Not Just Yet

I believe in dreams. Even though mine live in a notebook that they’d like closed, thank you very much. They might move to stand by the window, sometimes, but you better believe that shade will come down faster than you can blink. (I believe in agoraphobic dreams, it seems.)

I believe in aimless walks, even if you have to peel yourself up off the bed first. Even if it’s gray and freezing and there’s no one to tuck your gloves into your sleeves. I believe in seeking out old friends.

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I believe in a tall man playing with a young boy, lobbing him a ball and mock-tackling him to the ground. I believe in a ruffled cap of hair and a small hand, slipped inside a big one.

I believe in a little bit of sass.

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I believe in getting out of your own head. I believe in coffee shop sitting and in people watching. I also believe in getting caught, and squeaking hello, and blushing bright.

I believe in wrong turns, in trying valiantly to find your own way back, and in eventually stopping to ask for help. I believe in things that will be good, but just need a little bit more time.

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I believe in the restorative power of a long run. Also, in really rich chocolate. (You know, in a pinch.) I think you’ll find that this chocolate truffle crème brûlée will do. I believe in old bodies and new bodies. In forgiveness, too.

I believe in hair that grows back. I believe in swallowing the lump in your throat. I believe in little velvet boxes, and in the memories they hold.

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I believe in socking money away. In dusting off old photo albums. I believe in love. (Real love.) And I believe in patiently waiting for it to come around.

I believe in real food — cooked at home — 80% of the time. I believe in tracking down something sunny and bright.

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I believe in getting the hard stuff out of the way first, and in tacking on another 30 seconds. I believe in taking your troubles to the gym, and in turning restless energy into time on the clock. I believe in running until your thighs are screaming and your calves are burning and your chest is heaving. I believe in doing whatever you have to do, in order to feel better.

I believe in caramelizing onions. In letting them sweat and stick a little. In swirling them around with a wooden spoon — older than you are. I believe in warming yourself up by the stove.

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I believe in rest days. In pizza on the grill. I believe in getting it right, someday.

I believe in snail mail. And in laughter — any way you can come by it.

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I believe pep talks. And in high fives, for little things — like getting out of bed in the morning, and rooting around for a pretty pair of earrings, and spritzing on some perfume. (For no one but yourself.)

I believe in doubling the recipe, just in case. And in going outside.

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I believe in no-bake desserts. (Or, at least, now I do.)

I believe in morning light, and in growing your own plants. (And in try, try, trying again!)

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I believe in sitting on the swings, no matter how old you are. I believe in being honest, when someone asks you how you are. I believe in crying buckets, on occasion.

I believe in preserving your sense of humor. And in working on how to keep things light.

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I believe in notes to self. I believe in holding a few things secret in your heart.

I believe in traveling. And real hiking shoes. (Are they called boots? They’re definitely called boots.)

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I believe in lists (and in tearing them up sometimes, too).

I believe in food so hot that you have to keep flagging down the waiter for more water. I believe in the soothing balm of a good guacamole. I believe in the satisfying crunch of a salty tortilla chip. I believe in a splashy tablecloth and a plastic cup.

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I believe in storytelling, even if the story isn’t very good. Even if you find that you’re not managing to say exactly what you meant.

And I believe in letting go, when the time is right. But not yet. Not just yet.

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