I remember the first time I smoked a cigar. I stole it from my father’s collection of “It’s a girl” and “It’s a boy” cigars he had collected over the years. It was a big, fat cheap thing and it wasn’t good. Still, puffing away on it was satisfactory. Read into what you will dear Freudian’s but the thing is… it made me feel larger. A solid, definable part of this world. There I was – a small twelve-year-old girl puffing away on a big, fat cigar.
I don’t know why I think of it now, except that I am at this moment also puffing away on a cigar. A trimmer, blueberry flavored thing, also not very good. And I’m pondering my life as it is now. A divorced mother of two, counting achievements and failures, mentally categorizing what I have and what I don’t, listening to the persistent chirp of some unidentified night animal. See I’ve come to understand I am exactly where I have put myself. And also to understand exactly where I want to be. And too, that only I can traverse the space, the layers – the what? – to get there. See, it’s less about changing the ‘where’ I am and more of changing the ‘how’ I am. Not the ‘what’, but bringing ‘how’ I am into every aspect of my daily dealings.
But let’s go back to that twelve-year-old girl and her cigar. Because what it is that makes me think of that moment now, is the wonderful mix of confusion and dreams and hope that we so often say belongs to the young. It doesn’t. It surrounds us and falls upon us whenever we close one chapter of our lives and prepare to embark on a new one.
And I’ve done it. I’m awake and I know, that chapter is closed. I’ve brought myself to this place because it is where I am supposed to be. And even though the cigar is quite bad, this is good – sitting here in the night, puffing away, and writing – I am me. And in the words of Ellie Goulding’s popular song – I know it’s going to be –