It isn’t typical for me to prance around wholly naked, but it happened one evening when I was home alone because I was home alone.

I stood in the mirror and meditated on my behavior over the prior few years and shame began to drip over my skin slowly, and it was like frosting being poured over a six-layer chocolate insecurity cake. But it was bitter chocolate and impossible not to turn away from the mirror in disgust.

I sat on my bed, staring at my walls in tears wondering how I’d been packaged and handled and whether I could live with being opened and distributed by strangers while maintaining my dignity. I sat on my bed for six months in fear, until remembering that no weapon formed against me shall prosper, but not just me. Everyone.

I remembered that man is not to be feared. Nor blindly revered. I remembered that we are only flesh, and no matter what story our physical body tells, we are fragile. Our hearts. Our minds. Our souls.

So I stood again naked in the mirror, and with the reassurance of my Grandma, I cried tasting my own bitter sorrow but did not turn away. I stood still in a hurricane of my own healing, and it wasn’t pretty, not something to be photographed for a spa retreat flyer but it was the truth, and the truth is that healing does not happen at the spa. It happens inside of us and ties itself so tightly to our heart that we’ll want to run away from it, so we do until realizing how relentless it is, how demanding, how unbelievably ugly it makes us feel not to acknowledge its presence. Even more, we find ourselves overcome in anger and grief when we recognize its existence forces us to fight a deeper darkness within, the one that doesn’t believe we can really heal at all.

If there existed a brain swap meet, it would be my choice to trade mine out regularly, based on available stock. Since the grand openings are in the future, we still rely heavily on other humans to move us from our regularly scheduled programs.

The Catalysts. The Alchemists. The Healers.

In retrospect, there was always a healing taking place. I didn’t realize I needed healing and I’m guessing that maybe he felt the same way. I’m also guessing we needed the exact same kind of healing. Healing forms a bond with Time that can only be broken by the patient. It’s no coincidence we are asked to be patient with our healing.

So many pieces of our lives become scattered that we can’t give anyone power over the results of our breaks because only we can identify if the pieces were indeed a part of us in the first place.

Before picking them up. Before healing.

I hate being broken but love what my heart never fails to create in the aftermath.

He is fragile like me, but we break in different places and don’t talk anymore, but if we did, I’d let him know he helped to mend my broken with his gold. I’d thank him for being a catalyst, confirm I was fearless and full of courage and fortitude to stand unblinking in the face of opposition without losing my dignity or myself.

If he were around, I’d ask for his hand to dance with his flesh, in just this fragile way.

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