The truth is, we want only for love. We want to be cherished, needed, protected. We want to be intimate and vulnerable, no longer alone. We long for connections, forrevelations; so we offer our hearts. We long for touch, for the tangible against our skin; so we offer our hands as a resting place for the other. We wear their presence, even in their absence.
Sometimes our heartbreak feels so dramatic, so momentous, that we seek reasons for it that are equally so. We need to make sense of the sadness we feel when the other is lost, when they so effortlessly disappear. Their absence feels overwhelming, their silence a deafening statement of rejection.
We cling to memories, old conversations, private jokes, the love that they always said they wanted – the love that we still desperately hold on to despite our unwanted return to solitude.
It is unmistakable: all I love, I love alone.
immortal. 2017 - 2020
After longing, as in death, comes a silence. It is in the surrender to this quiet that I most feel my unwanted solitude, in which I have come to understand defines my sense of mortality. My body, desperately absolute, fights death; but every year I spend alone my heart gets smaller and my fear of dying alone becomes ever-present and inescapable. This resignation wills me to seek the means to be remembered, cherished, loved after I stop breathing – to create a legacy of and from loneliness, to leave eternal evidence of my presence in my absence.
When love has been denied and refused, the only truth left to hold on to is found in our remains: they are the identifiers of our very existence and the fidelities of what we leave behind. I wantonly submit parts of myself indiscriminately to the other, any other, because I have nothing left to give. I cast remnants of my living body – immortalized in bronze, silver, and cast iron – to place around the neck of another in hopes of erasing my inevitable disappearance and thus, becoming manifestly and intimately immortal.
We are each born with a knowing pain in our soul, and this innate understanding is loneliness – a lifetime spent waiting with a desperate deep ache for someone to fill the cavity we cannot otherwise fill. When the other, it seems, is and has always been absent, the suffocation of loneliness becomes far more than a feeling – it swells into longing: an insanity of our own making. We are driven mad by a relentless pursuit for a chosen other with a bittersweet and intoxicating need that is simultaneously exciting and devastating, loving and heartbreaking.
It is an agonizing cycle: painful in the utter dissection of the self with each invitation and rejection: each necklace, each eulogy, a beautiful and grounded humiliation where I no longer recognize myself as I wholly long for someone to alleviate the paralyzing fear of dying alone. And it is this very longing, this manifold symptom of my loneliness unchecked, that I both revere and grieve for as it slowly and decidedly kills me.