Love Is Messy
"Back against the wall...and all the pieces fall"
The blue midi went on like a glove. I tucked in the white cami and smiled over my shoulder as I caught how the patterned strapless bra peaked through the fabric. Sexy has multiple definitions.
In a blink of an eye, that’s how quickly life changes, how quickly moods shift, how easily strangers turn into your first text. I stepped into my black booties the same way that I stepped into this stage of my life — ready to start off with gusto, feel pain at some point in the middle of the walk, and finish off strong and with gratitude for a day well traveled. It’s easy to feel brave and reckless when I stare at myself pounds heavier, pounds lighter. The same wasn’t true a few months ago when it poured instead of drizzled, when the exes and arrows wouldn’t wash off in the shower no matter how persistently I rubbed at the left side of my chest. Back then, it was tears in the shower, it was sentences piled up wondering how one braves pain and why mortality squeezes throats as a reminder of its existence.
So it goes.
The curling iron flirted with my hair in ways I’d forgotten that only the right tools could. There’s a reality to being twenty-something that makes living life in a messy fashion a little more acceptable. My only responsibility is myself and with every decision I make, the people I volunteer to run things by can be counted on the fingers of one hand. The first three are me. Majority wins.
I pull on my jacket. The leather feels good against my skin. No matter how faint the color, the nude lipstick will still leave its mark throughout the day. Rest assured. The shade may as well be called love.
Too many people want love that’s clean-cut and assured. Lately, I’ve been one of those people. There’s something that’s pure magic though about not knowing, I’m starting to embrace that again. It’s a “know it when you feel it” rush you don’t get when you know the exact times you’ll be reapplying lipstick or even why. The slit in my skirt reminds me how nice it is to love freely and in an organically messy way. It moves whichever way the wind takes it. The cold air and goosebumps on my legs partner up to carry me down the road where memory meets foreshadowing — how much better is it to feel something, anything, that gifts you goosebumps and a smirk, even if it has a bit of a bite.
My nail polish is a pink hue that coupled with the gold bands on each of my hands speak of a place where delicacy, passion, and commitment all meet. I run my fingertips over surfaces and draw hearts on fogged up windows. They stack up against each other like frames on a gallery wall. They tell stories of good sex, clumsy kisses, sensual moments that poured into laughs and familiarity. Of eyeshadow applied as the sun crept over the West Side highway. Of nights where the only fireflies in New York City were the white shimmery lights that outline restaurant entrances.
When I arrive, in life, at breakfast, I won’t have actually ever really arrived. There’s so much more messy life to live. I’m intentional with each step I take in the direction of a heart that’s open, a community that wants to live life in as messy of a fashion as I do, with a partner who understands my lifestyle choice.
I shimmy the gold band on my right hand up and down my finger. It’s a habit that I haven’t been able to kick yet. There are so many blanket statements on love that "haven't been able to kick yet" is applicable to. We try to weigh risk versus reward in love, like we'll ever actually come up with an answer — a bad habit. We try to weigh pros and cons of partners, like we aren’t all just forever evolving, forever changing — a bad habit. We sit at breakfast and talk about how good, or bad, or meh, the sex was. We trust each other more than we trust our partners because to trust them would require more than hearts drawn on foggy windows. It would mean letting go of bad habits, codependency, actually surrendering to both giving and receiving real love.
The messiest of dances if I’ve ever lived through one.