We’re all born to broken people on their most honest day of living and since that first breath; We’ll need grace that we’ve never given I’ve been haunted by standard red devils and white ghosts and it’s not only when these eyes are closed these lies are ropes that I tie down in my stomach, but they hold this ship together tossed like leaves in this weather and my dreams are sails that I point towards my true north, stretched thin over my rib bones, and pray that it gets better but it won’t won’t, at least I don’t believe it will so I’ve built a wooden heart inside this iron ship, to sail these blood red seas and find your coasts. don’t let these waves wash away your hopes this war-ship is sinking, and I still believe in anchors pulling fist fulls of rotten wood from my heart, I still believe in saviors but I know that we are all made out of shipwrecks, every single board washed and bound like crooked teeth on these rocky shores so come on and let’s wash each other with tears of joy and tears of grief and fold our lives like crashing waves and run up on this beach come on and sew us together, tattered rags stained forever we only have what we remember
I am the barely living son of a woman and man who barely made it but we’re making it taped together on borrowed crutches and new starts we all have the same holes in our hearts… everything falls apart at the exact same time that it all comes together perfectly for the next step but my fear is this prison; that I keep locked below the main deck I keep a key under my pillow, it’s quiet and it’s hidden and my hopes are weapons that I’m still learning how to use right but they’re heavy and I’m awkward; always running out of fight so I’ve carved a wooden heart, put it in this sinking ship hoping it would help me float for just a few more weeks because I am made out of shipwrecks, every twisted beam lost and found like you and me all scattered out on the sea so come on let’s wash each other with tears of joy and tears of grief and fold our lives like crashing waves and run up on this beach come on and sew us together, just some tattered rags stained forever we only have what we remember
My throat it still tastes like house fire and salt water I wear this tide like loose skin, come on and rock me to sea if we hold on tight we’ll hold each other together and not just be some fools rushing to die in our sleep all these machines will rust I promise, but we’ll still be electric shocking each other back to life your hand in mine, my fingers in your veins connected our bones grown together in time our hands entwined, your fingers in my veins braided our spines grown stronger inside because are church is made out of shipwrecks from every hull these rocks have claimed but we pick ourselves up, and try and grow better through this change so come on yall and let’s wash each other with tears of joy and tears of grief and fold our lives like crashing waves and run up on this beach come on and sew us together, were just tattered rags stained forever we only have what we remember
“My scars are a testament to the love and the relationship that I had for and with that person. And if the scar is deep, so was the love. So be it. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are a testament that I can love deeply and live deeply and be cut, or even gorged, and that I can heal and continue to live and continue to love. And the scar tissue is stronger than the original flesh ever was. Scars are a testament to life. Scars are only ugly to people who can’t see. As for grief, you’ll find it comes in waves. When the ship is first wrecked, you’re drowning, with wreckage all around you. Everything floating around you reminds you of the beauty and the magnificence of the ship that was, and is no more. And all you can do is float. You find some piece of the wreckage and you hang on for a while. Maybe it’s some physical thing. Maybe it’s a happy memory or a photograph. Maybe it’s a person who is also floating. For a while, all you can do is float. Stay alive. In the beginning, the waves are 100 feet tall and crash over you without mercy. They come 10 seconds apart and don’t even give you time to catch your breath. All you can do is hang on and float. After a while, maybe weeks, maybe months, you’ll find the waves are still 100 feet tall, but they come further apart. When they come, they still crash all over you and wipe you out. But in between, you can breathe, you can function. You never know what’s going to trigger the grief. It might be a song, a picture, a street intersection, the smell of a cup of coffee. It can be just about anything…and the wave comes crashing. But in between waves, there is life. Somewhere down the line, and it’s different for everybody, you find that the waves are only 80 feet tall. Or 50 feet tall. And while they still come, they come further apart. You can see them coming. An anniversary, a birthday, or Christmas, or landing at O’Hare. You can see it coming, for the most part, and prepare yourself. And when it washes over you, you know that somehow you will, again, come out the other side. Soaking wet, sputtering, still hanging on to some tiny piece of the wreckage, but you’ll come out. Take it from an old guy. The waves never stop coming, and somehow you don’t really want them to. But you learn that you’ll survive them. And other waves will come. And you’ll survive them too. If you’re lucky, you’ll have lots of scars from lots of loves. And lots of shipwrecks.”—
I found myself walking around an unfamiliar place. I was aware that this was not life, that somehow I reached whatever came next. My idea of heaven. My elevated state of consciousness. It was completely new to me. It was an empty, concrete environment.
It was the blank canvas of my heart and mind.
Everyone I walked by I have seen at some point in my life.
I recognized them.
I knew them.
With everyone I encountered, structures in the background began to grow, differentiating in size. The more I cared about someone, the higher the structure grew, resembling their impact on my life. I realized I was constructing a city based on how much I cared about the people in my life.
