I’m watching a water droplet slide down a jug inside a cozy little deli in the heart of Katoomba. Irish music is whistling away amongst the sounds of forks on carrot cake, long work days, foreign whispers and travelling ambitions. My cheeks are pinched with every spicy sip of my hot apple cider and I can feel the socks inside my boots still drenched from canyoning. I was wondering the street and came inside to enjoy my own company, to spoil myself, to write and to be still.
I finished university eight months ago, and it’s as though my mind has outstretched arms and cupped hands, yearning for drops of learning, growth, understanding and progression.
I was touched by a friend today who said ‘I am exactly where I am supposed to be’.
I chose this path and completely resonate with that statement, yet my brain is addicted to the feeling of progression.
You are allowed to feel content.
You are allowed to watch the shadows of the swaying leaves on the rocks in fascination.
You are allowed to be silent.
You are allowed to contemplate the history of that grain of salt.
You are allowed to feel the trees against your skin and imagine the energy.
You are allowed to smile widely to anything at all.
You are allowed to fail.
You are allowed to win.
You are allowed to forget all social cues and expectations and just revel in the human experience.
You are allowed to let go of the pain of shootings and terrorism and war, of death and time and inequality and the future.
You are allowed to be an observer.
You are allowed to feel human.
You are allowed to tell the truth.
You are allowed to be present.
You are allowed to be you. Not the past one or the future one, but the one that is right here in this moment, made of all the trickling streams and winding mossy paths and decisions and memory cells and experiences and greater context.
In this moment, you don’t need to be anything more. Slow down the working parts, the planning and scheming, the glowing and preening, the awareness and the empathy.
Just live, carefree and wild. You deserve to be here, and you deserve to respect yourself.