It's been two and a half years now since Josie left. She died, and the "me" I am today was born out of a completely annihilated wasteland of psyche into what I can only describe as a shell of a body, bereft of its former soul and its child. If that sounds harsh, so be it - I felt like a useless bag of flesh and bones after Josie died. My mind was in pieces on the floor and there I was, scrabbling like a mortally wounded animal, trying to scoop up pieces of myself from muddy, bloody substrate. It was useless of course. I sat there psychologically against a wall, gathering up the ingredients of wits out of the air. People rolled helpful things toward me as I waited in the quarantine of despair and madness.
What that experience did to me was cut me to the quick. Even after I'd stuck myself back together again, there were huge pieces I never found. I stuffed the holes with plastic bags and paper, taping the gaps shut in an effort to keep the wind out of my bones until new parts of me formed to fill the spaces. The layers of pretense that covered me before were gone. They never came back either.
Nowadays I am a raw human being. Take me to the deep forest and dump me there: I'd find a way to survive. I've slowed down. My eyes are open to everything; my ears hear it all. I'm fifty percent prey, fifty percent predator and one hundred percent alive. Through the monotony of a boring day, I find things I've never seen before like a little child.
All my life, I've felt things deeply - strongly: that's been me, all along. But now I admit the emotions I feel to myself and let myself really feel them rather than trying to escape or distract myself with other things. Pain is like a huge crevasse in the earth to me: sometimes it's like being carved in half length ways. My fibers strain for one another across the gap, trying to protect the heart inside. Joy is like a bubble in which I float, full up with laughter and magnificence. Exuberance takes flight and I'm flung across vast distances like an eagle.
The love I have for my child is fierce and without limit - I would die for her in a second without a thought and I've felt this way since well before she was born. It's a wonderful feeling.
Falling in love with another person is different: it is like a dance between the two people, alternating between coyness and pursuing, one to the other. One steps up - the other steps away with a choreographed grace older than the sands of time. They play, snatching little pieces of armor off each other as they go - distracting with glances and smiles. But one day, under the right circumstances, one person turns in the dance to find the other standing directly in front of them. The defenses are down: it's go time. And as they look into each other's eyes, which really are the doorways to the soul, neither one looks away and a mutual realization strikes. Hearts stop beating for a moment...then they both fall off that high place into a completely new world.
They're big, these emotions. But how exciting this is: to be alive. I'm glad I am alive. We may all be made of stardust, but we're certainly lucky incarnations of it to be able to exist like this, in a sensory state. We are like the fingers of the universe, reaching out. What is the meaning of life? Maybe it's what you make it, when you let go and stop worrying about what the meaning of life is...