“Huge crowd gathers to watch ISIS throw gay man off building”

Preface: There are so many awful stories in the news, and to try to comprehend, to fathom what I see and hear, to humanize the murders, the tortures, the hatred, I am beginning a series where I put myself in the story and try to imagine what the person was going through. The result of that is here. This is not supposed to be what this man felt, but rather a rendition of what I would feel were I in the same situation.

It was just a kiss.
A heart-racing, eye-widening, soul-splitting kiss, but just a kiss all the same.
I should have known better.
I don’t know how they found out.
Nothing is safe.
Here I am, the consequence of one moment of weakness.
A message of hatred.
God, why?
The rope burns on my wrist and the heat scalding my skin are no match for my mind.
They are leading me to my death.
I am a good man. I give, I help, I love.
I love.
They wish to destroy me.
They will destroy me.
I think I’m on the roof now.
They’re talking all around me, but I can’t make out the words.
I am going to die for my love.
I do not want this, it is no heroic gesture – no one will stop them.
A sharp command, they grab my arm.
I am on the edge.
They share their message.
I’m overcome with the urge to jump right there, to shatter their vision of how this should go, but the self-preservation wins out, I hold onto life for just a bit more.
I know it is coming before I feel it.
My body is flailing through the air.
I am reminded of the steep drop of my favorite roller coaster.
His face flashes before my eyes,
disappearing in flames upon impact.
No one will ever know my fear, my pain, my promise.
No one will ever know me.

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“Huge crowd gathers to watch ISIS throw gay man off building”

Close your eyes.

Blue skies are my lullabies.
Rainbows the silver lining in my thunderstorm world.
Lightning-shattered dreaming.
Tell me I’ll wake up.
Tell me it’s not real.
Tell me my fragility is a misconception, a slip of perception, I’ve no imperfection, no flaw.
Lie to me, so simply, do it gracefully, mercy mercy me.
Words reaching out to some understanding, hidden away by the secrecy of a webpage, what do I want to say?
God, I’m human.
The blood running through my veins is contained only by skin, the heart pumping it will stop when it is destined, the thoughts in my mind will come and go until I am no more.
Tell me that’s not scary.
Give me reason to believe that the entirety of existence is beautiful. It is. I know it is.
But convince me. I want to know that I’m living. I want to know that there’s some method to madness, some resolution to the confusion.
I’m not seeking an end, but a solution. I don’t want to quit, but a new beginning. I want to know.
How many people are feeling lonely tonight? How many are contemplating their life? How many are trying to find the will to live? Trying to find someone to help them, some reason to continue…the things you’d think are rare aren’t so rare after all.
How many are suffering? How many crying? How many need someone like me, like you? Such a simple action, just to reach out and say don’t worry. I’m a stranger, but I know what you’re feeling. We’re not all that different, really. All need to feel important, to feel wanted and loved and worthy. We all have our doubts and our fears, we’re all imperfect. We’re going to be okay though, you know? I’ll tell you.
There are better days coming for us. Days that hold sunshine and smiles. Days where we don’t doubt life, or fear death, or wonder how we can hurt so many and be hurt by so many. I know you’re feeling blue, but breathe. I know you’re feeling lost, but believe. Fight yourself, fight your enemies, fight your friends, fight the world, do what you can with what you have. You can live. You can be. You can aspire and seek and dream.
And you can cry. You can hurt. You can feel how you feel, because that’s what’s real. But don’t let that define you. Know who you are and who you want to be. Try to understand why you do what you do and feel how you feel. Try to better yourself. Try to help others. Try to let them see that it’s okay. It’s okay to be afraid. To feel low and wretched and wrong. You’re entitled. I’m entitled. We’re entitled. But don’t forget that you’re better than that. We’re better than our weakness. We’re better than our flaws. We’re better than we are. Keep improving. Let yourself cry, but don’t forget to smile. Lash out, but always apologize. Don’t lose sight of what matters in life. Take a step back. Relax. We’re gonna be okay. I promise you, there’s some good in every bad and some bad in every good. You just have to be able to ignore it during good times, and maximize it in bad. And it’s not easy. It’s a lifelong practice, and you still won’t get it right. But we aren’t supposed to get everything right. We’re human, you and I. We’re supposed to mess up. It’ll suck. It’ll hurt. Yourself and others. But, it’ll pass. It always passes.
So the nightmares are waking me from sleep, and I can’t find a way to convince my eyes to close.
I’m shaking and alone in the darkest way and time, I’m not even sure that I can see my own light.
But, some nights you can’t see the stars, or the moon. They’re there. Always and forever, shining clearly somewhere, for someone else to see.
I’ll be okay. You’ll be okay.
Convince me that the world is going to keep on turning, that the gravity is going to keep my feet on the ground, that the sun will rise and set and remind me that there are things bigger than myself or you or anyone else in play. Call it chance or circumstance, call it God or science or something undecided. There’s no arguing.
We aren’t the only thing going on this planet. There’s more than our existence. There’s more than our lives.
So, we can get downhearted and we can feel what we feel. But we need to remember that there’s more than us. There’s more than me and you. And that’s why we’re going to be okay. Because when push comes to shove, we don’t matter all that much anyway.

Close your eyes.

Don’t ask what the meaning of life is. Define it yourself.

Life’s crazy, huh?

I’ve been really swept up in the whole living thing. My reflective self has sort of lost the time to reflect.

We’re all on our way to somewhere. Somewhere big, somewhere small, an end of the road destination. We’re all headed to the grave, the afterlife, the last stop. But that’s not at all what matters, is it? What matters is what we do, who we are, where we go on the way there.

We have some power in our lives. We have the opportunity to make dreams come true. We have choices and decisions. We have life sketched into the palm of our hand, malleable as the bending and grasping and turning and shaping of the lines that form our story.

I live for the intangible. I like to know those things about people that I can’t see in their actions, on their faces. I like to know what makes someone do what they do, be who they are. I like to know the core of an individual, what makes them tick. This is something to me. This is my level. This is where I want to know the people in my life.

I’m sure by this point, you’re asking what in the world I’m trying to get at. The fact of the matter is, I don’t know. I’m overcome with something bigger. Something more than myself and more than life. Opportunity, possibility, ingenuity, dedication, inspiration, believing in achieving and desiring to be something more than a body on this earth.

We are all searching for something. We live in the process of this need for fulfillment in our life. I don’t know a lot. But I feel it. I cannot always translate it. But I do, in some sense, understand it. You do too. I know you feel these things in your life that you can’t quite find a word for. I know we all do.

Maybe you can make about as much sense of this as I can. And trust me, that’s not much. But I guess it’s something worth getting out there. I’ll try to work on it, but like I said…my reflection time is limited these days.

Hope you are all having a great life. You only get one.

Don’t ask what the meaning of life is. Define it yourself.