Yesterday, I drove home.
I could tell you that when I said goodbye to Jen and started the van for the final leg of the journey, the check engine light decided to make an appearance. How quaint. I could also tell you about returning to east coast pace at a rest stop where the pervading sentiment was Move or Be Moved. I could tell you how the songs that had accompanied me for the past 10,000 miles sung me home, and how I sang out at the top of my lungs along with them. I could tell you that tears of joy came to my eyes when I saw Crossgates Mall in Albany and realized I was really almost home, and usually tears only come to my eyes at Crossgates when my mom drags me out on Black Friday before the sun rises every year. I could tell you about how that same mom squeezed the life out of me when she hugged me in the driveway, and how a similarly life-endangering hug was given by my dad, and how I hugged them in a likewise manner repeatedly for the rest of the night because I’ve missed them so, so much. I could tell you about the green and gold balloons that were waiting in the living room, alongside a WELCOME HOME! banner. I could tell you about the many baked goods also awaiting my arrival, all my mom’s doing. I could tell you about the additional baked goods delivered by Jaclyn, who slaved away on multiple-layered chocoholic cupcakes and brought them directly to my door as a welcome home present, and how seeing and laughing with an old friend was more of a present than anything. I could tell you about a night spent swapping stories and sharing pictures and watching football and eating and eating and eating. I could tell you of the glory of sleeping in my own bed, of not waking up in the van this morning, of not driving hundreds of miles upon daybreak.
I could tell you about all of these things and plenty more, but the only thing that really matters is that glory, glory, hallelujah: I’m home. And there’s nothing more special or important to me than that right now.