Paper lanterns…

Deflated.

That was the only way to describe it. Overtime all the air had been let out, leaving me feeling flat.

My birthday triggered it. After a difficult year I felt weighed down by it all. Birthdays mark a passing of a year and this was one that was now finally over. But it was all still there.

It was hard to describe. Hard to explain how I felt inside. So thats where I kept it. All bottled up.

When my friends suggested a little weekend jaunt to the country it seemed like a perfect way to escape.

We drove down the winding roads of Sussex until we reached our friend’s house. It was lovely to see all my oldest friends.

We ate and chatted away, until we were called to the garden. My friend had a stack of paper lanterns.

She wrote my name on one and handed me the pen. She told me we had to write our hopes and dreams on the lanterns.

Eventually after some thought I wrote my greatest hope for my 26th year.

“Be Happy.”

That was it. I wanted to be happy this year. To enjoy it. To laugh and to live – instead of just exist. Birthdays don’t just mark a year passing, they are also about marking the year to come.

I think the paper lantern meant a great deal more to me than it should have. For after the lantern was lit and the air began fill it, my heart began to swell too.

I walked out into a big space and with the help of my friends let it go.

I let it all go.

And we watched my lantern fly up into the clear night sky with all the others. Watching it float away taking with it all that weight that has been holding me down far away.

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