Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Daniel

Tonight I had one of the most amazing experiences ever. Daniel and I sat on the tailgate of his truck, pretending to be farmers and smoking cigarettes, as we waited to take our A&P lab practicum final. (Is that redundant?)

As he told me the tale of his crazy baby mama, I knew that in that very instant I had found a kindred spirit. Here was a man with pink hair and soulful brown eyes (and OH MY GOD those cheekbones) who was in the sort of pain that I fully - at this very moment - am able to comprehend. As we talked, I knew that a design greater than the one I am familiar with had brought us together for just this one instant - just to help each other without even realizing what we were doing.

He asked me how I handle, as a human, being a selfish creature while still maintaining a life with my son. I explained to him that what I have learned is that there is a difference between being selfish and practicing self-preservation. One can exist in this world, having their needs met, while still managing to meet the needs of those around them...whether they be children, co-workers, friends, etc. He told me that he has had many conversations recently with many people but that was the first thing that had actually made sense him.

In the midst of our discussions on Walt Whitman, Edgar Allen Poe, Kenny Rogers, Buddha, Whitney Houston, and others, he pulled his guitar from the cab of his truck and began to strum as we talked. It was possibly one of the most peaceful moments of my entire life.

He looked me right in the eye and said, "You know, I guess what it comes down to is me figuring out if I really love her. Because if I really love her I'll be able to just let her go because I need to ensure, for my own peace of mind, that she is happy and that I am doing more than just surviving. If I don't truly love her then I won't be able to let her go because that means that she's really more of a fixation to me, and that is no way to live."

Daniel reminded me of the fact that it is not enough to simply live this life and try to be happy. We must strive to in fact be worthy of happiness. We do so by knowing, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that we are survivors. Not because of our pain or our experiences, but just because we are alive. The goal should not be to make peace, but rather to be peace in the midst of the crazy.

"Apart from the pulling and hauling stands what I am." ~ Walt Whitman

I had forgotten that for a moment. Thank you, Daniel, for reminding me of what it means to be me. Today was a good day.

1 comment:

Addie said...

what a wonderful post - I almost want to steal it and post it on my blog... or maybe I will just send people over to read yours....