If life is a journey, what piece of mine do you represent? You who come into my life and fill it with passion and challenge. You who see me. You with ideas that I struggle to comprehend. Ideas that keep me awake at night. Ideas that I pour over with loved ones. You force me to ask questions of that which I was certain.

Are you a stop on my journey? Maybe I’m getting off for a short break to chat and be in your company. Do we enjoy this time and at the end convince each other to not be sad that it’s over, but be glad it happened?

Or are you a day passenger? On your way to your work, and by happenstance you fall into the seat by me? You’re there to prompt me as I ponder some of life’s most beautiful and surprising questions. But, “dear friend” you say, “the next stop is just ahead, and my time has come.” And unsettlingly, you’re gone.

Maybe you’re the conductor? You’re always on the train and ready to travel, but it’s up to me to decide where I’m going and how I want to get there. “Good to see you back, friend. Where to today?”

I think I see in you a traveling companion. You’re not on my trip, but you’re headed in the same direction. We’re on this train right now, and in each other, we see similar struggles, and similar triumphs. Tomorrow we part ways. “I’ll see you again, on the other side, friend, and we’ll share a conversation. We’ll ruminate over how far we’ve come, and how much we’ve grown. We’ll embrace and without words speak how much the other is missed. In our actions and our eyes, we’ll see the bridges we’ve built and the miles we’ve walked. But in the challenge of an idea, we’ll notice that familiar traveling companion. And we’ll know there are many miles yet to cover.