my first year of college was. really. fun.

and i'm not talking about the classes.

i had this lovely and gorgeous group of girl friends and the fourth-year-boys seemed to take us under their wing (as fourth-year-boys tend to do with first-year-girls).

i remember getting dressed up in ridiculous outfits. parties where far too many people were crammed into far too small spaces. and many, many late nights.

nights where five am found us hailing gypsy cabs. where we were greeting the sun before crawling into bed. where breakfast at 7 am in the nearest diner became the last meal before sleep.

and then. life. happened.

and i spent one too many nights in a strange diner. and one too many nights playing video games until 4 am. and one too many nights on someone else's couch.

and so i began to protect my nights and mornings. hold them close to me. guard them with something akin to a vice grip.

and so it went. for quite some time.

i'd leave parties early. pay extra for solo cabs. choose not to go at all . but always, always, cross the threshold to my own bedroom (alone) and breathe in the sweet air of solitude.

so when i came here i was determined that i might find my own space. nothing was of greater import.

and then i arrived. and the room was small. and so damn white. and i started to cry on that first day. hard.

but with a floral bedspread. and a silver lamp from wal-mart the tightness in my chest began to loosen. and the room became home (or some version of it). and i survived my two months there. and i really do mean, survived. nothing more glamorous than just surviving. and then my contract ran out. and i found myself homeless (or some version of it) in provo.

and then miracle of miracles, new friends took me in (like the stray that i am).

and my privacy was shot to hell.

i find that i'm now living in something akin to an actor's commune. we all cook food together. and video games are played until 4 am or 5 (yes, i'm back there). and i fall asleep on the living room floor. and there is no time to myself before bed, or upon waking, and the thing is, not only am i okay with that, i find it... delicious.

so delicious and sweet i can't tear myself from the living room floor to climb into my apportioned bed. night after night it goes like this.

and i feel like a first-year all over again. but better: wiser and fuller. and life is cyclical. forward-moving, but cyclical.

and this sleeping on the living room floor, this giving over of time and space feels like some kind of growth.

so there you have it. here's to you, utah. my deep thanks for the carpet on which i get to sleep, and the cool summer air i feel slipping through the screened windows.