By Any Other Name

BY: JOHNATHAN JENA

3rd of August,

In any kind of relationship, the last place we hope to fall is where enough is not the same as it was before.  But what if enough is not what you gave in return?  What if enough leaves you feeling passed over, like a sparrow in the rain?  What if enough becomes enough?

2 weeks ago, I recorded my EP with my band, Waking Gray.  Simply put, I had the time of my life.  Never before have I felt so certain, so sure.  When I was in the studio with my band, with my friends who had become my family, I knew that if there was anything I did with my life, anything I really fought for, it would be this.  

I was staying for the duration of recording with Chris, our bassist and Sergio, our lead guitarist at Chris’ house.  The second night of recording, we were inevitably talking about the band and about the future we had moving forward.  The conversation evolved as Sergio told us some of some of his life story.  He told us of people he had lost and a time when he was stabbed and left for dead by his (at the time) girlfriend’s alcoholic father.  He was bleeding and alone.  It was a kind of loneliness most of us have trouble imagining.  A loneliness so consuming that it forces you to realize that there are times when there is really no one there for you; times when the only one willing your eyes from a permanent sleep are your own.   

He told us of how in the times when all else went away, he held only one thing as a constant:  

Music.

In his most hollow of times, his ability to create reminded him that there are places past the walls we build around ourselves; past the pain we encase ourselves in either by circumstance or by choice.  

“You have to want this more then anything, more than safety, more than breathing”, he said to us.

I thought about my life, and about how much I try to steer things into place.  How I sometimes preach self-efficacy and completeness at the same time that I put those I care for on pedestals.   I thought about the hollowness that overcomes me every once in a blue moon; about how I let the fact that in life I have never had a heart to beat in tandem with mine define me.  I thought about how no matter how I try to explain it away, the highest standard I often hold for myself relies upon the affirmation of others, more about what I could give them and less about what I could give myself.

It sunk in over the next few weeks, the fact that there is so much beauty in the world, so much, that it can be overwhelming.  I tried to hold onto it and force it into place, but love is not like that, nor is life.  There is a balance to be made, and often to truly appreciate and experience the beauty we share in, we must allow it to flow through us like water.  

…Because if I am honest, I have never loved something in this world more than my very desire to love and be loved.

It is difficult sometimes to shed the skin of my mistakes and carry on, and I am not perfect, but I am growing.  Every time I break, I try to fill in the cracks with gold.  

It has now been over 3 weeks since that night and I have since held my head high.

I know that before I can fight for what I love, I must consider myself worth fighting for.  

And though along the way, I may fall.

Yes, I will fall—

I will stand back up.  

Because I am enough for me and that makes all the difference.