She's History

“She’s history.”

“That’s old news.”

“Out with the old, in with the new.”

These are all phrases westerners use to describe things being, for all intents and purposes, “over.”

But are things really over or are they renewed or reshaped or…

I was thinking through these phrases, and then about how history is taught to us. Usually, in American textbooks at least, the timeline is a common image showing us the “progression of mankind” and the “sophistication of thought.” These ideologies mix in our brains like a cocktail and pour out language that suggests we’ve adopted and therefore know to be true, that things happen in successive linear progression.

But if that’s the case, why do we have seasons? Why do we have times of joy, times of sorrow, times of excitement, back to sorrow…you get the picture.

The funniest thing is, no part of life reflects that time is occurring on an ever “bettering” (somehow) scale. Life reflects a back and forth motion, and ebb and flow, some sprints that land you back at the starting line, some dirt under your nails from a climb that turned out to be a descent.

That “somehow” is where I think we can find commonalities among human beings. No matter what culture you live in or how you’ve been taught, there are always those “somehow” moments:

“and then somehow we were married”

“and then somehow I was homeless”

“and then somehow they were all grown up”

“and then somehow she was gone”

It’s these cycles of good, bad, sorrow, joy, pain, euphoria that define the human experience. By living in the “somehow”, we can tap into the heartbeat of humanity. No linear movements, no circular patterns – just the ever changing, ever shaping soulful dance we get to share together during the gentle, quick breeze that is our time on earth.

Pen Pals

I have a pen pal and her name is Analyse.

She sends me the most amazing water colored and sketched post cards that she makes herself.

I love flipping over her art and taking in what she's observed or done lately: dancing at festivals, skateboarding to work in San Francisco, her latest poetry obsession. 

Something I realized while writing to her and reading her letters: we have a very specific way of speaking (our generation) that is very nonchalant, yet we all understand what each other are talking about. 

They say the best window for language acquisition ends during childhood, but isn’t it interesting that we can keep morphing and learning new niches of language, even if it’s part of our native language?

Even though we usually speak in a very certain way because of our circumstances, we are able to shift for whatever situation we're in because we sense that it’s necessary. 

Isn’t it strange? That internal notion we have to shift gears when we’re in different spaces?

I want to make sure that my language is understood by whomever I’m talking to. Whether it means slowing it down, shifting the topic, or just not speaking at all.

It reminds me that the world doesn’t revolve around me. It reminds me that there are so many other beautiful ways of life in the world. It reminds me to admire and respect others simply by paying attention to the words they choose to use.