Here’s the thing about boxing up every single one of your belongings, watching movers load them up in a truck, handing over your apartment keys, and selling your car: it leaves you in a bit of a vagrant position. So my parents graciously gave Jane and me a place to stay until we leave for New York.
Leaving my little apartment, looking out my bedroom window over the magenta crepe myrtles and bright blue pool for the last time, was bittersweet. Selling my little white civic to a car dealer at the last minute before leaving Little Rock was also bittersweet, and also felt slightly like abandoning an old friend. There have been so many bittersweet lasts. Last day at work, last dinner with friends, last walk in the gym, last trip to the mall (don’t laugh, I really loved my mall).
And then after all those Little Rock goodbyes, Jane and I ensconced ourselves in my childhood bedroom, with our suitcases spilling out everywhere. We’ve slept in, stayed up late, gone on a cave tour, watched the Ozark moon rise, and eaten a truck load of ice cream. My sister and brother-in-law are staying here as well (in for the summer from China), so my parent’s house is bursting at the seams a bit. We’ve thoroughly worn them out (and eaten them out of house and home).
But I think they like it.
I can’t remember the last time my sister and I jostled for position in the bathroom while fixing our hair and accidentally hair spraying each other in the face. I smile every time I take a shower and my shampoo bottle avalanches her toiletries into the bottom of the tub because we’ve tried to cram a super human amount of beauty supply products onto the tiny little tub ledge, just like high school. We’ve gone for long walks at dusk and talked for hours. It’s good. Really good.
But through all this wonderfulness (and it has been wonderful), I’ve been missing my husband so much it makes my chest ache. And I’m ready. I’m ready to be up there, with him, finally.
It’s been a bizarre, beautiful limbo-land couple of weeks. I’ve looked out at the dark green Ozark mountains, breathed in the heavy humid summer air and thought, “This time next week we’ll be with Fayez in New York.” It’s hard to wrap my mind around it as I start re-packing my bags and readying us for our flights. Our time here in this wonderful place, in this wonderful state, has wound down. I’ll always love it here, and my people, no matter where I live, or how long I’m gone.
So thank you, Arkansas, for this last hurrah.
It’s been bittersweet. I’ll love you always.
And I promise to never, ever, stop saying ya’ll.