Touch me. Oh, run your fingers through my hair and caress my head. Whisper gently to me. The world has been too harsh and I have been harsh within it.
The world has run me down and scraped away at all I am. I forgot what love feels like. Tenderness feels like a foreign concept. How do you define softness? Is there such a thing as a quiet mind and steady heart? The world has run me down and scraped away at all I am that I forgot what it was like to be kind, to myself, and in the world.
I’m not a human anymore. I’m a robot, but with some faulty wiring that causes me to act out and breakdown. My mind, among the loudness of thought and the chaos of the day, briefly pauses to attempt to collect itself. “Recalibrating…how to recalibrate? Ca-calibrating. Re-recalibrating. Re-re-calibrating.” It’s rough and jagged. It falls apart and breaks itself down so often that it hangs by a thread. Though I’m aware of the thread it hangs by I’ve forgotten how to ask for help. Or rather…I’m not sure of the specific kind of help I need. My faulty wiring has been coming loose for so long that new issues arise and get backed up with the old ones.
There’s a dictator around me and inside me. It changes each moment. One minute it’s my preconceived ideas of how the world should be. The next moment the dictator becomes my hopes amplified of how I wish the world would be. Then it’s how I wish I could be in the world. Then the dictator becomes what other’s expect of me, or requests they’ve given me. Then a war breaks out. The only one fighting is me. It’s me against myself. It’s me against my own perception of my sheltered world. So I forget what is actually out there. I forget how good humanity can be because I’ve been lost in my own dictatorship.
Touch me. Break the mesmerism of my own harshness, please! Oh, run your fingers through my hair and caress my head. Whisper gently to me. I forgot what love feels like. Tenderness doesn’t exist. Remind me. Won’t you? I need a gentle hand and a soft word. This thread won’t hang forever. Please catch it before it falls or braid it so it can’t break.
My lungs are tired and needing reprieve. They beg and ache for a few minutes of stillness. They ask for a break in the day and from the forever encroaching mind to remember what it’s like to take a full breath. Clenched muscles and feelings that suffocate make breathing fully a task that must be checked off a to-do list. The end of the day brings a full system diagnosis and analysis.
“System processing…system processing.” The mind scans through everything that happened during the day, everything that was said, and all that was felt. “How did we do?”
Like the Flight Director of the Apollo 13 Mission Control the stressed mind checks in with each part of the system. Some parts of the system the Flight Director Mind intuitively understands needs acknowledgment and encouragement. Then there are other parts that require the Flight Director to radio in to find out how they are holding up. “Hang in their shoulders, back, we’ll get to sit down soon. Heart, talk to me. How’s it going over there?”
“I don’t know…” The heart begins, “Actually, yes, I do know, but there’s too much to say.”
The Flight Director understands, “Well, if you can wait a few minutes we can have a chat when we get back to the room. Lungs, what’s your status?”
“I can’t…breathe. It’s too…hard.” The Lungs croak, “Houston…”
“…We have a problem” The heart cries and sirens begin to go off throughout the system.
Mission Control tried so hard to keep things together but the Flight Director had no reinforcements. The system shuts down in sections.
Heart and Lungs are the first to go. The Flight Director tries to single handedly keep the system semi-functional but its lost control. Help has been long overdue and the slow breakdown of the system has now reached a point where attention is desperately needed.
Touch me. Oh, run your fingers through my hair and caress my head. Whisper sweet, soft words to me. The world has been too harsh and I have been harsh in it. Remind me what love, and tenderness feel like. Remind me how good humanity can be. Open my eyes to a world where the system doesn’t have to put itself back together all on its own. But most importantly, stick with me, hold on tight, while I rewire, and stitch a renewed version of myself. This will get messy and reinforcements will be necessary to configure a complete system update.