Sunday, November 25, 2012

on the fragility of life.

i thought about opening this with a few different stories that we've all heard before like...
the time a father and daughter got in a fight right before one of them lost their life in a car accident
or the time someone found out they had cancer and three days later they passed away,

but we've all heard those before, right?

one major theme of my current struggles is fragility.
because life is very fragile,
the human body is so fragile,
and our minds are so very fragile.

and after having a lot of things taken away from me like some relationships, my own health, my good grades, my car, money, some clothes and shoes, my good report with people, my reputation with some, etc...

i suddenly have found myself a different person entirely.

the cliche statement
"everything you have today could be gone tomorrow"
is the truth.

and i started feeling just... anger, i suppose, for all the times i have taken everything for granted.

i mean...
my closet is still amazing.
my hips and my legs and my feet are functional
and i can still dance.
my family is together. and loves each other.
i am still in love with adam reid and that is a blessing.
i have a rockin laptop and a great camera.
i have amazing friends.
my puppy is still cute and here and loyal.
i have plans to reconnect with three old friends this week.
i have so many service opportunities presented to me.
i am literate.
i am healthy.
i am strong.

and at any moment in my life,
any of those things can be ripped from me.

i don't want to say that i live with morbidity,
but things just.... well, they DIE! all the time!

and i look at people who don't have the choice to leave,
like my grandmother with her alzheimer's who is slowly leaving us every day...

and then i look at people like my love's father who made the choice to leave his beautiful family,
or even people who live under the same roof who don't share loving exchanges,
or friends who slowly slip away from each other

and i want to SHAKE these people!

why would you make that choice when there are so many other people who don't even have that choice but are forced into it?
why would you let hatred or fear creep in and take hold of you?

i can promise you,
that assuming anything...
assuming that time will take care of forgiveness,
assuming that space will make your love grow fonder,
assuming that you will have the chance to make amends,
assuming that your home will still be standing when you pull up...

that is never wise.
i don't care if that is comfortable.
i don't care if you think that is what is best for you at that time.
it's foolish.

you work to gain appreciation.
it is work.
and it is the best and most prolific work you will ever do.

if you have a hard time forgiving? work harder.
if you have a hard time staying happy? work harder.
if you have a hard time maintaining old friendships? work harder.

you just have to work harder and stop making excuses.
you have to realize what you have, what you need, and what you want
and work for it.

because bones break and tires pop and your family will die. they will.

and there are messages everywhere telling you to be grateful already!
there are those who have been on the other side...
where one day they up and lost everything
and they beg people to appreciate what they have,
to say i love yous and thank yous and how are yous
because that may be your last chance.

they beg people to hold on to things,
to cast out fear
and just live
and love

and we ignore them!

assumptions, i think, show a lack of appreciation for possibility.
assumptions are a foolish confidence in a status quo and its endurance.

so honestly?
live life with a little morbidity if it makes you appreciate the fragility of the things we cherish.
have those little "death, dying, ripped from me like a bandaid" thoughts when you're hugging people and writing letters and driving your car and eating and traveling and shopping and working out and whenever.
and cherish... absolutely cherish those moments.

don't channel it into fear. channel it into i-better-get-my-act-together-and-appreciate-what-i-have.

because life works like waves... and sometimes it's nice and you can wade around
and sometimes it's a fatal tsunami.

and there is no telling.

life is fragile.
handle with care.
that is all.

i'm off to spend some time with my family and away from this computer screen.



  1. dead on. I have lost everything in my life at several points..everything from my parents to my favorite sweater (LOTS in between of course, sweater not as important as parents.)and wake up in the mornings thinking that it HAS to be an amazing day to wear an amazing outfit and to talk amazing to amazing people I love. Every single day counts and on the days that i don't particularly feel that I know I have to work harder. You are right, life is fragile and it is only for a little while..large shout out to you today Ayley, for which I will stay in my 5 inch heels, eat colorful macaroons, kiss my babies double the amount and tell my husband he's the hottest, sweetest man I know.


    Have you ever thought about what protects our hearts?
    Just a cage of rib bones and other various parts
    So it's fairly simple to cut right through the mess
    And to stop the muscle that makes us confess

    And we are so fragile
    And our cracking bones make noise
    And we are just breakable, breakable
    Breakable girls and boys

    And you fasten my seatbelt because it is the law
    In your two tone death trap I finally saw
    A piece of love in your face that bathed me in regret
    Then you drove me to places I'll never forget

    And we are so fragile
    And our cracking bones make noise
    And we are just breakable, breakable
    Breakable girls and boys

    And we are so fragile
    And our, our cracking bones make noise
    And we are just breakable, breakable
    Breakable girls

    Breakable, breakable
    Breakable girls
    Breakable, breakable
    Breakable girls and boys

  3. "then you drove me to places i'll never forget"...that's where you are now. you are driven to see life through new eyes. you aren't being lazy or casual about the beauty of life right now. though you aren't usually those things, but especially now. this is quite the beautiful time for you.

  4. Ayley! This! I have been thinking about this so much lately. Before we moved to NY my life was turned upside down with that kind of fragility you wrote about and I can't stop did all of that happen. How is someone I love so much just...gone the next day. How is someone else's health just gone...the next day! Etc. Etc. You know it will happen someday. But you never think it will be tomorrow. I always thought it would be so amazing to live in NY and now I am here and it IS amazing but I'm so far from my people. I think everyday about missed opportunities with my friends and family. It's hard finding a balance of having to leave family and live our lives anyway and making family a priority. Everyday is a blessing and so important. I am sorry things have been rough for you too. Trials like this teach us so much. Even though we would never wish them on ourselves. You are so courageous.

  5. Freak, missy! This is cutting me to the core in the most beautiful way. Thank you! Thank you.

  6. i really like the word fragile, and people don't use it enough to describe life (relationships... love... happiness... etc.)

    excellent post.


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