"It wasn’t the balloon I wanted. It was the feeling of being with balloon tied to my little wrist like my companion …"
I was three years old and I know this is a memory because there were no iPhones in 1985.
We were at Disney World in Orlando, Florida, me and balloon. My parents were there too. It was a great day, I felt comfortable and happy. Until I saw it floating up there. And up and up.
I was buckled into my stroller. Couldn’t move. Balloon was tied to my wrist just a moment ago. Where was it going? It was so far up there, I started to panic. I yelled for mom, for dad.
It hurt me to see it so far away. Balloon! It was just here with me and now I could barely see it.
Mom and dad said they would get me another balloon, but I didn’t understand what that had to do with this problem.
Balloon was definitely way up there!
My deep cries shifted something inside of me, and cracked open a little well to collect my sadness. It is a space I can still visit when I need to.
It wasn’t the balloon I wanted. It was the feeling of being with balloon tied to my little wrist like my companion.
For that short while, like a childhood teddy, balloon was my companion of closeness, of care and comfort. It elevated my park experience as I rolled around by myself, so close to the ground. I had someone with me.
As adults, we may have objects around that represent balloon. Maybe too many.
We may have people tied to us, perhaps without realizing it. Whoever they may be, hold tight before they float away.
There truly won't be another one like them.