Amazing Kids! Magazine

Humidity and Butterfly Wings

By Gabi Capocelli, age 15, Colorado

When I was little, my brother and I used to spend our days rocking back and forth on the porch swing at my grandmother’s house. Its emerald green structure and plaid pillows acted as our private jet. I would touch my feet to the ground, just to get a head start, and then set us free. And we would drift in the air, effortless and unbound. Both of us would squeeze our eyes shut, letting the wings of the swing carry us to new places. Disney World, our home town, and carnivals, anything we could dream up. I look back and see that all of those days were simple, I could create my own dreams, and then go there. Each time my brother and I sat on that swing, I can remember a part of me letting go, releasing itself into the surrounding world, for everyone to see. There was something wonderful about being able to sit and let the air brush the backside of your ears. It made everything ok. It made everything transparent. But, the greatest of all things was that I lived every moment on that swing with gusto and spunk because I didn’t care. I didn’t care what we were going to have for lunch that day, or where we would go tomorrow, or where I would be in five years. I didn’t worry about when I would let my soul live, it just happened. The only things I cared about were on that swing. And right then, I felt liberated.

Everything is different now that we’ve grown. It seems we’ve lost the joy that once existed on that swing as kids. Sometimes I go back in time and don’t understand how it all can slip past you so quickly. Just nine years ago, I was seven, my brother was five, and though we were unaware of it, we were absolutely free. Free from adult thoughts of the future, and what to make of it. Free from the binding aspects of life. Free from worry and obligation, and most importantly, free from becoming older and letting that moment on the swing slip away into the back of our memories. Before long, I realized I had forgotten what it felt like to stretch my arms out on a warm day and let my skin drink up the sun. I had forgotten what it felt like to run up and down a field for hours, hoping the clouds wouldn’t catch us. I had long ago forgotten how it felt when my hair pranced along my neck in midair, while planted on the green plaid airplane.

Each of us looks back on the life we have lived, hoping that it was enough, hoping that what we have done, what we have said, and what we have felt somehow changed one person. Whether that person be a friend, a family member, or a stranger. I want to know that I have done something to make this world remember me. I want to know that I have unleashed my soul and let it free, totally and incredibly fearless. I think that we get caught up in the realness of life, never concentrating on the wonderful things we have around us. We always look ahead, never pausing in the moment to take a breath and enjoy what we have made for ourselves and what has been made for us.

Life is a series of short moments, snippets of memory that dog-pile on each other to make one lump. Some of those memories may be connected; some may have absolutely no relevance. But, the truth is, the only way to know that you have made an impact on this world is by becoming the person you have always wanted to be and by living each moment you have to the fullest. So that when you look back on your life, you see each snippet of your life, each tiny moment, like a sticky day on the swing, and you know you were free. Enjoy what you have and love what you are given. Too often do people leave this Earth with their music still in them. Each of them hoping to unfasten those bolts and screws securing them to the conservative, unenterprising world. They never give themselves a chance to be reckless and wild. Don’t leave yourself waiting for the right time to unleash your tune, until it is too late. Let momentum catch up with you, and fling yourself into the air, letting the air cushion you like a rickety old swing. Travel to anywhere and everywhere and set your soul free.