How easy it is to think that when social media is perused, when posts or comments are read, or photos gazed at with amusement, that I am actually looking into the life of that person—that I am ultimately sharing in it. How easy it is to approach the computer screen as an open window to the vibrancy of community and the world around.
It may be a window, but it does not open without being broken. Air does not flow through it to refresh my suffocating lungs, to thus calm my aching heart. Sunlight does not pass through to warm my skin, to thus brighten hope with ambition.
Is it really even a window?
Or is it a façade, a mesmerizing illusion that leads to entrapment and eventual dehydration? Slowly, illusive, it wraps its callousness around the soul like a cocoon. For it is a kind of organism. Not all bad, but, if relied upon, transforming love to a faint reflection that no longer belongs to a body readily embraced in human tenderness.
Whole love cannot be experienced through a glass. But nor is it merely the air or sun beyond. It is that tangible, and therefore risky and often painful, thing we call being. Moving. Changing. Journeying through it, I cannot help but be touched—transformed into someone better or worse, more sacrificial or more selfish. Emptying to be filled with meaning, or absorbing to inevitably be drained.
Life is desperate risk. It takes courage beyond what most acknowledge. Life is not a reflection or a mirage. It is present. It is presence.
May each of us no longer be satisfied with mere window views. Though it will demand the sweat of effort, may we each or together break through the walls and enter the forgotten beauty of human frailty, layering our bodies with the dust of countless adventures.