My Haven

October 7, 2008
By Mylena Gilkes, Queens Village, Queens, NY

As I tumble into the doorway, shoulders slumped and eyes half lidded, I try not to dwell on the hell I have just faced. Shrugging off exhaustion from a long day in school, I start off to my sanctuary. My thoughts are both everywhere, and nowhere at all. Questions, anxieties, and wonders, all play in my head, disorienting me. However, as I walk to the one place I can be me, I begin to shed all inhibitions. Each step I take brings me closer to my haven. It is a place where worry disappears, and the sun shines without limitation.

Walking, I feel an untouchable joy. Pulling out an old, rickety ladder, I climb through the small hole in the ceiling above my bedroom, anxious to see what inspiration my haven brings. My miniature journey, though it seems like an eternity, leads me to my attic. Though a rather large room, it is weary with years. Dust has collect over the things stored inside it, and age eats away at the memories. There is a light, but it is over powered by the sheets of sunlight pouring in through cracks in the roof. That is how I prefer it, natural will always overshadow artificial.

Inhaling, I draw in a familiar scent. It is one of aging memories, and pinewood. Comforted by the familiarity, I settle into my usual seat, an old beanie bag, stored up here because it had no place in the design of the house. It purpose was no longer being served. Cast away, it is almost symbolic of me.

I look around, eyes taking in this setting. At one point in time, it could have been just about anything. An extra bedroom, a library or even a whole other apartment. Its potential, unfortunately, went unnoticed. I wonder if the person who built it, destined it to be storage room. Nothing but a mere container of all things unwanted. Maybe that’s why I am so drawn to it.

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