A story for the Taboo Words contest
I must have been here a thousand times, but each time is as wondrous as the first. It’s quiet, peaceful, – just what I need right now. This is a very important decision I have to make. There are so few times, it seems, that I can just relax, far from the demands and pressures of everyday life. Here I’m surrounded by beauty, shut away from the ugliness of the world. There’s not another person for at least a hundred miles. It’s a wonderful place where I can think clearly and be at peace.
Not that my life is bad, of course. I have a good family, lots of friends and I’m doing some important work. It’s just overwhelming, sometimes, and I have to get away for a while. Sometimes it seems selfish to want to get away. I mean, there are people who need me, who depend on me. But it’s not that I forget about them when I’m here. In fact, in a way, I bring them with me. We’re always close, even when I’m far away. I’m certainly not running away from anything or anyone.
For this brief time, though, I need to be by myself in a place of calm, where I can focus on my priorities. A place where I can think about what I’ve done well and things that didn’t turn out as I had hoped. This is a time that I can look at my sometimes chaotic life with a fresh perspective. I’ve made some decisions that worked out pretty well for those I love as well as myself, but some other things… well, I can’t change the past, but I can at least determine to make better decisions in the future. I can see some things much more clearly when I’m here.
As I walk slowly around this place, hearing the subtle sound of each footstep, surrounded by reminders of the tragic loss of my original family, my mind cries out even as my ears are filled with silence. I see images of happy, smiling faces, though I was far too young at the time to remember them now. I can only hope that the life I now live honors their memory.
But I also see images of the joys of life with my new family. I never really knew my birth parents, but I know the people that love me now. We’ve been through some rough times, but year after year I find that they’re not just friends, they are my true family. That’s why this decision is so important. It affects my friends – my family.
As the peacefulness of this place seeps into my very being, I find that the decision I must make is not as difficult as I had thought. Surrounded as I am by these memories, I see that my only choice is that which benefits my family and friends and not myself.
As much as I love it here, the longer I stay, the more I miss my friends, my family and my work. It’s time to leave the calm and the quiet and get back to them. I’ve made an important decision – it’s still not the right time to let everyone know who I really am – only my closest friends know me that well. This place, this fortress is great, but what’s even better is the love and companionship of my friends. I have so many friends, but I’m really ready to get back to Jimmy and Perry and Lois – especially Lois! Now that’s a super idea.