An amalgamation of memories from the past 24 years.
  1. Being able to run around naked.
    Sure, I can do that now and erase boundaries with my roommate, but I'm talking about the kind where you were too young for people to think you're weird. I used to actively choose to not participate in a pro-clothing community until I was ready for kindergarten. No grandparents or uncles or aunts gave two shits. 'Twas the life.
  2. Being able to eat without worry.
    I'm not trying to be that girl who worries for her figure and weight, but I would be lying if I said it was of absolutely no concern. Besides that, there's also the health aspect. I can't just pick up something crazy yummy now and not get that fleeting thought that I need to watch out for my health.
  3. Attempting to learn how to ride a bike.
    I never could figure it out. That's right, I don't know how to ride a bicycle. Butttt -- one of my favorite childhood memories is busting my knee while trying to learn, and my brother taking care of me. Siblings for the win.
  4. My friend from elementary school.
    This was India in 1999 so I have no contact information on her. Once I moved away, that was it. I really wish there was a way I could track her down, but I can't even remember her last name. It makes me a little sad, but I do remember and cherish how much fun we used to have. Just two silly girls who thought they knew more than they actually did, who acted like they were older than they really were, and who thought they would stick together for life.
  5. Riding an auto-rickshaw to school.
    In India, providing school transportation isn't required. It's more the norm there to pool with other children in your neighborhood who go to the same school as you, and hire private help. Hence the autos --- I saw and learned so much because of this. The older kids in the auto would teach us magic tricks you can do with just your hands (how did that finger disappear?!), I learned my first curse word when we passed by a fighting couple, and I experienced my first crush.
  6. The auto driver.
    This requires a whole new bullet on its own. I have very vague memories of this but I just remember being close friends with the driver as the school year passed by. I remember going to his house. It's important to understand how big a deal this is, because they are often embarrassed of their small, cramped homes and not-much-to-offer lifestyles. He was comfortable showing me his home and his family though. That's proof enough that we were homies. But no way of getting these people back though.
  7. My grandfather.
    He taught me my alphabets. I am lefty by birth, but my teachers in India forced me to write with my right hand. I wouldn't be very interested in studying my letters because it was too hard to do something unnatural like that. My grandpa used to let me write all over the floors of the house (cement flooring in India), and was genius enough to teach me English letters with words from my mother language. Like A for Aeluka (mouse in Telugu, the ae sound being the same as the letter A).
  8. Rain in India.
    I know "I love the smell of rain" is a fairly normal thing to hear. But I promise you truly haven't smelled rain if you haven't experienced it in a real, tropical place.
  9. Speech and debate.
    I participated all 4 years of high school. It really shaped a lot of who I am because I went from being a confident girl to a shy and insecure one when I moved across the globe. SD really helped me get past the trauma from bullying and move away from the lost-in-translation mentality by providing me with a stage to express freely. A lot of my confidence today can be attributed to SD.
  10. Dance.
    I danced from the 5th grade till I graduated from high school and moved away for college. I went back every summer in college and trained. I did a solo 2-hour recital after graduating from college. Dance is the other mind-shaper in my life. My discipline and focus come from dance. My teacher moved back to India now. My parents moved away from Denver. I miss it so much! I can't wait to graduate so I can find time again.
  11. Reading Harry Potter for the first time.
    No matter how many times you read it after the first, you can never experience the emotions you did that first time. This applies to any book, actually. I just miss the thrill!
  12. Denver, Colorado.
    Denver is home. I directly moved there from India and didn't move out till college. Even though I chose to leave and be independent when it was time for college, I found solace in knowing that it is still home, since my family was there. They moved to Houston last year, and it is no longer "home." But in reality, I feel like I have no more home because I can never consider Houston as home, and I never go back to Denver anymore. That's a goal for 2016!
  13. College.
    Most people have these great relationships they formed in college, and all these stories to tell. Unfortunately for me, while college was an amazing experience, it still carries a lot of weight. I talk to one person out of everyone I used to hang out with. While I don't regret the decision to fall off the radar, I can't help but feel like I should have been able to take away more from it. Am I alone in this? I miss the concept of college, not so much the actual years I spent there.
  14. My best friend.
    Ok, hear me out. I live with her. And I love her to death. But I miss her. Does that make any sense? It's different when you live with someone. Our relationship shifted to a whole new dynamic. It's not necessarily a bad thing, but I do miss who we used to be. But change is life, right?
  15. Being single.
    Again, there is nothing wrong with my relationship. I am in love, I'm marrying this guy, this is all great! But I do miss it being all about me. Maybe that's a very selfish and narcissistic way to look at it, or maybe I'm freaking out about this wedding. While I do want to get married, I feel like it's some sort of countdown. Like I only have so many days left before everything is going to change. See above bullet about changing dynamics. It's scary to know that can happen to what I have now.