I have been out of the hospital 6 months now...6 months to the day tomorrow. After 4 months of rehabilitation and 2 months of specific physical therapy I should have been able to fly again roughly a month ago. I could tell my mother's patience was running thin, my doctors patience was running thin...heck even my patience was fading.
I had been told time and time again that jumping off the waterfall to save my brother was heroic and an incredible act of family love on my behalf. Truth be told, it was a natural instinct...I didn't even think about my own safety before I flew after his idiotic 5 year old self. The Fae didn't grow wings until they were at least 16, which meant that the poor thing had no way to stop his fall, which meant that it was up to whoever was nearest to save him...which just happened to be me.
The only good thing about this whole experience was that it had taught my brother to be a bit more responsible...he no longer got himself into stupid situations...well not as often anyway. It also meant that he was incredibly kind to his older sister...that sister being yours truly.
Unfortunately, only being 17 years old myself...it meant that the weight of my brother coupled with my own weight and the damaging, powerful spray of the waterfall meant that as soon as I got my brother to safety my wings collapsed in a bleeding and sprained heap. Fast forward a couple of hours and I had been admitted into the Royal Fae institute for severe wing damage.
After several surgeries to fix the broken cartilage and torn fabric I had sustained in my daring rescue mission I was ready to start 4 gruelling months of learning to use my wings again...wings I had only had for a year before I had destroyed them saving my brother from certain death. Not only had the recovery been physically, but also emotionally and mentally demanding and painful. The last day of my rehabilitation had been one of the happiest days of my somewhat limited life so far...yet this day had to be the second happiest, it just had to be. It was only a few hours until the new year and in that time I needed to be able to fly again...if not for my sakes but for my mother who had looked after me, for the doctor who had healed me...and for my brother who saw me as a role model.
I refused to be that daughter who couldn't fly despite having functional wings...or the patient who refused to live their life normally despite being able to, I also refused to come across as weak and soft in my brother's eyes. I needed to teach him to be tough and resilient...and to keep going when things got hard...to not hide in the background no matter what life throws at you.
It was because of all these people relying on me, it was because of all these people who meant a lot to me...they were the reason why I was standing on the roof of my parents house eyeing our sweeping backyard like I looked at homework...with equal parts trepidation,dislike and anticipation. It was now 1130pm, I had been standing on this roof for approxiametly two hours now. Down below me, my family and friends were busy partying into the new year with style whilst I was trying not to freeze to death while also trying to ensure that I actually fly before the new year.
If I didn't properly use my now recovered wings before the new year, I had a bad feeling I never would again which made me sick to the core...I wasn't a quitter nor a faker...I was going to get through this. Every year, exactly on midnight...all those who could fly in my neighbourhood would take a midnight flight in the light of a full moon around the bay as a way to celebrrate the new year and ensure we go into it with a clear head and a pure heart. This year I was going to participate...my fears be damned.
As I heard the rumble of thousands of Fae cheering beneath me, I looked up at the pearly white moon situated at the apex of the navy sky...it was offically midnight, the new year had begun. Disregarding the consequences and pushing my ego aside I jumped...well more like slipped off the roof...and it was glorius. The chilly night air tickled my sensitive skin like a million feathers as my hair jet black hair melded into the night sky behind me.
As the tops of the lush evergreen trees dotting my backyard approached me, I took a deep breath and snapped open my now recovered wings...something I had practiecd hundreds of times in the last few weeks. Fighting hard to ignore the anxieties of my ego , I instead focused on the view around me . My friends, family and neighbours...all who were of the correct age were beginning to take flight, to join me in the indigo sky. Above me, the full moon shone like a fully developed pearl in an ocean of brightly glimmering diamonds...the millions of stars spread out around me like a heavenly tapestry.
The subtle aching in my back as my infrequently used wing muscles complained of the sudden flight couldn't even dampen my spirits as I made eye contact with my mother next to me...the pure joy and glimpse of surprise in her eyes making the leap of faith all the more worth it. I knew that I was going to be sore tomorrow, I could just feel it. Yet starting the new year with a little muscle pain was worth knowing that I could fly again...pain was worth it to make my parents proud of me once again.
Following my mother's path, I swooped and glided through the Summer evening as we soared above Fae's majestic countryside. Everything looked regal under bright moonlight, from the dark silhouette's of the local flora to the rivers flowing like liquid stars into the nearby bay that shone so brightly I found myself squinting in the dead of the night.
After about 20 minutes, I felt my still developing wing muscles fatiguing as they spat their dummy at the sudden exercise. Call it a Mother's instinct...or perhaps it was obvious that I was struggling because both my parents soon fell back from the main pack and grabbed my arms. Simply smiling at me yet saying nothing I entered the new year with both my parents by my side, and the wings on my back...the brilliant moon above me lighting our way into a new year.