Mountains silhouetted in the sunlight, erupting from the earth in majestic pyramid peaks. They pierced the blue summer sky and parted the clouds, and feral beasts lived in the shadows at their feet. Hooting and screaming, filthy and tangled, these small, gangling beasts ran and loped around the bases of the mountains. Tiny feet kicking up clouds of dust and sending rocks clattering; hands with sandy backs, grime shoved beneath nails; faces freckled and brown by the sun, wide with smiles that exposed Chiclet teeth, bracketed by lines of joy caked with dirt that aged them like miniature geriatric chimpanzees. Laughing and running and kicking and shoving until the sky turned from clear blue to a haze of orange and purple, and the dark forced them to leave the empty subdivision still in construction—their mountain range of gravel and sand.
I am poor at conveying verbally how I’m feeling. Stoic is a good word to describe me, I think, when it comes to emotions. If hormones are high—if people are crying, especially—I have a tendency to tense up and be unable to communicate. I don’t share how I’m feeling aloud. I can’t share how I’m feeling aloud. I think that’s one of the reasons I have such a hard time telling people I love them.
So let me write it, instead.
Despite all the hardships I have endured—and trust me, there are plenty—over the course of my twenty short years, I have only experienced heartfelt loss twice. Circumstances forced me to grow up faster than I wanted to, but even that couldn’t prepare me for the blow of loss. Continue reading →