We always talk about feeling butterflies in our stomachs around certain people.

I think butterflies are overrated. They are graceful, yes, but they are fleeting.

I sometimes like to think of comfort as represented by fireflies in the caverns of my chest. When comfortable, they give off a dim light. This creates a dull warmth, like snuggling into a blanket. When comfort develops into happiness, they shine with more vigor. When happiness grows into joy, some forgotten fireflies join the fray. We glow.

At Princeton, I glow. I am all smiles. I rejoice in inside jokes. I give more hugs than I’ve given in the past year. I touch and am touched. I laugh boldly and uninhibitedly. I feel completely at home. I think that every last firefly is lit. I am at whatever we call peace when it is on fire.

…And then, on the last night, I see him. It had been three days with no sign of him, so I didn’t think he was there. JB was mid-sentence when I held a finger up to her with a huge grin on my face. He smiled at me smiling at him, and I ran to him. We hugged, and as his arms were around me, I felt even more fireflies blinking awake, giving new meaning to the term ‘rise and shine.’ He told me I looked lovely, and I recognized that my joy had transformed itself into ecstasy.

In sitting on those feelings for years, I lost whatever chance I might have had with him. Not many interests push me past joy. But someone here sets my fireflies alight. I must find the courage to leap at the opportunity for ecstasy when it presents itself.


About alaiyo0685

I'm a kind of quirky, pretty stubborn, way too opinionated, twenty-something, intellectual, introspective, queer, Black, female, in a polyamorous relationship, and this is where I try to figure out my life.

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