i've always wondered why after people pass, they stop being a person and start being a body. i wonder if nurses realize they once ran to school to avoid being late, that they curled up on their sofas with comfort food to watch their favourite films. i wonder what'll be said at the undertaker's funeral. maybe, "it's so ironic. they lived for the dead." i wonder why it's okay to grieve for a person who, to the plot-maker, wasn't really a person at all. just a couple thousand dollars for a stone that they may not even see.
one of the reasons i decided not to die is because i am not a hole in the ground expecting to be filled. i'm not a statistic or a dollar sign. i'm not a percentage or a transcript, i am not the overdrawn back account that needs to be filled by the end of the month. i am the way you lift your hands off piano keys and the feeling of excitement when your birthday rolls around. i am why you prefer white chocolate over dark. i am the old ticket stubs, i am the portraits of who you once were. i am the reflection, and i am the comparison of yesterday versus now.
we are often asked why a lightbulb shines when all it'll come to do is burnout. we ask ourselves what the point of living is if one day our minds will short circuit and disintegrate. the left side of your brain calculates the possibility of your doing something world-changing. the right part of you immediately looks at the person you love. the left side of your brain is how you feel when you see them destroying the space between. the right side is why you feel. we favour our body parts by how attractive they look to us. (but i cannot play the piano with only my right hand.) we have to use the entirety of ourselves to love ourselves, but sometimes one half more than the other.
for example, left is how you comprehend a problem on an exam. right is how you feel when you find out you got it wrong. i got a 1530 on my SATs. the school system has decided my worth by a set of questions that i may never use in my life. the public school system has decided i am a percentage of human quality because i choose to learn in my bedroom. the left side of me is how i read a word. the right side deciphers what it means to me. one size doesn't really fit all and different sections of a test at any given time doesn't exactly count as diversity. i am not a shell in a grey hoodie made to absorb a formula. i am technicolour, but only for the people that choose to see.
the left side of you says "hello, my name has been duplicated a million times over."
the right side of you demonstrates how you are different from the rest.
hello, my name is jocelyn. i am the calculations of minutes, hours, seconds it will take to feel pretty again. i am the recollections of regret when i lay in your bed, unable to wrap my torso into your chest and say "wait. stop. please. i need you, right now." i am not a number on a census chart. i am the moment you realize that in one second, all of this will become a memory. and i am the decision to remember or to forget.
i wrote this about me, but it's for the anon who is unsure of who they are. let me assure you, sweetheart,
even if we were the sum total of what others see, i would still think you beautiful.