i found it like this, squeezed perfectly between the railing at today’s homecoming game. gorgeous day, impeccable people, and a win for my Redhawks.
I was laying out on a blanket at a get-together earlier today and my friend’s boyfriend tapped me on the shoulder and directed my attention to a tree down the road. the tree had to be hundreds of years old and it towered above all the houses on the street. with it being early in september, campus is still rather green with everyone itching for fall to hit hard. but there in the mass of leaves at the top of this tree was a tiny tiny patch that had already turned to a vibrant shade of orange and red. this speck, only a few feet wide had caught aaron’s attention. these leaves were absolutely beautiful so i could see why he had happened to notice them. but then he said to me, “we need to enjoy this…. this right here; i’m sitting here watching smiles light up my friends’ faces, im fortunate enough to be young and selfish and healthy. and my god, im able to enjoy that patch of leaves that did nothing more than decide to die but how amazing are they? i just feel the need to help everyone else see and appreciate this moment. what did we do to deserve all of this?” he slipped an arm around his girlfriend and gave her the most admiring stare.
in that moment, i knew aaron was right. our little lives that we go about within our little campus, our little angry orchards in our hands. ingrid michaelson trickling out of the speakers behind me as i watch alumni drive by in their cars.
this is all priceless. and someday, if it weren’t for aaron, i would have looked back on today and wished that i had soaked up Homecoming Weekend more my junior year, wished i had soaked up the little things. but because of him, i took a deep breath, looked around me and attempted to absorb every element and embedded them deep in the back of my brain.
aaron singlehandedly magnified a simple moment for me and made me see that it was worth never ever letting go of. and i really ought to thank him for that.