It was midnight.
Tiptoeing past my parents’ bedroom, I paused, hoping to hear the sounds of their heavy slumber, hoping the rustling of my coat would not wake them.
I needed a smoke.
I let myself out. All that awaited me was a frosty field, quiet, and landscape cloaked in moonlight. The cloud of my steady breath was my only companion. Finding a seat on the bed of my father’s pickup truck, I lit a cigarette, and let my bones settle for the first time in a long while. The absence of sound was a strange comfort; it matched the stillness of the broad horizon before me.
I imagined myself in it.
Where I am going. What I am leaving behind. Why I won’t look back. How hard it will be.
Looking around at the wooded acres where I grew up, I realized that I am on the cusp of my own emancipation. Loss has afforded me the freedom to continue to pursue the path that my imagination is beckoning me to follow. Courage and resolve will come, soon after. I will leave restlessness behind.
With all of these revelations slowly swirling in an endless waltz in my head, I took the last drag of my smoke, and headed inside.
I knew I would sleep well that night, under a bright moon.