Can you remember the last time you felt free? I’m talking truly free – no mortgage, no car payment, no job, no money, absolutely no responsibilities other than just being present in your own skin. More importantly, is it possible to get that feeling back once the time has passed?
As I write this I am sitting in my family home where barely a folding chair remains. As the time is drawing near to close the door for good on our humble abode. Time has naturally marched on without my consent – really, where did the time go? As I sit in this rickety old chair I am listening to a song on my Ipod called, Free by the Zac Brown Band. It has a raw earthy vibe that can only come from country western music. It’s one of those songs that will magically transport you to your own personal place of freedom – wherever that may be.
For me, it’s here in my childhood home on Cypress Road. I spent countless hot summer days reading Nancy Drew novels and popping tar bubbles on the street with my toes, while my Grandfather shepherded us kids back and forth to the beach. We piled in the hearse like trunk of his Chevy Impala (yes, the trunk was open) with our bathing suits and beach towels. We were headed for an afternoon filled with chicken fights in the steamy lake water. Pure old fashioned fun. The familiar smell of boat oil and gasoline rose to meet us while climbing from the trunk. We couldn’t wait to jump in and see who would arrive first to the tiny fluorescent yellow raft that sat at the far end of the beach limits. We spent hours alternating between sunning ourselves and diving into the murky waters to cool off. From the safety of the raft we waved to the boats passing by and begged them to honk their fog horns. Simple pleasures!
While soaking up the sun we lay dreaming and plotting our lives and what it would be like when we were in our thirties or forties. Would we be married? Would we have children? If so, how many? What would we name them? What would we look like? Nothing to reflect on from the past just a long clear picture of the future ahead of us. Time was our friend.
We slept out under the stars, put on summer plays behind sheets and popped jiffy pop by bonfire. The echoes of kids racing past on their Schwinn’s rushing to the next great neighborhood play house, which was usually a patch of woods that we creatively turned into a house with the help of our healthy imaginations.
I had an amazingly simple childhood and even though I begged God for a more exciting existence, I had the finest freedom I have ever known – the time and space to create the best version of me.
Do yourself a favor today and find a comfortable place and take your own personal flight back to freedom – wherever it may be. Happy travels to you!