Thursday, March 5, 2009

Glass

Have you ever been in love? Horrible isn't it? It makes you so vulnerable. It opens your chest and it opens up your heart and it means that someone can get inside you and mess you up. You build up all these defenses, you build up a whole suit of armor, so that nothing can hurt you, then one stupid person, no different from any other stupid person, wanders into your stupid life...You give them a piece of you. They didn't ask for it. They did something dumb one day, like kiss you or smile at you, and then your life isn't your own anymore. Love takes hostages. It gets inside you. It eats you out and leaves you crying in the darkness, so simple a phrase like 'maybe we should be just friends' turns into a glass splinter working its way into your heart. It hurts. Not just in the imagination. Not just in the mind. It's a soul-hurt, a real gets-inside-you-and-rips-you-apart pain. I hate love.” ~Neil Gaiman

He could see daylight ahead in the distance, he was almost home free. His heart raced, only so much faster than his pursuers. Not daring to look over his shoulder, he pulled on all his reserves to make the last sprint.

Seconds later, my cousin lay bloody and broken among the shards of glass, all that was left of the sliding door. He never saw it coming as he smashed through on his way out of the house, during a game of tag.

Love can be like that, sneak up on you when you least expect it and then leave you broken and bloody. Long after the shards of glass have been picked up and removed, there is that sliver still stuck in you, making it's way from your hands to your head, and ultimately to your heart. That sliver cuts like a surgeons knife though nerve ending, separating you from feeling to stop the pain. Making you wary of love and what it has to offer.

I have been there. After high school, I found my heart ripped out, stepped on and spray painted black. I think the spray paint was just for spite, lol. I wandered for years, feeling little, promising myself I would never give myself away again. It was not worth it. I could get what I wanted and then slip away like a thief in the night, leaving the pain for someone else to deal with.

Through those three years, as much as I was protecting my heart, it was filled with unmet longings. I was searching for something to make me whole again, something to make me feel again. I tried to find that "missing piece" in many ways, but left with bloated tongue, I thirsted still. Then I met me wife. And then I found God again.

It's alright to be afraid, David, because this part won't be like a comic book. Real life doesn't fit into little boxes that were drawn for it. ~Mr. Glass (Unbreakable)


Life does not fit into neat little boxes, and neither will your heart. What once started as protection, becomes the parasite, sucking the life out of your heart. We have to remove the splinter of glass and stop listening to the lies it tells. If you love again, will it hurt? Yes, it does sometimes. I have found though, that love is greater than a few shards of broken glass.

28 comments:

Ronda Laveen said...

All of this is so true and truly wonderful...poignant. Yes, sometimes you have to walk across coals to get to the other side, but it is sooo worth it. Neil Gaiman has been one of my favorites for years. Great job with the glass!

Candie Bracci said...

Love your take on the theme and love that sentence of Neil Gaiman,I've just read it not a long time ago.

Leah said...

A very good metaphor.

And you quote two things I love--Neil Gaiman, and "Unbreakable."

Thank you!

subtorp77 said...

"Unbreakable" is how I would define this past week but for different reasons. And I prayed the glass shards were removed. Prayer can work wonders.

Daniel said...

It seems like you wrote this with me in mind. My name is woven tightly into your words. This is the way it is with all good advice and wise, choice words. Blessings my friend.

mouse (aka kimy) said...

brilliant...

I don't know how I have existed without knowing the name neil gaiman (of course this just shows that I don't pay attention always to advertisements since there's the new movie coraline), and today two mentions - the first in a comment on the mouse of someone asking about the vid I posted and now here on waystation...curious mouse that I am just googled him and WOW - good thing I'm going to the library in a little while....must check out some of his books....

and then there's the mouse circus...

Brian Miller said...

subtorp...so true...will pray for you as well.

mouse...have fun exploring at the library. have read a few of his. definitely thought provoking.

fun theme this week. can not wait for next week.

Dakota Bear said...

Brian-thank you for this take on the theme. It is most profound.

Colette Amelia said...

Brian this was wonderful...got to be careful removing the sliver though could cut the fingers pulling it out...maybe thats why it takes so long to get over it all, the fear of the splinter coming out?

Squirrel said...

Enoy Neil Gaiman, but I had not seen this quote before.

black spiteful spray painting-- oh boy that is well put ... well we've all had some sprayed on us.

Dopey1 said...

Thanks for this one!

willow said...

Touching glassy post, Brian

Baino said...

I feel a little like glass at the moment. Transparent and breakable . . . Fragile and not very viscous but I know that everything's slowly sliding to the bottom and the older I get, I have much less clarity than I did in my youth. Yes, I'm rather like an Elizabethan window pane that's past it's prime and needing a little refurbishment and renewal. A little spit, polish and restoration.

I remember having tea in a little Tea Shoppe in Winchester many years ago, one of those low ceiling Elizabethan places with beautiful blackened beams and a rammed earth floor. The door frames were so small, we virtually had to duck to walk through the door into a dimly lit tea room with neat little gingham layed tables and a roaring open fire. The windows were a conglomeration of tiny squares of thick glass with a circular centre, a symptom of being 'blown' rather than moulded or rolled. I was amazed that restorers were having a problem replacing and repairing these little window panes because . . .since glass is a liquid . . .over the hundreds of years, they'd thickened at the bottom and been rendered fragile and thin at the top. Hard to imagine something so rigid and versatile is actually moving all the time.

