I float relatively unencumbered in this life, steadily attached to only the two people I helped to create. I wonder sometimes if I should feel lonely, in the same way someone with an all-yellow garden might wonder if they should plant something wild and red.
I harbor sentiment for distant friends and strangers almost unwittingly, and don’t realize its depth until I open a letter, see a mother kiss her newborn child’s head, or stand in the boisterous crowd of someone else’s family. I’m always surprised at how ready the lump in my throat is, as well as the laughter. I am often inexplicably touched by someone else’s life stories, anecdotes, photographs, poems, music, or thoughts. The tears or the joy rise impulsively, out of some unmapped, visceral place.
Excited teenage girls out shopping for a prom dress can evoke the same tender feelings in me me as two outcast middle-schoolers in deep conversation at a coffee shop. An elderly couple holding hands can rouse my sentiment as much as a pair of five year-olds standing at a bus stop. I feel downright gleeful when I see any display of love, whether it’s a mother bending over a stroller, or a couple who can’t stop kissing in the back row of a theater.
Yet I am alone, and in so many ways I’m grateful for solitude, and for being able to embrace my nature, which needs the retreat of waves more often than it needs the solidity of an anchor. Then again, perhaps my anchor is something I’ve always carried with me rather than let sink, and one day I’ll find myself wanting to ease it down into peaceful waters.