Five a.m. Sunday morning. As I struggle to get out of bed, I groan and stretch. I question why I am up this early and why I would do this to myself. I put on my summer uniform, an oversized T-shirt and shorts, and put my hair in the messiest bun I can possibly make. I go downstairs and greet my dad and my dog. I can barely keep my eyes open. I grab my usual bagel with cream cheese, a glass of cold water, and an apple. After I finish, I go back upstairs. Back in my room I can feel my body gravitating toward my bed, but I fight the urge and keep going on with my morning. I hobble to the bathroom and wash my face and teeth. Then I go back downstairs, put on my black, dirty Birkenstocks, and head down to the lake.
And then I see it. And I freeze. I stare at the most beautiful sunrise I have ever seen. There are hues of bright pink, orange, red, and yellow, all mixed together in the bright sky. It’s like a painting that belongs in an art gallery in New York City. The light is shining off the lake and reflecting beautiful colors. The lake is glass; there are no ripples, waves, or sticks. It’s like a stained glass window in a church in Europe. All I can hear is the silence of the earth and the calm of the wind. I know I have to be the first one on the water to experience this wonderful sight. I grab my life jacket and wake board and prepare to jump into the water – to break the glass.
The boat pulls out of the dock, and I feel the adrenaline. I can’t wait to start cutting the glass with my board. I jump into the water and begin to strap up – left foot first, then right. My brother throws me the rope, and I am ready to go.
The boat starts to pull, and I rise from the water. Immediately my worries disappear, and the soreness in my body dissolves. I feel like I am alive. Not like the way that someone wakes up every morning, but the feeling of flying in the air. I turn my board straight and am ready to conquer anything in my way.
I lean back and exit the wake. I glide across the water; back and forth, again and again. Jumping and spinning, pulling and pushing. My body feels like a feather falling from the sky – like a leaf blowing in the wind.
I take a moment to appreciate my surroundings. The pink, orange, red, and yellow sunrise is becoming brighter by the minute. The water still looks like the side of a skyscraper. I ask myself, is this the emotion I am seeking to encounter? I have never felt it before. It is a stranger to my body, and I’m not used to it. The feeling of being weightless. The feeling of being limitless. The feeling of being everlasting. The feeling of being boundless. The feeling of being infinite.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.