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  • Writer's pictureKayley Taylor

What If?

You said we are complicated, you and I. It always made me smile. For the longest time, I thought so too. Now, after all this time, I am not so sure. The riddle of our design is no more easy to solve.


We want to peek through the knot holes in fences, just to watch the wildflowers grow on the other side. To guess the colors, the grand symphony they play in the sunlight. We want to absorb that beauty, those moments, and find a way to make them everlasting. But, suppose someone catches us being silly, then what? It's the fear of being seen as less of a proper adult.


We want to stand side by side with our best friend and have bubble gum launching contests out of our mouths. Whoever is full of the most hot air, launches their gum the farthest. Seems accurate, right? We want to swing on old tractor tires suspended by a rope thrown over a willow tree, back and forth swaying above the water below, so close we can trail our fingertips across the surface. We want to have picnics underneath a large oak tree, complete with a wicker basket, red and white checkered blanket and more food than any two people can possibly eat. We want the freedom in a moment that is all our own, we want to capture the days where we belong to someone and they remain forever. But what if someone sees us in the wrong light? Will we be seen as bad influences?


We want to binge watch 12 straight hours of romance movies, cry at every ending, moan in longing with every kiss, and dream that the knight in shining armor will always rescue the damsel in distress. But we know reality will eventually sink in, and the shining armor will one day rust. The damsel in distress saves herself after years of waiting and watching her castle tumble down, stone by stone, around her. Is it okay to build walls secretly, only letting others see our strengths? How will the world react to our weaknesses?


We want the fairytale. The flights of fancy, the glass slipper that always fits perfectly, the poisoned apple that screams its deceit aloud, the library full of books where we can get lost in a thousand different worlds. Every one kind, every one magic, every one an eternity we can't be sure we will find here. The fairytale is not a false hope someone wrote to fill the pages of an empty book. It's real. It's me and you and this human story we can't help but get wrong while trying so hard to make everything right. The fairytale is faith. That's why we started with, "Once Upon a Time"... But what if someone notices we feel this way? What if someone notices there is depth where we have only allowed the surface to shine before?


A harsh judgment can tear us down, leave us broken and bleeding with wounds no one is meant to see. No one is meant to know. We build walls, we are harsh first, we push the limits, we test the waters because we are so afraid to dive in and never find the bottom. Is the unknown infinite? We search for answers our whole lives through, but in the end, did we really want to know?


We demand because we are afraid of our vulnerabilities. We bottle our emotions just to watch them fiercely shatter in the direction of those we love the most. We hide the tears behind closed doors because it is easier to smile than admit we hurt this much. We laugh out of turn, we are too loud, too quiet, too forward with our thoughts, too backward with our feelings. We are a carousel, beautiful and wild, painted bright but destined to twirl in rhythm, around and around. Circles become the only pattern we know how to weave upon this tapestry we were created us from. What if we fail? What if we hold the end of a single piece of thread our lifetime through, never daring to weave, never daring to touch the rarest masterpiece?


We want to break the rules, to set new ones, to make a difference from the grains of a legacy long lost to the sands of time. There is a reason the hourglass is transparent. If you never look, you will never see. It's hundreds of years of history striking a cord against us, finding a voice and then calling out. We hurt just to prove to ourselves we can heal. We place blame just to find a place at all. We grow wings just to pull out our own feathers to feel that breathless, weightless rush of air when we fall. We want everything from nothing, and nothing from something we cannot name. Why were we designed this way?


To be touched. It's taken me a lifetime to understand: we were designed to be touched. Heart and soul, body and mind. We were built to mystify. We are on this journey that is just out of reach, yet it walks beside us day by day. It's that connection deeper than the oceans casting waves across far off shores. It's the ebb and flow, so natural. We seek what touches us.


You touch me.

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