Moments that the Words Don't Reach


And just like that, I am returned, after a long stretch of resistance to writing (more on that in the coming weeks). Why this particular day, I’m not certain. What matters for now is that I’m here.

I’ve been craving physical contact with others in these frightening days. I’ve been praying for adjustments in every yoga class I attend. I’ve had the urge to grasp strangers by the shoulders. I walked into a bodywork spa for a 30-minute massage. More than usual, I long for the touch of my fiancee’s hand.

I stumbled upon a memorial to the Orlando victims yesterday in front of the Stonewall Inn. I lingered, unexpectedly comforted by the presence of the people there, unknown to me. Empty of thought, I soaked up the opportunity to share the sorrow of the week. We need each other so much more than we’d like to admit. We need to connect, to cry, to grieve together. In person, where you don’t have to use your words to articulate the sadness in your heart. You don’t have to explain your thoughts, or run after logic, or accurately describe your feelings.

Face to face, you can reach out and connect with another being. You can touch them, feel their breath, their heat, their energy. Last night, under the powerful, magical command of Florence Welch and her Machine, I connected. I jostled my neighbors in a crowded row of seats, bouncing and thrashing and swaying to the beat. The strangers to one side of me, they didn’t seem to mind. Florence told us to raise it up, and we lifted our hearts. She told us to shake it off, and we trembled. She told us we were released, and we found freedom. Together, while the drums pounded on, she reminded us that humanity has an inexorable throb, a beat. A Pulse.

We have a tremendous amount of work ahead of us, and untangling the knots of fear and hatred can be a paralyzing prospect. But every time we choose compassion, every time we offer kindness, every time love wins – that’s a slight tugging on the fray. It’s a shift toward a way of existence that celebrates life, here in the present moment of our imperfect world. Let’s choose love, more love, bountiful love, endless, overflowing love. Now and now and now.