere with us tuning into what we really want for ourselves and our marriage – not just what either of us imagined years ago, but whatever it is we want now. I'm tired of feeling like life's slipping by, and not expecting to find all of the answers, but I could use something.
And so this trip scares me sometimes.
I hope that in reflection at a heiau, meditation in a rainforest, or even walking along a crowded beach we find a moment of clarity or inspiration to move in some direction.
Coming home, I wonder how I'll feel compared to when I left the first time.
In five years, maybe we'll be singing that hukilau song with a couple of little ones back in Hawaii. Or maybe it will be just the two of us biking around one of the islands.
We don't know, but maybe Hawaii does.