There are those moments in your life you never forget. Your first kiss. Riding your bike without your training wheels. The first night alone after losing a loved one.
This was one of the moments. I took a step onto the dock knowing it was a step toward the future and away from the past. I was ashamed that a tear escaped and choked back the emotion. I could hear the ocean behind me and the uncomfortable silence in front of me. I stared at the three strangers waiting just steps away. They had taken a long journey to wait for me here. Of course, I had taken an even longer journey to get here and this moment.
I never knew I would feel more friendship, more kindness, more familiarity with a group of course sailors than my own family. But of course now, they had become my family. I nervously took another step forward feeling the harsh sun burning my cheeks. The ocean's wind whipped my cropped hair against my face, slapping it without any remorse. I had been looking forward to this moment for the last 6 months, and now I was here and I wanted more than anything to turn around back to the ship and my family.
But my real family had their tears in their eyes too. I'm not sure from joy of seeing me or guilt of not recognizing their abandoned daughter. My father stepped forward, grasping my trunk and breaking the frozen moment. I quickly gave a sad wave to my old family and followed my flesh and blood towards the future leaving the ocean, the ship, the adventure and my family behind me...as if it were a dream...a sad, hard, but all too glorious dream.