“Your hair is getting so long.”
“I know” I say in an affirming meets tired tone.
“I love it!”
This is the essence of the many initial conversations that take place when meeting friends I haven’t spent longer than a hi with. My hair seems to be the main thing to stop people in their tracks when inquiring what has changed in my life as of late. I suppose it’s harder to notice my better erected back due to my increased self-confidence or my calloused fingers from the sharpening of my guitar skills, but my hair indeed serves decently as an indicator that I am indeed growing and changing. Whether it’s the length of my hair or the progression of my character, as long something is noticeable, it’s validated as real. And I’m not lost. Or something akin to feeling such a way.
I couldn’t swim deep enough. My ponytail had to stick out above the dark blue squiggly lines turned waves. Like a thumb that throbs, my head stuck out. Afraid of going too deep? Or afraid others will see me plugging my nose because I cannot dive eloquently for a woman of my stature? Even at twilight, I know anyone could catch me, nose in hand, if they wanted to.
I couldn’t make you believe I could swim deep enough. Towards the darker black that was a stagnate bottom. As we’d unknowingly race, my mind would pace the ways I could persuade anyone into believing I made it back so swiftly because simply, I was a good swimmer (even with all the long hair). If I could swim as good as I lie, the black would be no threat, the deep my ebbing enemy. And you, a feeble competitor. You–heartache, distance, change, a loser. Me–heart broken, consistently yearning for others and routine-ridden, a winner.
I hate this ponytail, but it makes you search elsewhere for some shimmery fleck of impressive. And I wear it also to see the sea better, you see? The salt can burn, but at least the brown tendrils do not get in anyone’s way. In my way; I seem to get in my way often. On the way down, a glance is made at the girl descending delightfully. “She’s different” they all whisper in their heads.
I need to grasp the person I was a few moments ago and the person I will be in moments to come. One I find, meant for the ethereal gleam, beside her, behind her and above her. Some call it the moon, I call Spirit. The other, a beguiling blunder disguised and maneuvered by handsome temptation, or a coy enchantress. It’s hard to think under water, but I can see both are fragile and fortunate and relevant. And so I’m aware of the humanness and abundance that surrounds me. And also aware, maybe my improvement do not need to be seen, just claimed.
I don’t swim deep enough and I hate this ponytail, but I trace the steps before me and meander forward, slowly but more importantly, surely. My breath become the tokens that create ripples towards you, towards better. My body the shore that keeps order and direction. I can’t swim deep enough, but found when necessary the deep surely finds me. And for a breathe’s moment, I’m not lost.