–noun, plural -ties.
sure, the technical definition explains what the word means, but this past weekend, i learned what it felt like.
it was in the way my friends listened long enough for me to run out of silly stories and get down to what was really on my mind. it was in the way my parents drove 10+ total hours for me with a couch blocking the rear view window. it was in the way they continued to look forward, reminding me of the good parts to come. it was in the way the hand-me-downs from my siblings filled up my new apartment. it was in the way my parents opened their wallets. it was in the way my parents, despite their achy knees and backs, lifted and scrubbed and swept and knelt and stood and cleaned and cleaned and cleaned. it was in the way they said “we’re so lucky to see you two weekends in a row” even though this weekend was all about work. it was in the way they pointed out the positive features and ignored the drippy sinks and loose screws. it was in the way the hours slid by, past their desired departure time, but they stayed until i was steady on my feet. it was in the way the smiles were stuck on their faces. it was in the way they squeezed me goodbye – so tight – despite having muscles exhausted from hours of physical labor.
sometimes, to really understand something, you can’t read about it. you must live it.
here’s to living. on my own. (ready or not.)