I’ve been telling stories. My stories. I don’t usually do that.
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My memories from college are with mixed emotions. I grew up a lot in those years. Growth is painful. At that time, I often felt a sense of shame, a self embarrassment, and an illogical discomfort. Even after, I simply never talked about that time.
In college I was given this lovely circle of friends. They were souls full of life. These compassionate weirdos opened up their homes and their hearts to me, to the homeless, to everyone.
We had quail on the grill, homemade bread, pot lucks, games of chess, and drum circles. We hiked, did cartwheels on the soccer field, stayed on the swing set till 1 am, and played guitar on the science building steps. We tutored underprivileged children, splashed in the campus fountains, and climbed on the library roof. We went skinny dipping, delivered groceries to those in need, and ate a ton of pizza.
We studied. We played. We laughed. And we served our fellow neighbor. Why? Because those were faucets through which love for humanity was poured.
It was in those years, with those people, that I learned unconditional friendship. They taught me to see the soul and not the body. I saw how to “take the good and leave the bad” and accept someone despite their past. They gave me freedom to befriend others by being friendly. They taught me to love.
They helped me grow. And growth, though painful, is not something to be embarrassed about.
Yesterday I told stories. I talked about the good times. The joy and festivities flooded my mind. Fear was gone. Regret was gone. For the first time in years, I thought about those times and was filled with laughter.