When I turned twenty, I celebrated my birthday with family but didn’t make a big deal of it to my friends. (Parties are stressful. You have to make them happen. I loved my 21st, but by then I’d come out of my shell a lot.)
So one of my friends decided someone needed to make a big deal of it, if I wouldn’t.
He asked when I was working, went to my house, snuck into my room (with my parents’ help), and left me a present.
Don’t get all excited. It wasn’t a mountain bike or a pet puma or anything.
He’d given me a pen. One of those fancy ones, with a real brand name, and replaceable cartridges that cost almost as much as the pen. And these pens cost a little bit! They’re not exorbitant, but you don’t get them for just messing around in your school books. You get them for your office, for sitting on your desk when big clients visit, for signing important documents.
When I picked this pen up, it felt heavy. Metal. Full of the promise of unwritten, unspoken words.
I checked the card:
For all the stories you will write,
and for the story you will write with your life.