The Weight of the Words on her Shoulders

The Weight of the Words on her Shoulders

This morning, I came home from my studio and bootcamp to three of the most tear-jerking, kindly worded, love-filled letters I’ve ever received. Now, I don’t get this treatment every day but it is my birthday so I’ll take all this abundance with open arms. One card each from my mom, dad and a dear friend left me feeling heavy. Now I know that heavy is often thought of as a negative thing and that happiness is supposed bring with it lightness, but this heavy I’m talking about is a very good kind.

It’s not unusual to be showered with warm wishes, loving remarks and blush-worthy compliments on your birthday but there are certain words that place a whole lot of weight on your shoulders. Again, I’m talking about the good kind of heavy here.

Not sure if you follow?

Well, think of it this way—heavy for me equals grounded and safe. Sometimes when my life gets too light and airy my feet drift off the ground and it leaves me feeling untethered and vulnerable. To have those I love most reaffirm their feelings towards me in words (my love language) is the most rooting and healing gift I can imagine.

Heavy for me is also that awesomely overwhelmed feeling of gratitude for all the amazing people I have in my life. When I had my accident I got swept up in a swelling wave of this kind of grounding love and it pulled me from the undertow to the surface much faster than I could have imagined. Now, seven weeks later, I’m again at a crest of these kinds of emotions and could not be more thankful.

Years ago I go the words “a person is a person’s remedy” tattooed smack dab in the middle of my back (in Wolof script Arabic, holler Yasmeen) because I realized that people—friends, family, significant others, students, community members, everyone—are what help me rise from the rubble and rediscover the joy and laughter that already exists in abundance in my life.

Life is best lived with people who help you realize that the mere chance to love, work, play and look up at the stars each and every day is a gift for which we can all be glad.