People want to be liked. We all crave attention and affection and we all reject shame. When we get embarrassed, we send a thug version of ourselves to the forefront to do our fighting for us. We’re at the top of the food chain just under fear. We don’t want to be in a relationship to hear the words “I love you,” we want to be in a relationship to say the words “I love you.” We want to feel needed, and exceptional and we have to feel insignificant. We want to ace a hearing test. We are binary creatures; if we’re the plaintiff, we want to win every dollar. If we’re the defendant, we want to guard every penny. We want to make more money than last year. We don’t want to get cancer or die in our cars and we want the same for our loved ones. We go out on weekends to try to have fun. We’re desperate to be understood. We want to know someone else has felt it too. We hate being judged unfairly. We want to make the person that we heard wasn’t all that into us change their mind and admit that they had us wrong. We want sunny skies with a chance of killer tornadoes, just to keep music sounding good. We take hours upon hours to admit to self consciousness. We don’t know exactly how to pleasure each other.
We just want love. In any and every form.
So the apocalypse didn’t happen.
But– ten days ago– an unconscionable tragedy made me feel like the world was actually crumbling into decay. Now, ten days later, I’m getting off the phone with my four-year-old cousin. She’s talking my ear off about her three-page letter to Santa, telling me of the extra chocolate chips she helped bake into the cookies she’ll leave out for him. And I can’t tear my thoughts from the kids who will not have the chance to leave Santa cookies tonight. Who will never have the chance to graduate from bunny-ears to loop-de-loop shoelace tying. Or to unwrap their presents from Santa, still hidden in closets and under beds. Or to channel their inner artists and bring home some haphazardly fashioned, damn beautiful gingerbread houses that were supposed to be the day’s project on December 14th. Your childhood, your adolescence, your lives, to be lived with vim and vigor and infinite possibility: cruelly cut away from existence. Today, I can’t get you out of my mind. Today, I’m sending stockings of prayers and gingerbread cookies up to you.
This is It
and I am It
and You are It
and so is That
and He is It
And She is It
and It is It
and That is That.
-James Broughton, American poet and poetic filmmaker
And so it goes.
So, since that we’ve sorted that out….
A person susceptible to “wanderlust” is not so much addicted to movement as committed to transformation.
Pico Iyer’s onto something here.