Strip Me Spring
I remember the day I first met you like it was the first day of spring. I had spent months protecting myself from the coldness of life, the thick cold that gets under your skin no matter how many layers you wear. That bold, reckless way life blows in your eyes until they itch and paints red over your nose and face. Like the winter, it adds dryness to your skin, and frays your hair making you look mangled, beaten up, mostly uncomfortable. My life before you was a constant shiver, trying to combat the millions of discomforts and disappointments surrounding me. I was afraid to face my fears, that one fear in particular of never being loved. Like never taking a walk in the park because you’re afraid the brisk air will munch at your toes and the pain would be greater than the enjoyment. I used to think my pain was like the winter months, uncontrollable, unavoidable, menacing, and my enjoyment was like a heater, only temporary, artificial and sometimes not enough. But your smile was like a thousand blooming flowers, bursting out into layers of colour. Your words wrapped me in a warm blanket that was so soft against my head and heart. Your kiss made me feel like the sun had drawn nearer and put down its anchor right next to my foot. When I first met you it was like the first day of spring. My fear was inhaled by a patient God and I no longer wanted to stay indoors. You looked at me and I believed you already loved me. I was stripped of my ski jacket that stopped me from dancing graciously, of my boots that made it hard for me to jump, or celebrate life, of my sweater that hid the ugly parts of my body, of my scarf of doubt that suffocated my creativity, and my hat that disguised my intelligence. And lastly, you helped strip me of my gloves, especially the right one, that prevented me from taking someone’s hand, from trusting another. But I trust you. Here’s my hand. Let’s just keep walking along this path.