As we walk through this life, meeting the people who will become our family, our compatriots, our company along this solitary journey, we sometimes stop and wonder, why have these people chosen to walk by my side? Why do they stick with us as we ascend our mountains, ford our rivers, cross our deserts, sail upon our rocky seas? Why do they not abandon us to our fates, to die of thirst upon the dunes, or drown in the shipwrecked seas? Why me?
They see something within us that we often fail to see. A strength, a worth, a virtue. Something worth preserving. Some gift that only we can give. That light that is the self. That uniquely coloured candle, not quite like the rest, that burns, that flickers in our chest. That light that is like no other.
They stay by our side, even when separated by miles and mountains and seas. Their hearts intrinsically connected to ours, adjacent yet separated. Beat for beat, we feel their life, bound to ours, somewhere outside of time and space. Some force within us saying don’t give up hope, I believe in you. I’m there for you, no matter what you do. The strength we need, when we have none.
And as with all things, it comes full circle and one day those people, who too walk a path, will need a guiding light, a uniquely coloured flame, to show them the way through the dark. To light the darkened path that lay at their feet. To carry them when they have no strength to stand.
That’s connection, that’s friendship, that’s love.