Breathe, breath in the air

He is a meditation. My heartbeat slows. My breath is deep. I swoon from the oxygen. I get a little high. In the same moment, I feel the boundaries of my being give way and I can feel the edges of the room. Hand hewn beams. Dog-eared paperbacks. Tiny talismans and unintentional totems. I swell three times. I forget who I am. Hours go by and I am sustained with warmth radiated from the touch of his skin and the occasional light reflected in blue eyes. This is what I imagine zen feels like.

I try to name the thing that this is. What does it remind me of? Of this one? Or that one? But comparisons fail me because this is something new. Both him and me. I am new to myself. This is all different in words I haven’t yet to express. And that is ok.

I don’t want to hold back. I don’t want to reserve who I am out of fear of reproachment or abandonment. I want him to know this incarnation and every one that came before it, even the bad parts that I tuck behind my ear most days, so as not to come off as damaged or unkempt. Those parts of me are what allowed me to become what I am today. So I keep them around, like beautiful and yet broken ornaments that you hang on the inner limbs of a Christmas tree because you can’t bring yourself to get rid of them.

And yet, I have to hold back. I am too much. I need a cooling tower around me to plunge my atomic sub-particles from overheating. I don’t know if anyone can take me at full force. And I don’t know that it’s fair to expose anyone to that. It might lack compassion and generosity. I am trying so hard with both of those.

I want to know him. I have a million questions that unfurl on a mental scroll, just waiting for answers. They give him texture. They ground him and make him tangible. They would allow me to sink into his very realness. But I don’t ask all at once, rapid fire, because there is no rush. Either we get to them one at a time, to be savored like the last bite of a great meal or the last pages of a treasured tome, or he’ll disappear and I won’t want to burden myself with knowing things about him I will lament later, wistfully. The discovery itself is the satisfaction I try to delay.

As much as I want to be around him, I need time to myself to think and wonder. In my every day life, I’ve become so accustomed to narrating the story instead of living immersed in it. What I experience, I write in my head simultaneously, one foot in life and the other on the page. This detachment has kept me safe and allowed me to survive without getting too hurt about anything. But with him, I don’t take sketches or try to capture quotes. With everyone else, I can tell you what was said and done verbatim. But with him all I have are momentary impressions, like Monet’s paintings of the Rouen Cathedral. If I close my eyes and sit in silence, I can recall them. But they dissipate into the ether before becoming concrete. I can’t count how many dates or meals or drinks or handholds or looks. All I have are flashes. And that never happens. Not until now, at least.

I’ve let him know this is different. That I am unsettled by it. But I don’t think he understands. Me, the great communicator, unable to convey what I am feeling, fearing, craving, lamenting, wishing, wanting, needing. Maybe that is for the best because it is too soon, and again, I am so very much.

I’d tell you I toss and turn, that I can’t eat or sleep or think or function. But none of that is true. I feel fine, all except for and saving the new found realization that the others who came before no longer feel as good to me. I don’t know if it is because he is new and shiny and maybe they don’t live up to their memories when suddenly and unexpectedly again in the flesh before me, asking to be adored, or if it’s something more. But I don’t really care to ponder it too much. It is what it is and I’m not making more of it in my head.

For now, he is a meditation. And I am calm in its exercise.

Edit: Ram Dass has passed. I have a lot of reading to do. But I follow @the.holistic.psychologist on Instagram, and she posted this. It seemed apt.

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