1. The reliability I can place on my tongue to speak. Or to sing; to scoop these words, these sounds out of my mouth, like black-raspberry ice cream, into a ready bowl; willingly waiting for what I have to say. Because someone told me my voice matters and that there are words to be said, for myself and those who can’t.
2. The luck of being there; right place, right time, when you walked in, and regrettably out, of my life’s newly spray-painted doors. They were colored grey. And it was you, and those I can count on my fingers on one hand, that added luminous streaks of color to my painfully mundane canvas. Just because you’re gone, doesn’t mean you took the splashes of lime green and Dark Sea with you.
3. The rain, because, bitch, my whole life has been clouded with drought. Dry. Covered in a sea full of sand and I have stood, for what must be eternity by now, in empty riverbeds. Without a drop of water or something undeniably unfeigned with the ability to turn the dizzy illusion of emotions into something real. The rain, because even a desert can feel as numb as Novocain.
4. Being able to feel––even if a drizzle turns into flood and you fear you may sink below the waves again; it’s that fear that keeps you from drowning. Feeling your heart race or your lips curve upward into a smile that you didn’t have to think about forcing onto your face. Feeling amazed at the goddamn aptitude to feel anything. Even when you’re certain you’re about to break.
5. Watching old dogs get adopted. Dogs older than that time they decided Pluto was no longer a planet, but these dogs only remember the time someone decided they no longer had a place to be. Because the best part isn’t being absolutely stable; it’s being able to feel the difference between instability and the sensation of being undefeated.
6. It’s the music, the soundtrack or words and voices mixing with the notes written for every shitty or magnificent moment that comes with actually living and yes, it’s the hardest part, because life’s an uphill battle, like walking up a stegosaurus’s razor-edged back, and yes, it’s full of sighs and screams and pain but please hold on long enough to see that the best part isn’t the end because it’s over, it’s the part where you’re alive; where you get the chance to live.