Saturday, February 28, 2015

Humble

I think we all need something burning in the dark.

No matter how happy we are or how satisfied we become, there will always be that little pilot light in the corner of our hearts - flickering with memory and nostalgia - that just won't seem to ever extinguish.

Many people have come back into my life the last three years in an effort to rekindle that flame, see how warm the glow still feels after all of this time. Maybe it's a friendship, maybe it's an old romance, sometimes it's an old co-worker, trying to make amends over an expensive mistake. But in any case, the point remains the same: No matter how long it's been, no matter how much we've grown or changed, how far we've moved on, or how many of our own questions we've answered, that spark of human curiosity always wins out. It's a persistent little agent of our subconscious that is simply too innocently naive of rational thought to ever fade away.

Sometimes this is good. It allows bridges to be repaired, and old problems with aching joints that were weary from the weight of guilt and doubt to finally be free of the burden we inflicted upon our own selves. Many times it opens up new doors, new avenues and connections in our lives that we had gone without for so long; the light of life floods in, and the lessons we had been learning all these years finally come to fruition and reward our bravery with something new by having the courage to accept something old.

And sometimes that same curiosity is bad. It becomes an anchor to our hearts, only allowing it to move forward with painful tugs, dragging along mud and rock from the ocean floor of our psyche. With every push forward, there is a nearly equal pull back, reminding us that we failed before. That we still have something to learn, some wisdom we still have yet to extract. Worse, it can simply settle into the ground, leaving us immobile, and at the mercy of any waves or hurricanes life throws at us with no way to adapt or escape.

The inevitability of this flame is what keeps me humble. I don't reject it's existence when I feel it's fire, nor do I fully embrace it; I accept it. Walk over to it. And sit next to it. And then I watch it with a tilted head, and wonder why it moves the way it does - why it chooses to dance at certain times of the night. I refuse to be burned by it again. But I will let it close enough to keep me out of the dark.

Some people come back into my life only to feel warm again when they feel cold in their lives. And while I will always offer my companionship to anyone in need, I refuse to be used as a tool. I draw the line at being a safe haven when it's convenient only to be rejected as a human being the next moment for that same reason - convenience.

Others have come back into my life and I couldn't be more grateful at the luck, blind fate, God, or whoever or whatever had their hands on the puppet strings of time. I truly do not know where I would be today without a very select few individuals. Still others I admittedly wish (and hope) come back to visit me when they are ready to keep writing our story, to answer questions they long feared to ask... or answer.

Their time may come. Or it may never. I remain humble in that regard as well. Not every story has a happy ending. Hell, not every story even has an ending. Some stories cut off in the middle of the book and the best you can do is hope their last chapters went well without you. But until I die, I will always wait by my flickering fire, ready to talk with whomever decides to sit next to me again. 

I may sit alone sometimes, but never in the dark.

I'll always have my Curious Flame.