I recognized my family walking by me very quickly. Too quickly to talk.
I ran into someone from high school who I cared about but who I only spoke to for about a month of time. We were dressed in scarves and plaid pea coats, as if it was the fall. There was a hug and a laugh and the journey continued.
I found myself in a crowd of people dressed in the shadow of a growing, changing skyline.
The ground began to shake as some of the buildings began to give way. They would crumble and leave a cloud of dust.
I do my thing and you do your thing. I am not in this world to live up to your expectations, And you are not in this world to live up to mine. You are you, and I am I, and if by chance we find each other, it’s beautiful. If not, it can’t be helped.
Someone who truly loves you will be kind, infinitely supportive, and genuinely happy to see you. They will love you for the person you are, flaws and neuroses included, rather than for some bullshit good-on-paper reason like looks or credentials. If you screw up, they will give you a million second chances, because as long as you want to be with them, they will want to be with you. They will sit with you in the ER all night and let you know it’s okay to be scared. They won’t be afraid to be naked in front of you, literally and figuratively.
before cell phone and portable technological life devices, a plane ride was a means of opening a world of communication with someone you would most likely never hear from again. to have one of the greatest conversations of your lifetime with a person, who you know and will somewhat purposely will never reenter your life, in today’s age of headphones, excel spreadsheets and kindles, makes it that much more memorable—especially if they have free drink coupons they are cool enough to share. cheers.
And kind and courteous is a life I’ve heard But it’s nice to say that we played in the dirt my dear Cause here we are, Here we are Here we are We’re still here What a beautiful mess this is It’s like taking a guess when the only answer is yes
Through timeless words, and priceless pictures We’ll fly like birds, not of this earth And times they turn, and hearts disfigure But that’s no concern when we’re wounded together And we tore our dresses, and stained our shirts But it’s nice today, oh the wait was so worth it.
my mom returned from buffalo with a brochure on fences.
she showed us the fence they picked out to go around the pool during her most recent trip to visit her boyfriend of 5 months. now my sisters are arguing the reasons why they are not allowed to have TVs in their new rooms. their new rooms—8 hours away from this house in New Jersey, which will be sold and 8 hours from Chicago. upon telling my mom i was surprised it was only 8 hours from my city, and she goes on to cut me off about a story of a guy on the plane who was chewing tobacco.
i guess they are similar.
my house and family are being taken from underneath me and continuing a life bigger and better than i could ever hope for them. although even now when i come home and i immediately fall back into the same role i grew up with. now with my mother who not only works 3 jobs, takes care of 6 kids but now is distracted by the thrall of a new love, one that is shared by a first love in high school, it feels like i am here everyday and it’s nothing out of the ordinary. i am still cut off and given jobs. my mom promised she would come with me, being a nurse, to the doctor to talk about bloodwork results. instead she gets a manicure/pedicure so she looks top notch for her doctor boyfriend.
if there is one thing that leaves me feeling more empty than anything else, it is how much i want to feel at home; come home.
there have been glimpses, but they all manage to pack themselves away, especially when i need them the most.
"But most of our familiarity was hard-earned, strong and resilient familiarity, dredged up from mystery, difference, conflict and sometimes even from anger and despair. As a result, we often had plenty of mystery in our relationship. We had to create most of our familiarity, but it was the kind of familiarity we could depend on to pull us back together.”
i may not have the coolest life. i may not have the most up-to-date chic wardrobe. i may not be completely organized. i may not come from money. i may want instant gratification a little too much. i may not have a stable nuclear family. i may not think i’m in the wrong. i may not have my life entirely together. i may not always know the right thing to do. i may not have crazy-awesome hobbies. i may not have the most romantic and eloquent vocabulary. i may have more blond moments than i like to admit. i may not be able to inspire and instill in others as much as i like. i may think and over-analyze too much. i may not be as confident or have a lot of obvious sex appeal. i may not be on top of the hippest music and fashion trends. i may be really sensitive and sometimes oversensitive. i may find the greatest joys in the littlest of things. i may not always handle a stressful situation the best that i know how. i may not be the best at what i do. i may have too high of expectations. i may not have the best hair or know exactly what to do with it. i may not be very optimistic. i may not have the best body. i may not have a strong political stance. i may not play an instrument (i was never allowed to). i may have my bad days. i may lose control. i may make mistakes. i may not be good enough.
“I wondered if that was how forgiveness budded; not with the fanfare of epiphany, but with pain gathering its things, packing up, and slipping away unannounced in the middle of the night.”—The Kite Runner, Khaled Hosseini
bestest of friends. wearing my new favorite shirt. free ice cream. visited with my favorite bossmanfriend. yummy dinners and long walks with my daily dose of red headed sanity. taking advantage of a huge southwest airlines sale and seeing a long loved best friend in a city i have yet to travel. i painted my nails blue. long talks with my mother who admitted she is in a contest with me “down the aisle” (who says that?)