When people say the word ‘love’, I usually recoil. I say that’s a real big word, one I don’t really know how to say. My language is rooted in past experiences & it pulls up memories of difficult feelings when it registers the word love.
And then there are moods like today. I see pain around me. I hear angst push in between the pauses of someone trying to frame their plea to me, in words that will convince me to give them what they want. I feel rage spill through the misspellings of a hot take. I see it all. And all I feel is a cool breath pass through me.
For one person here, I say there’s no beating hate with hate. To another, I pat their arm metaphorically, as I infuse my words with gentleness. A text here saying I see the stories you’re hesitant to tell & how brave you are to try anyway. A laugh sent along as a gift of sunshine bursting through a heavy evening.
Later, I think of the disappointments, the rejections, the bumps & cuts in my connections with each of these people. The wounds seem healed but the scars are there, like tattoos telling a story with quiet resilience. What would happen if one of them doesn’t care? If she stabbed me in the back? If he forgot about me? If they decided my story wasn’t worth carrying?
I feel something else trickle through each of these cracks. It’s warm breath passing through me. Healing & the memory of it passes over my being, leaving only tattoos & more seeing.
And I think, maybe it’s not such a big word after all.