I tried to think like a ten-year old girl, and then fifteen, and then a thirty year old woman. Now I’m sixty and I often cringe because of such petty things like feelings and conditions. All I can see is just how nice it would be to wake up and go watch the morning glory bloom with a love that takes form in a human being. Have I figured out the spirit of life? Let’s see.
When I was ten, I dreamed about a boy who could speak only my language and even in the midst of our confusing adolescent labyrinth, we would still be able to place our ears onto the wall of life and listen to each other’s heartbeat. Even our anatomical parts were perfectly aligned. At fifteen, I left God and decided that atheism was the new found glory because God didn’t answer any of my prayers about teen angst and why my parents had no interest in understanding how all the smoke that I clasped in my hands seemed to seep into my skin rather than flow away between the space of my fingers—because I let the world ruin me. See, God had no say in when I started to think for myself because I met a boy who asked me questions that revealed more than just my growing and glowing body—the female essence blooming not only with deviancy but also with contempt for the indoctrination that the world had showered me in. I was going to become different, I said. At which point, I grew slowly /or maybe too quickly/ into a pseudo life-like person, faking adulthood that’s filled with the horrors of self-deprecation and self-depravation. I am a doormat—so please, please step on me. I met everyone who saw me in my early twenties as a beaten bush that had not a single clue on how to make herself happy or at least put on a mask to play pretend. Shaking hands with strangers and waiting for them to judge me on my droopy eyebrows – I was supposedly born with an “apologetic face”. That’s the one fact that will not change – I’m a doormat and I loved it. But being a thirty year old woman, I realized that all the boys that I’ve ever fell in love with stepped into my home and washed the bottom of his boots with the hairs on my skin—it was so grimy with love and pain. I had an argument with a philosopher once at thirty about what God is supposed to take a form in. By that point, I had already known enough science to articulate a concise debate on the nonexistence of such a being, and rather the existence of inconsistencies—how the universe is the most intricate arrangement of randomness that I have ever laid my eyes upon. And in each of us, a universe. He was a universe. It was like I was a doormat to it all— a child from ten to sixty— waiting to fix another human being because why not? Because the world was so kind and so broken, because it was too damn pretty to be alive, because someone had to be there for him or her to live, because I had loved everything that had ever been genetically connected to the stars. At sixty, I have lived and loved so profoundly that death was unfathomably inviting. My child will know the woes of being blindlessly kind, but I want her to be still, and hush, and love herself before she ever dares to love the next boy that will be in bed with her.
So I dream on— even when my eyes are wide open and all I see is the sea.
a message from Anonymous
national moment of silence 2014 (for victims of police brutality)
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