3 weeks ago, I decided to book flights to Amsterdam.
For those who know me, traveling is an essential part of who I am. It has a lot to with my relationship with Gozo (and I guess America too).
All I had to do was click “confirm to pay” on RyanAir’s website. My finger hovered over my MacBook’s touchpad for a good 10 minutes before I said “fuck it” and booked the flights.
Now, I’ve booked a few flights in my life so far and yet I was never as scared as booking those flights.
My mind was racing. I kept telling myself: “Should I? What about the pandemic?”
I know I don’t have any reason to be anxious, yet I was, and up until this week, I still was.
Going to Amsterdam is a big step towards “getting back to normal” – to feeling like myself again. Someone stronger, someone courageous, someone who faced the world with a strong face. Someone who won’t let the world crush them down. And in these past 2 and a half years, I do feel like the world has crushed me down. I guess that’s the sad part about adulting – defeat.
Now, it’s 6AM and I’m at the Malta International Airport. And I’m finally going to get back on a plane again – something I’ve been waiting to do for 2 and a half years. And I suddenly feel like telling the world: “Fuck you! Here I am, you didn’t crush me and I’m still carrying my shit with me.”
Walking through the sliding doors of the airport with my hand luggage felt like normal. It felt like “Gosh, this is where I’m meant to be. It’s been so long.”
I’m finally back. I’m finally feeling like me again.
I’ve Been Very Patient.
I don’t want to write about the pandemic. I don’t want to write about the shitty week I’ve had or the argument with my parents or even the anxiety that clouded my mind for so so long.
The point of this trip is for me to feel like my old self again – someone less anxious – someone from pre-pandemic – and as I drink my orange juice at the restaurant next to Gate 1, I feel so normal. I feel calm. And my current life is anything but calm.
I had forgotten what it meant to travel. I had forgotten the things that come second nature while at an airport like checking in and security. You don’t really think about these things when you’re at an airport.
But being back here, it all came back to me. It was always in me. And it feels like home.
How is it that in the past 4 years, I’ve moved from apartment to apartment, to Gozo, Malta, America, and back, and yet the only place that gives me comfort is an airport?
It feels right to be here.
I belong here.
No judgement. Just me and a bunch of random people who don’t know me. We’re all going our separate ways.
I’ve got to head to my gate now. The sun is rising.
I can’t wait to find my seat, feel my stomach drop when the plane detaches from the ground – I can’t wait to get away from Malta, just for a little bit.
I can’t wait to be out there in the world, again, finally.
My patience was worth
I can breath again.