There was once a girl who loved the world too much. This girl lived in a city and liked to wear high heeled shoes that gave her blisters. This girl often thought to herself the mantra “pain is a reminder that you’re alive”, and sometimes she said it aloud to others. She had bright eyes and small hands. This girl’s small hands liked big hands that would eat them up. This girl was extroverted and friendly, and she was aware of her extroversion and friendliness. It was apparent that this girl was at home in a crowd. This girl loved to talk, but also to listen, though sometimes this girl was easily distracted. Regardless, this girl loved people, because people are a part of the world, the world which she loved too much.
And people loved this girl back, but she wasn’t always so sure. Sometimes this girl had daydreams. In these daydreams, this girl would experience a horrible accident. She would fall from a dangerously high ledge. Her lungs would collapse. She would double over from the sharp pain in her appendix. Cold sweat would drip from her forehead while she was giving an important speech right before she collapsed at the podium before thousands of people. Or her favorite fantasy; this one was certainly dramatic. This girl – she would be crossing a busy street at night, parting ways with someone that she considered her best friend, whom she, of course, loved, and she would start to cross, kind of jogging to avoid the speeding vehicles, when her best friend, this boy, he would call out to this girl. This was a stupid thing for this boy to do. But this boy, her best friend, just had an impulse, and he wasn’t ready to say goodbye to this girl, so he did the stupid thing anyway. Without thinking, he just calls out, “Hey! Wait!”, to this girl and she stops and turns around. I mean, this girl comes to a halt, plants and pivots right in the middle of this road. This was a stupid thing for this girl to do. Despite this clear lack of judgement, this girl is usually very sensible. It is quite out of character for her to do this stupid thing. The reason this situation has to do with this boy. See, this boy, the one this girl considers her best friend, is a prime example of one of those people she isn’t sure of. This girl was absolutely certain of her devotion to this boy; this girl only knew how to love fiercely, but she just couldn’t read him. This girl didn’t want to date this boy or sleep with this boy or even kiss this boy, she just wanted to mean as much to him as he meant to her. And, boys in general, but especially this boy aren’t necessarily good at showing their appreciation. Anyway, this boy, her best friend, the one she isn’t sure of – he called out to her while she was in the middle of the dangerous road and, well, as she turned and stopped, they shared a smile. A loving, reassuring smile for half a second before this girl gets flattened by an SUV. Really, this girl fantasizes about this kind of stuff.
So anyway, then in her daydream, this girl, a pancake in the road, is rushed to the hospital. Still alive, but unconscious. Her best friend, he’s cursing himself for doing the stupid thing he did, and rides to the hospital with this girl. And they set her up in a hospital bed, dressed her in a stiff gown, and hooked her up to a bunch of technical machines that this girl could never identify. She would wake up, they thought — the doctors, the nurses. Hopefully, just give it some time. And this girl’s best friend would sit by her hospital bed, still angry with himself — tapping his left shoe and running his fingers through his hair. Not long after this girl’s parents would arrive to hold this girl’s hand, and this boy would be forced to leave because she wasn’t allowed more than two visitors. Now, because this was all just in this girl’s head, she was able to simultaneously be comatose in the hospital bed and experience herself from outside her body. This girl could watch the daytime soap operas that played on the TV in the corner, she could see the nurse check her cell phone covertly before she checked this girl’s vitals, and she could see the people. The people she loved too much; they had come to visit. Every single person this girl feared she loved in vain sat by her hospital bedside and held her hand. Or said a quick prayer. Or just came to sit with her, afraid they’d never be able to again. And this girl felt the commitment of reciprocated love. She thought it felt like interlocking fingers or the sun on her face.
I warned you it was dramatic.
This girl sometimes worried about people loving her back, but something this girl knew to be true was that it was impossible to love the world too much. This girl knew that there were things outside of her control. It was more important to love than to fuss over being loved. This girl couldn’t love too much, because love shouldn’t be quantified. She could love the world, the people, the flowers, the mountains, the cookies. But she could also love herself enough to know it doesn’t take a tragic accident to make someone love you back. This girl chose people to love for a reason. This girl was learning to trust. They didn’t have to show her and tell her that they loved her. This girl knew.