I dreamt last night of a day long ago. It was near the end of my senior year of high school. I had just turned 18. My cousin, our friend, and I drove to the beach. Windows down, hair blowing carelessly, sun setting. We brought with us a few quilts and pillows, wine, snacks. For the next few hours we sat on the quilts and gabbed, sipped wine, pelican watched, set our gaze on the horizon. Now completely dark and alone on our stretch of shore, we made a bed. Two quilts on the sand, three pillows side by side, one quilt to cover us. I remember how huge the world felt that night. I remember the stars in the coal sky. I remember something being said now and then and we'd just laugh and laugh. And there was nothing in the world that mattered, just laughter and the soft roll of waves licking the shore lullabying us to sleep.
I am still that girl who slept under the stars all those years ago, holding those I love dear and near. Today is my 37th birthday.