• Mathura Hawley


“ ...my greatest wish is that I will believe in myself, to breathe again."

In my mind, I can stand at the edge of the waterfall with Luke at my side and smell, feel, hear and see the molecules of loveliness and beauty envelope me. I feel lucky to have these sensory memories, having been a witness and victim to the darker sides of our world. These moments, standing in the woods, are the ones that escort me down the gray, lonely sidewalk that has become my life, and I am able to easily access the feeling of being there, arms in the air, eyes closed, when things are at their worst. I am starting to accept some things about the way life works, and it is a mixed bag of maturity. To accept the things that have happened to me is to try and understand and forgive the darkest parts of the human soul, the parts people don’t like to acknowledge, like taking pain out on a child or transferring any kind of anger onto another. Like pretending to love someone just to survive. Like selling out or literally selling another human being to make your own life more comfortable. Like having a chance or even a second chance with someone you love and allowing your anger to push them away. So much loss. So much pain. Love and pain management should be taught in school, so when we are adults we have the tools we actually need and at least have a shot at making it. There are too many traps to fall into now when we are lost, too many distractions to make us feel fulfilled and busy. But not happy. Happiness, I am finding, is a moving target, and certainly not a goal. It is a by-product of fulfillment, and that is why in this age where we struggle for work, to raise a family, or to meet someone who is able to intimately love us, it gets harder and harder to find. My parents were poor and happy. They had so little they were able to enjoy it all. Someday, when I can put to rest the pain I endured as a kid, find someone that understands love, and give most of my stuff away, my greatest wish is that I will believe in myself, to breathe again. Then, I hope that wherever I am, the rush of that waterfall, the sound of the wind in the trees, and the cool air on the back of my hands not only saves me from the darkness of heartache, but becomes what I feel every moment, every day.

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