My countdown began over 3 months ago. To be precise my countdown to coming home for Christmas began as soon as I was dropped off at the airport to leave on August 31. I had my final hug from my older sister. The TSA guy waiting for me to stop hugging her and hand him my ticket and ID. As I sat in a mostly deserted terminal with two hours to kill I thought about when I would be returning home in December. I thought about it most days for the first month. Then routine settled in, school became overwhelming, and work tiring. But I still thought of that happy moment when I would be going home for the holidays. Only four more days but the anticipation is driving me nuts. If I could be on a plane tomorrow or even tonight I would jump at the chance.
I am looking forward to swimming next to my older sister as the sun rises. Groaning at the choice between a kick set or stroke set when all I want to do is a pull set or free; I don’t stroke. And stealing sips of my neighbor lanes coffee since I didn’t wake up in time to make any.
I am looking forward to rushing from swim practice to hike with my mom before the heat settles in. Even though it is winter for half the country, LA will still be hot. We will get into a theological discussion until the trail becomes to steep to talk and hike. Then waiting at the top, enjoying the view of surrounding mountains and sneaking in some yoga before we descend down the other side.
I am looking forward to going with my younger sister to find a Christmas tree since it has to be taller than her. She is 6 feet tall. But we always wait until the last-minute. One year it wasn’t until Christmas Eve that we got a tree. The closer it gets the cheaper they become.
My fingers are looking forward to playing the piano again. One that is actually in tune. One that has all the keys in tact. They are looking forward to playing all 88 keys.
I am looking forward to sitting on top of my mom. Or rather sitting next to her with my legs on top of hers. If I sat on top of her I would likely crush her. I still want to be a five-year old held in her arms and rocked to sleep.
I am looking forward to seeing my two godmothers. To hear their voices early in the morning as I am waiting for my coffee, before my brain has woken up.
I am looking forward to walking across the sand barefoot and swimming in the ocean. Maybe forgoing the wetsuit and going bareback. Enveloped by water that brings me peace and happiness. Dolphins playing in the surf nearby. Rays of sunlight glittering beneath the surface.
Only four more days.