6 YEARS AGO 2014
Date: August 2014
One of my big goals was to appreciate the places I lived and have lived more. It seems we take those places for granted.
Location: Albany’s Lincoln Park/ Capital Buildings
Learning: There are beautiful places everywhere if you just start to look.
For this date, I wanted to go bike riding, something I enjoy but never take the time to do. I decided to ride as far as my legs would take me since getting the bike into my car wasn’t going to happen. I wanted to just go without a destination in mind. I wasn’t feeling up to venturing out into the world alone but what a feeling this ended up being! I figured the bike would be my protector. No one would notice me on this bike and I could go further on my solo adventure. I am discovering that I like this feeling, the feeling of adventure I suppose, or discovery rather. I don’t know exactly what it is but I like it.
I found the most perfect spot just down the block from where I live. It couldn’t be more than a mile away. You could see the whole city. It was serene and wonderful and I may have missed it had I never just ventured out.
Why haven’t I done anything like this before? It’s an odd kind of sadness reflecting on this because part of me knows it’s because I fear what people think of me when I’m alone or just in general I guess. When alone, I feel even more awkward and naked than I usually do. I don’t have the confidence to just exist alone. I guess that’s what I am doing on this journey– finding that.
Letter written after the date:
Dear Future You,
You are going to love so many people in so many ways. Each one of these loves will be beautiful in their own way and they will teach you and fulfill you. However they will not be forever. The only forever love you’re guaranteed is with you, so make sure you feed that love and continue to feed it. Feed it even when you don’t feel like you love yourself. This isn’t to say you shouldn’t continue to connect and love and LOVE but remember people break up after 50 years; they fall out of love or refall in love with something new and younger. No new younger creature could ever replace you yourself. You are it.
PRESENT DAY 2020
Dear past me,
In the words of my students, “Heard ya, Miss.”
I still understand the feeling of being awkward in certain settings when I am alone, but I think confidence is something we all continue to work on and I will continue to work on.
Remember confidence is a solo project and no one else should be creating it for you.
Funny how time changes you. Biking became something I do often and more often alone than not. I am a fairly slow rider and don’t like to be rushed or hold anyone back. I always liked the freedom of being on a bike and how much ground you can cover. Later in the dates, I went on to rent bikes all over the place. I guess looking back, this started consistency in riding.
Learning: Trying new things could lead you to the best things
(and the worst things, but at least it will be FUN!)