Taking a half-truth and making it whole
This is a quote from one of Henry Rollins spoken word shows. Henry Rollins is a fairly popular guy around our apartment; it isn't too rare for one of us [Matt and myself, that is] to randomly bust out with "Everything was fine until the motherfucker came." The above quote, however, is from one of Rollins's more serious pieces. On the DVD we both have, it comes right before my favorite piece, one where Rollins talks about watching his best friend die, and all of the aftermath of that experience.
i've been thinking a lot about this quote, about the fact that parts of you die all of the time. This, I have--after much deliberation--decided is quite true. And sometimes, it is beautiful. And sometimes, it does hurt. But I think the thing that bothers me about this statement is the absense of in-betweens. Sometimes, a part of you dies, and it feels satisfying, or excruciating, or fitting, or just plain ok. Sometimes, the things that die are things you need: confidence, propriety, self-love, joy. Sometimes, the things that die are the things that you want to be without: obstinance, prejudice, self-pride, hate.
I think I am really connecting with this idea right now because of some events that have happened recently. In fact, it has more connection with Henry Rollins than I may have initially suggested: you see, Henry Rollins and his best friend called themselves collectively, "The Chosen One." After hearing this bit, a friend and I--two years ago--began calling ourselves the same thing. However, in the last year, specifically the last six months, The Chosen One fell apart, and fell apart hard. Both of its constituents made grievous errors; they both hurt each other, and they both somehow failed to pull it back together. Granted, they are both hard-headed, but this part of the duo is now just hurt. The pain--still--feels huge and irreversible. I made a decision to just end it, because the hurt was too much. I couldn't take it anymore, and I realized it wasn't doing me any good. In fact, it was harming me.
That part of me died. But there is an implicit circle to life: in the place of dead things, the living feed off of the fodder and grow, become stronger. When I was able to start to let things go, I took all of the energy that I was putting into trying to revive a too-dead thing, and I nurtured those that are living. They sprung up and are bearing beautiful, sustaining fruit, and for this, I feel nothing but blessed. Yes, something has died--but so many more things are living. And this, I think, is where the focus should be. There is so much beauty and support in my life, and I am probably the happiest--in new relationships, as well as in my revitalized "old" relationships--that I have been in friendships for a long time.
Which brings me to my last topic, which is a little bit of link-love for the parent blog that I find most articulate and thought-provoking. Dutch and Wood of Sweet Juniper are a "tag team" of bloggers: Dutch is a stay-at-home dad, who left his job at a law firm so that he could stay with their daughter Juniper while Wood pursued her career in law. I really support this type of family arrangement; I think the idea of a stay-at-home-dad is great, and I think it's awesome that Wood gets to do what she loves in addition to being a mom [I tell Joey all the time that I would love it if he ever decided he wanted to be a SAHD].
Anyway, Dutch recently wrote a post that really got me, and I've seriously been reading it daily, just because it is a good life statement:
"'Does Juney have a strong heart?' she asks me almost every day. I tell her it is a very strong heart. Sometimes her silly questions send me spinning, thinking not only of that tiny mortal organ inside her chest, El Corazon, but her figurative heart, the heart of pop songs and bad teenage poetry, the one that will lead her through life's greatest joys and disappointments. I felt so helpless knowing that as sure as it has its own separate rhythm, there will come a day that it will suffer, and there will be nothing for me to do but hold her bigger fist in my hand again and squeeze it, and if she'll listen I'll tell her how strong it still is, that it is never really torn or broken, but merely wounded and exposed, and that even in that state of terrible vulnerability, the most important thing to do is not let it grow cold."I don't think it can be said any better than that.