She looked down at her freckled shoulders realizing she allowed herself to get sunburned at the playground this morning. She rocked lazily in the swing, her book on her lap, her eyes semi-focused on the two little girls spraying the Jeep and each other with the garden hose. She relaxed further into herself, remembering other summers and another self.
She remembered a girl splashing unabashedly in the fountain in Trafalgar Square. She remembered a girl accepting an invitation for drinks from an Australian she met in France. She remembered winning favor with Italians, simply with her smile and her charm. She remembered a girl who spoke fluent Spanish, chatting with children on the streets of Mexico.
She remembered a girl who was going to change the world by reaching its youth, who endeavored to be best teacher she could be. She remembered a girl who wanted to live abroad and travel every summer, who planned to live life to its fullest, to experience everything the world had to offer.
She sighed reflectively. The child within her rolled over, causing her to wince with his force. She protectively stroked her burgeoning belly as she smiled at the antics and shrieks of merriment from the two girls on the lawn. The sun shone on them so their hair glowed like halos, like gifts from heaven planted in this mundane ordinary place, their laughter breaking apart as it rose to the sky, popping like bubbles blown by the celestial.
She was not traveling the world. She was not meeting new and exotic friends. She was not the girl she was then. She was living this moment. This was her serenity. Her peace.
This was her piece of earth she had been given to care for, to nurture, to grow. She was learning to be content in the small moments of water hose created rainbows and toddlers squirting cats and cats coming back for more.
Much like her. Despite crummy days, days where she feels much like something said cat dragged in, days where the cross words seem to outnumber the nuzzles, she still keeps coming back for more.
This was the life she chose. This was the life she loved. This is the girl she is.