In a year.
It’s been a year. One year since I hauled all of my stuff up three flights of stairs into this apartment only to take it up one more flight of windy spiral steps. One year, and I am preparing to do it all over, only in reverse order.
In one year I have accumulated a ton of crap. I have a stack of bills that needs shredding, and far more clothes than I moved in with. And, you can bet I have more shoes! I have stacks and stacks of books, and artwork that is new to me. I have two new scars, and lots of hand-me-down KitchenAid. I got contacts. I’ve gained a little weight and lost a little innocence. I’ve updated music, and upgraded computers. I’ve watched my bank account deflate monthly as I watch the student loans being taken out–but I would never have spent my college years differently. I’ve accumulated more life, and with that, more wisdom.
In one year I have not learned the names of my neighbors. In fact, I only know what one person living on this floor actually looks like (aside from my roommates, of course). I do not know which apartment the old lady I met during the fire lives in, although I do know where the single mom who drives the light blue Crown Victoria and has a young son who skateboards, I know where they live…or where they used to live, at least. They moved out last weekend. Someone new was taking their place today. I know there are teenagers here. Just yesterday, one was sitting on the curb by the door eating a bowl of AppleJacks with her friend–neither looked up to say hello. There’s also a young boy who plays soccer at his high school–he rides the bus, I watched him walk to the road the other day. There are two middle-aged single women who live on the first floor–they both like to drink in the middle of the afternoon on their patios. Last summer, after a huge storm, they invited me down for a beer. I didn’t go. I should have.
In a year, I have spent many a late night laughing with friends. I have graduated from college and had two jobs. I have met so many great friends–the best of friends, and I became a God Mother. I went to the concert of one of my favorite artists. I have been to five states, and I have dated four men. I haven’t fallen in love, but I haven’t fallen in hate, either. I’ve gotten drunk, and been hungover–but those get togethers were priceless! I have driven thousands of miles, and run many less. I’ve watched my niece go from a helpless little seven pound baby, to a toddler who clearly says words like Mommy and Puppy. I’ve celebrated a birthday, and been to a funeral. I watched a good friend get married, and I watched my grandparents celebrate their millionth anniversary. And it’s gone extremely fast.
It’s interesting, to me. To think about the people I have passed over the past year–the opportunities for friendship and conversation that I didn’t take, and the things I could have learned. Would my life be different, would I be on a different path, and would these people have had any affect on the person I am now if I had taken the chance to get to know them–or them, me?
What will the next year bring? Time goes far too quickly.