I say a bad word in this post… You’ve been warned.
“For the ones who are told only to speak when they are spoken to and then are never spoken to.” -Anis Mojgani
I have yet to decide what this post is about. I just need to write, so here I am. There is something that I want to say, but I’m not sure what it is. So, I’m going to list (my favorite pastime) some things that this post is not about. Press play on this spotify playlist, and I hope by the end you feel less alone than you did before.
What This Post Is Not About
-It’s not about how my grad school applications are in and the deadlines have passed and all I can do is wait and wait and feel inadequate and wait.
-It’s not about how seemingly everyone I know is getting married or engaged or acquiring a boyfriend and the only boys who are interested in me are the homeless men on Marta and even though I’m a feminist to the core I can’t help but have moments where I feel like I’m not good enough.
-It’s not about how it has been 2 years and 3 months since I’ve been overseas which is the longest I have gone without traveling out of the country since I was 13 years old and I feel like I cannot breathe this Georgia air one minute longer.
-It’s not about how Syria won’t leave my thoughts or my heart and I find myself standing in the grocery store trying to decide on which almond milk to get and I hate how much food I have to eat.
-It’s not about how “Facebook strait up ruins lives” (that’s a sister quote) and social media is the worst… I say as I type on my blog
-It’s not about how fall makes me feel dead and alive all at the same time.
-It’s not about how I just want to sit down and write a poem or a story, but my inspiration is dwindling and I worry I’m running out of things to say.
-It’s not about how the guys sitting at the table next to me in this coffee shop are playing chess.
-It’s not about how beautiful Atlanta has been to me lately.
-It’s not about how hard today was even though there was nothing in it to make it so.
-It’s not about all the feelings I have bursting from the tips of my fingers and top of my head and breaking through my rib cage and exploding from every part of my body except for the one place it would be useful: my mouth.
It’s not about any of those things (except by listing those, I made it about them). But really it’s not, I promise. I’m writing in spite of those things. I’m writing about hope and peace and being ok in this moment in this body in this place. Because it’s really hard sometimes, and I know I’m not alone in this. Things are hard for really dumb reasons. Life is heavy and you can’t articulate why, but that’s ok. Here’s what I want to say. Shake the dust. When you make a zero on your Spanish quiz because, well, senioritis, shake the dust. When you can’t walk into Walmart without thinking about orphans, shake the dust. When you get tired of going on adventures by yourself, shake the dust. When every photo or mirror makes you feel ugly and hungry and tired, shake the fucking dust. When seeing airplanes flying over your head makes you cry, shake the dust. When you’re tired of driving and thinking and walking and thinking and sitting and thinking, shake the dust. When the future is terrifying and you’re tired of explaining why you don’t have a “real” job or a boyfriend or any idea what you’re doing with your life, shake the dust. Why do we hold on to it? Why do we let it sift down into our souls and pollute the way we breathe? Why do we cling to our human hearts no matter how black and cracked they are? We are so free. The heavy things are always going to be heavy, but we are not. We are full of light. But it’s the dust we hold on to. We could brush it off so easily, but we let it gather and block out every good thing. Hope lies behind the dust. And it’s time to let the hope in. Do you realize that these walls surrounding your spirit are simply walls of dust? You thought it was stone, didn’t you? So did I. It’s not. The stones broke and crumbled such a long time ago. This is what is left. See it for what it is. Call it by its name. Dust. Blow it away. Brush it off. Shake the dust. Let love come in like the wind and stay like the air we breathe.
Thank you Anis Mojgani for the inspiration.