You can't go home again.
We've all heard this saying. I have no idea how typically true it is, but for me, it's kind of true.
My memories of Cleveland are a mixture of my childhood days, right up until I left, thinking I'd never return in 2007. Those snapshots in time, the friendships I had, my remaining family.. It all changes and creates the distance that I think is referenced in the title of this post.
I've spent the last week visiting family back in Cleveland and I found that I'd forgotten my way around to a degree. As I drove past places, I'd remember something that stood out, a beautiful church that hadn't seemed to have changed since I was a little kid, the food in a past-favorite restaurant, and the smells that filled the place from the kitchen, the hospital my Mom was rushed to while I was off in Niagara Falls.
I left Cleveland yesterday with a sense of melancholy, my remaining family is all older, as am I. I suppose I must look the same way they looked to me, and a quiet acceptance in knowing we had passed the midway point of our lives. I hope all of them are as dedicated to wanting to accomplish what they haven't yet, but have always wanted to, as I am.
I love those people more than words can accurately describe, but this time, like all the others, I'm left with a pain in my chest after visiting. The pain won't quickly fade, nor do I want it to. I need it as a reminder that I will not go quietly into the night.
I hope and pray that they feel the same.