I like glass . . I can't be trusted with it. I drop it, I knock it against the flickmixer when I'm washing up, it slips from my hands without any provocation. It flies off the side table with the slightest flick of the finger and shatters into a thousand pieces like a broken windscreen. I find it on the floor days later when I run round with the vacuum cleaner. I'm so unreliable and predictable with particularly Champagne glasses that I receive at least a dozen every Birthday and/or Christmas to replenish the ones which have become shattered casualties throughout the year. I'm a standing joke when it comes to breaking drinking glasses. the term "Taxi" is frequently yelled at me as glasses tumble on a weekly basis through my apparent clumsiness. Hot tip? Never buy me glassware . . .ooops . . too late! I have no more than 8 matching glasses and yep, they're Red Wine glasses (of course I drink white!) or blasted Stuart Crystal sherry glasses . . who on earth drinks Sherry! But again,they're pretty and sparkly and belonged to people I cared about.

I cringe when anyone gives me anything made out of glass. Like the little Venetian glass bowl with a lid that my mother bought from well. .Venice. The Cavan Crystal photo frame that was a gift from my Padwan's family and is still waiting for an appropriate photograph. My Grandma's cake tray that comes out once in a blue moon at birthdays, high days and holidays. Also her jug that was so often placed on the table filled with Dandelion and Burdock. I love the vase that my daughter bought me for Christmas to replace . .you guessed it, the one I smashed just before. It's perfect for my favourite flowers - Lillies.

Then I have a lot of useless glass. Waterford crystal decanters that I simply can't part with because they're heirlooms, the crystal Bell that sat on my Nana's mantle and a delightful Chinese perfume bottle that I salvaged from my Aunt's belongings after she died whilst everyone else deemed her possessions rubbish and couldn't wait to get rid of her stuff. I love the mirror that my mother in law bought me as a housewarming present because 'everyone likes to make sure they're just so before they leave the house' so it hangs by the front door.

So whilst Glass and I have a chequered history and I would never recommend ever buying or giving me good quality glass (It just ends up in the cupboard to be admired and never touched). It has a quality about it that I appreciate. I can't drink out of a paper cup and spectacles with plastic lenses just don't seem right. Nothing catches the light late in the afternoon as a finely cut crystal. I even like the sound of glass when you dampen the rim and gently smooth your finger around it in a circle to make it sing.

runmotman said...

Deep; i think almost everyone can take some of this as their own...

Dot-Com said...

That is so true about love. Unfortunately, a broken heart is as difficult to piece together as a broken piece of glass. Mine's still in bits from my last break-up :-(

mouse (aka kimy) said...

I came home with both by him and a book called hanging out with the dream king where various collaborators talk about working with him....what a creative individual....

Mrsupole said...

Was a great post. Just a great post.

Thank you sooooo much.

Glass splinters in the heart. Very nice way that everything was written.

Evening Light Writer said...

Your post really sums up how I feel right now. I'm reeling from a broken heart and trying to find my bearing again. This really touched me. Your writing is gentle and authentic, sincere.

Megan said...

This was very moving, thank you Brian. Excellent post.

Cuppa Jo said...

A great post and very thought provoking. Thank you.

BooksandacupofCoffee.... said...

Hi! Brian Miller,
I agree wholeheartedly, with the other Thursday Theme members, what a very interesting and touching
post about heartbreak, trust, pain and learning what is important in the end...Love.
Unfortunately, I'am not familiar with writer
Neil Gaiman and I wasn't familiar with the word "transom," but thanks to you and subtorp77,
I learned the definition of a new word and I also learned the name of a new author to add to my book list.
Thank, you both!
Deedee aka Dcd

Marianna said...

Hey Brian!

Sorry for the late comment...my internet connection had problems yesterday :-(

I LOVE the way you write. thank you on a wonderful and fun to read post!

Take care
peace and love
xoxo

Alicia said...

This gives so much more meaning to I Corinthians 13, which explains fully that the greatest of the 3 things we hold on to the most (faith, hope, and love) is love. Love conquers all! Even the fear of the unknown, failure, and even being vulnerable. And oh so much more.

Brian Miller said...

thanks for all the great comments! sorry i was off the grid for the last 24 hours. It is amazing how each of our stories share similar moments. In that we know we are not alone. we also don't have to remove the sliver in isolation or be ashamed, because we have all been there. Thanks for being real!

Auntie, aka cagny said...

Brian,
We've all been down that road.
Thanks for sharing.

dw said...

Great post! Thanks for it.

tony said...

Beautiful Post Sir! Yes I identify with what you say 100%
When you drop a glass.It shatters on the ground.You spend an hour searching for a thousand tiny shards...........even then, the worry remains that you missed a stray one....and its waiting to get you the next time you walk barefooted into the room........!

Brian Miller said...

and my feet will find it...just like the legos from from someone's post last week. thanks tony.