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“There’s a story at the bottom of this bottle.”
I awaited your arrival for what seemed like forever. Finally, after three weeks, I got to hold you, keep you. I carried you the whole way. I let you sit next to me in the car, and you held me as I slept.
You were next to me the whole hour and a half we waited in line. Eventually, we made it to the big double doors, holding the band written on your shirt. You were mine. But, at this point, I had to give you to the man standing in front of me who then replaced you with a big black “X” on the back of my hand. It wasn’t long I didn’t get to hold you, for he gave you right back. It still felt I lost a part of my heart, handing you over like that.
I know you are just a ticket. But to me, on that night, you were my gateway to one of the best things that’s ever happened to me.
“Make every second last.”
You should’ve seen it. The lights sent blue and purple streaming throughout the dance floor, their throbbing hues coloring the crowd.
You should’ve felt it. The adrenaline, making its way through my body, sending me into the middle of the mosh pit. There, I joined the people jumping up and moving to the music… Oh, the music… a sweet symphony of rock and pop that rang through my body.
“I see your name in lights.”
And you would’ve seen it, if you weren’t lying in a bed of lint and extra change, neatly tucked into the front pocket of my favorite jeans.
I still have you, still hold you… My ticket, my life, my world, my love. You were there, and you are here. Unlike him, you always will be.
“Make it count.”
Your shirt is fading on the spot where my fingers sit when you’re in them, slowly fading more, and more with each and every touch.
But you’re still here to listen, and you always know what to say, even when keeping your mouth shut.
“You know it’s what you’re good at.”
That night, that cold 25th of the month, I waited and waited, through the whole concert to hear those words. The words of my favorite song.
During the show, I was getting so irritated with not hearing it, I forgot to take in the rest of what was happening.
I forgot about my dad, watching carefully from above, making sure the boy kept his hands to himself and off of his precious daughter. I forgot about everyone around me, and I focused on the stage. And, but only for a moment, did I pretend that the lead singer would invite me, me of everyone here, up onto the stage to introduce the song and sing with him.
I forgot about you. You, patiently waiting in my pocket. You, my love. You, my ticket. You.
I forgot about Alex, who was standing next to me swaying to the music. I forgot everything.
I forgot about all those nights I’d spent, wishing this day would come. I forgot it all. And, with my eyes glued to center stage, I felt one single, little tear escape. I felt it tumble down my cheek, leaving a shining trail to my chin.
I held you in my hand the whole way home, too. I stared at you, completely oblivious to my dad and Alex in the front seat. Not caring about seeing the lights of Minneapolis, even though I had wanted to.
Sometimes, and only when it’s the worst, do I put on my iPod and play the same set list I’d heard on that November night. And I cry.
“It isn’t that hard.”
I replay the last song over, and over, and over. Hoping that maybe the memories of that night would come rushing back into my mind. But they don’t.
All I have is you to hold onto. You to hold. You to be there.
You’re all I have left of that night, besides the blue t-shirt.
Over, and over, and over again…
And I cry.
I cry for you, for me, and for him.
Count me in.”
San Francisco, California
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