I once felt like a store-bought mannequin. Standing emotionless inside the world’s window I felt that I was only worth that which was added: an olive green baseball cap today, tomorrow a blue tailored shirt with cuff links. What was underneath was unimportant, only what was added matted. So long I lived this was that I was tired of being awake, tired of opening my eyes to nothingness, tired of looking into the mirror searching my eyes for a spark of life. I believed it was futile to live.
Then one day, I awakened to that splashed of ocean water at my feet. Lying on a white sand beach staring at the bright blue sky I noticed that all around me were coconut trees. These trees leaned toward the sea, stretching across the white sand beach, reaching with all their might and it seemed so futile to me. I would walk for hours in either direction and not see a soul. For days and days I would walk these beaches, examining the trash that floated to shore: a fishing float from Philippines, bottles from Japan, myself from America. And as the days passed by the only thing that reminded me of other humans was a single tree I found. On this tree was trash, or what I thought was trash from afar. The tree had a half dozen soles (of shoes) nailed to itself, each one with a story to tell, and many in foreign languages. One sole was from Beth Johansson from Seattle Washington, she wrote “Here I leave my sole to rest, looking out at this view. I hope to return one day, but this is what little I have left to do. So here I leave my soul to rest, in hopes that it will never leave.”
Here, hours away from any human life, looking out at Wallace Island is where I found the essences to life this futile life; where I felt connected to someone I’ve never met, by an experience shared by few. What I believe is this: life isn’t about the beginning and the end, but the beauty of what’s in between, the effort, the passion. What is life but a series of events leading to an unknown goal, so enjoy it because that beauty is all we have.
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