I know better than to learn about other people.
The details, the little things, the tiny components that make up who they are.
Someone’s tattoos all being Celtic in theme.
Someone singing one of my favorite styles of music in their youth.
Someone’s monthly blood donations… always at the children’s hospital, never anywhere else.
Someone’s secret passion for a particular author.
Someone finding love and peace and faith after most of a lifetime of hell.
Someone’s joy in their child nestling to sleep in their arms.
Someone’s delight in finding an unknown connection with a stranger who becomes a new friend.
Components, colored pieces that make up the mosaics of people. These little things are what fascinate me about people; I love them. And in turn, I love the people with them. It becomes overwhelming, not because it’s hard to love so many, but because of the heartbreak that inevitably happens. People leave, they die, they withdraw, they vanish with or without warning or reason.
If I seem cold sometimes, uninterested in others, it’s not because I truly am uninterested. It’s because I am passionately interested, and I know that anything and everything I learn I will love, and I will love everyone — friends, lovers, acquaintances, neighbors, strangers buying milk in the store at 2:30 in the afternoon with three children in tow and an absentminded kiss or caress for each of them, folk holding a door in the rain for someone they’ve never met before and will never meet again.
I cannot handle my heart being broken again. If I notice you, no matter who you are, I will learn about you, and I will love you, and I know that you will break my heart. So I deliberately blind myself, I don’t look, to try to save what I can of myself. I try not to look, so that my heart doesn’t shatter again into the pieces that make up the mosaics of everyone I have ever learned of in all my years.