“Ghod I hate being an elf! Bloody frolicking with pixies, perverted ogres, even the stupid wine is just dreamberry juice! I wish I was in Kentucky.”
I’m not sure where the little undergound magazine got that clip. It’s cute. It has a little elf princess sitting in her chair, thinking the above thoughts. And it makes me wonder, what with the “I Love Being Human” war of recent days and other sentiment, that maybe going around hating your body is merely relative.
I can only take example from my personal existence, though. I can only contemplate all the people who swear up and down that I’m not only pretty, I’m downright sexy. Well, I have a bit of trouble believing it, size 16 that I am (even if Marilyn Monroe was the same size) and I spend a lot of time hating my hips and thighs. But if I stopped to listen to so-and-so, perhaps I’d fall in love with them instead?
I love my hair. I love it so much that I spend a great deal of time trying to make it look like the hair from my first body. So I guess I don’t love my hair so much, after all. I love that other head of hair, those other eyes, that other slender waist–and my personal subjectiveness puts myself through hell because I don’t have them. I diet, and I walk and I sweat and I hate myself. I stand, looking in the mirror, saying to myself, “Gawds, how ugly I am!” And you could be friggin’ Jesus Christ on your knees, begging to kiss my pinky toe because of my supposed beauty, and I’d never believe you.
But, during the times when I’m full of light and energy, or interested in horses or any of a number of things that make me forget that I’m not, currently, in my first wee body–those are the times I love life. Those are the times my subjectiveness forgets to center on how ugly I am, and they center on how interesting the task at hand is. When I’m dancing, or painting or even just having an in-depth conversation with a friend are the times I feel truly beautiful. And I believe that’s because I’m not looking inside anymore. Those are the times I’m bothering to live.
For is it not the living that appeals to most? A living flower, a living baby, even the weeds living in the cracks on the sidewalk. They’re green, they’re vibrant, they practically glow with life force, and this makes them beautiful to the average person. Dried flowers are nice, but sought after most when they’re dried to contain the color they bore when still growing. Stuffed animals, dead as they are, are still an item when fashioned to look alive. A mulch pile is nice, too, but it also helps to give life to the new things in the garden. When you take a life, you can only take that thing because it’s there. You cannot slay something that is already dead.
So, perhaps it?s not the bodies, or the gifts we may have lost or gained, or the color of our eyes that makes us who we are. It’s how we look at things. I could go around bemoaning the loss of my wings, but why should I? Who’s to say I won’t get another, more fabulous pair later? And right now, why can’t I just enjoy what I do have? It is loss that helps to truly appreciate what we have been able to keep through the years. So I lost my wings. Okay. But I remember them, and so I treasure that memory as precious. I still can walk, and draw on good days when my hands don?t hurt, and think coherent thoughts. In other words, I’m not crippled. I’ve just changed.
And, much as I hate to admit it, change is growth. Coming to this planet, whether by accident or by force, may be just the best thing that ever happened to you. Oh, sure, you could view it as the worst thing in the multiverse and something you wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. However, viewing it as a learning experience may be more productive. I remember every lash on my back, and the feeling of the cat-o’nine-tails hitting my broken wing joints. This may have been one of the most traumatic experiences anyone could ever hope to face, but I think it was also one of the best things I could have known. I know pain. I not only know pain, but I know consequence, and what it is to be strong enough to stand up for what you believe in. And maybe I’ll never do it again, maybe I’ll never have the chance, but should that day ever come I pray to anything listening that I would have the strength to do so. And this knowing what may be ahead. And it seems sweeter that way.
My conclusion in this hour is that life makes things beautiful, even the twisted things like warthogs and platypi. And knowing how precious these moments we have, both good and bad, seems to make my world all the sweeter. Am I still glad to be human? In this moment, more than ever. There’s something else about humans people tend to overlook; their capacity for imagination. Their high vibrancy. Their naivete. Their passion. These elements are essential for good adventure.
Oh, and adventure is the most beautiful state of being there is.