I’m feeling rather nostalgic right now for the days of yore… you know, lemon heads, decorating your locker, Friday night football games. And maybe even before that, back to the days of freeze tag and Transformers and multicolored barretts in my hair.
I know, I know, I’m far too long into this adulthood thing to turn back but DAMN what a nigga wouldn’t give for nap time right about now.
Remember when things were simple? When the only bills you had to pay were your tickets to prom and concessions at the movies? When you agonized for HOURS about what to wear on those 2 days a week that you knew you had class with that boy and you had to be absolutely flawless? Remember that one cool ass teacher that every class lead to a random conversation that seemed at the time like it wasn’t teaching you anything but now, years later, you recall it’s content and smile because it was so correct.
Me and Joy had a convo a few months back talking about how much money we used to have in high school. Ahh the good ol days. We’d kill the mall every weekend, coming home with bags of new gear to rock the following week. I was too sick with it. I didn’t repeat the same outfit in a month, even wrote it down to keep it all correct, everything matched perfectly down to my bra and panties and you KNOW my hair was always fresh because even back then I REFUSED to let anybody catch me slipping.
It’s hard to believe there was a time when those were my priorities.
And remember your love life? Remember crushes? Notes passed in the hallway, sitting in the stands watching him run around the track, letterman’s jackets and sneaky late night phone conversations when you were supposed to be asleep. Remember how fun, how light hearted it was, though at the time it felt so SERIOUS. I remember I used to want to talk to First Love so bad that the weekends I was with staying with my daddy, we’d have a code so I’d know he wanted to talk to me. He’d call the house, let it ring once and hang up. Or he’d send a page to my little red pager (of course it was red) and leave a code telling me where to call him back or just that he was thinking of me, or loved me.
I remember having the biggest crush on this one dude for years. We used to kick it whenever I’d go over to my girl’s house because his cousin lived in the same apartments and he lived down the street. We hit it off instantly, spent so many nights talking and giggling and flirting. We’d sit outside on the stoop in the summer, watching all the shit we probably wasn’t supposed to be seeing pop off in the hood, talk about any and everything until the sun came up on our conversation. I remember one night we literally fell asleep on the back porch at his cousin’s place, woke up, brushed our teeth, showered, cooked breakfast and went right back out there to pick up where we left off, talking shit, eating candy, sneaking kisses that would invariably dissolve me into giggles.
So when did it get so damn complicated?
I know, I know, I’m too far along into this adulthood thing to turn back, and in my more objective moments, I probably wouldn’t.
But sometimes I miss it. Sometimes I’d give anything to be that little girl, playing basketball in the street with the boys, testing my naive hand at flirting, pondering the perfect outfit to wear for tomorrow and planning the perfect accidental bumping into him even though I knew his class schedule like my birthday. I miss writing my phone number on boys’ palms with red lipliner (my signature move) taking my time with the ‘L’ and positioning it just so to create tingles up his arm. I miss sitting in Joy’s room and listening to Fiona Apple and reading magazines, blissfully unaware of the world outside our door as much as a terribly astute 12 year old can be.
I miss diaries and jump ropes and racing to the candy lady on the corner to get hot fries and pickles. I miss when I could crush without breaking and and smile without waiting for the catch. I miss curling my tiny self up and sleeping in the middle of 20 teddy bears. I miss Saturday morning cartoons and feeling like a big girl because I could climb the counters and get my own cereal. I miss simplicity.
And I think that maybe I can get it back. Maybe not in it’s childish form, but certainly there has to be some simplicity that can exist in life, in love, in work, if you strive for the balance. That is the hope of the 7 year old sitting in the corner in my head, tugging on her hairbows, and trusting me to see us through.