More than the Sum of My Parts
We contemplate the idea of fate, if it exists, and if so, why us? Why our spines? Why our lives? Why are we, of all the people in the world, the ones afflicted with surgeries and hospitals and appointments that never end. Why do we suffer with health, loss, love, life - and why do we continue to stand here, in the midst of our lives, acting, playing, pretending, doing whatever we can to ensure that the world never sees the weaknesses we feel.
We do it because there's no other choice, because (if you believe in fate) we were marked a long time ago and left with no alternative but to do what we could to survive the experiences that have been thrown on us. We feel like we're drowning at times, there's a sea of paperwork and medication that's roving and quivering and pulling us down as the waves hit us again and again. And we still swim. We swim because that's all we can do; our choices are limited to surviving or not, and we choose to do it.
We find joy where we can. In colouring books, in endless gardens, in laughter and poorly timed spine-related jokes. We find our happiness wherever we can, and that action, that simple desire to continue on, has tugged and twisted and given us the power to find our happiness wherever we need to. In colouring books and endless gardens, in bad jokes about a doctor, a lawyer, a clown, and a rabbi walking into a bar (and the bartender says "What is this, some kind of joke?") We find this happiness and we cling to it, because we all know things won't always go according to plan, and we need our happiness whenever we can get it.
We're built from scraps of metal and scraps of our own humanity; the little parts of us that are left after the poking and the prodding and the sensation that all dignity has been stolen away before we were even given a chance to live and experience life as it's meant to be.
We're built from failed dreams and stubborn hopes that refuse to let go of us. We're built by skilled hands and our own raw determination to do this, to win at life (in a realistic sense, not a 'Charlie Sheen' sense.)
We have to face our lives every day, to get up, to live, to do whatever it takes to pour that bowl of cereal or sit in that classroom or toss our children into the air. And we do it because we made it this far; we're here, alone in our own pain, but not in our experiences. We have each other, even if we barely feel like we have ourselves on some days. We can lean and cry and soothe and laugh, and we'll do it together, for as long as we need to. For as long as it takes to find another joy.
Because above all else, my friends, we are people, part of humanity, part of everything. And we are, above all else, more than the sum of our parts.