Change. Change is good. As you can see, A Heart Wide Open has undergone some change. I am really feeling this one–right now at least. I feel a sense of peace whenever I open my page.
I want to tell you a story of a girl who, last year, kept telling herself that staying in and watching piles on piles of Netflix and reading all night was living. Do not get me wrong, I see absolutely nothing wrong with doing such things, and I really do need to have a night or two
or twelve of that very soon. But this girl thought that she was not missing out when her friends were going out to parties and staying out late getting Taco Bell at 2 am.
This girl loved that life, but this year, she wanted to make a change.
It all started with recruitment, when she spent every minute of her time with her lovely sisters. They had been friends last year, but she was closer with her roommates. They just seemed more low key. But spending all that time with her sisters made her realize how much fun they were. She thought she knew, but it was so much more.
They totally accepted her weird quirks because their quirks were just as strange. She had not laughed like that in a long time.
The next step was a night out. Of course, she just wanted to go home because a 7 am meeting was calling her name, but they wanted her to hang out, if only for a little bit. And so she did just that.
Fast forward a few weeks, and she does her first three for three weekend. Going out, dancing to fun, electronic music, and trying not to be blinded by the flashing strobe lights. Talking to boys like it was so easy. Showing more skin than usual and actually feeling good about it. She was becoming more confident without even realizing it.
And soon, she was dying for the weekend to come–not just to go to parties and talk to cute boys, but to hang out with her friends. She felt accepted for who she was: a girl who chugged a cup of coffee to boost her energy and proceeded to be a social butterfly and danced on tables. She had never felt more free.
One afternoon on the freeway to the beach with two of her close friends, something happened to make her heart stop. A car tried to merge into her lane while she was right next to this car. She was in the passenger seat, right next to the other car.
It was inches away. Seventy miles per hour. Not even looking. Swerving. Almost hitting the center divider to avoid a collision. Breathing hard. Lightheaded. Nausea.
She already knew how life is fleeting, how easy it can be for it all to be over. And it almost could have been in the blink of an eye. Whenever she thinks about it, it becomes difficult to breathe, and when she closes her eyes, she sees the car again.
She has been in quite a few near misses. Narrow escapes. After a lifetime of wanting her end her life because she did not see the worth in herself, seeing it almost end reminded her of why she chose to stick out life. She looked back on every minute she spent wallowing in a lack of self-worth and realized just how precious her life really is. She wants to live. She wants to spend her days laughing and smiling (and spending lots of time in the library so she can study abroad!) and spend her nights taking over the aux cord to play country music and dancing on tables to Sam Hunt.
A year ago she would have never thought this would be her life. A year ago, she imagined she would continue spending her weekends with her laptop and body pillow.
And it feels so good.
PS If you did not catch on, that girl is yours truly. Yup, I danced on a table!!
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