Everything changes, constantly, continuously, nothing is ever the same. For much of my life I longed to be solid, constant, a monument to virtues, to intellect, to sameness. I denied my fluidity, and therefore, humanity. Somewhere deep within, I yearned to be a robot, predictable, every step calculated. I wished to understand, to decipher the mystery of life, to reach conclusion, solid ground, utmost meaning of things.

I failed to see that this rigidity has grown out of fear, some of which I can explain, get to the roots of, and some – can't. I longed so to be good. To win the game of life, the game where rules are perceivable, intelligible, tangible almost. At that stage of my journey, I was frozen, not only by fear, but by prejudice. I had to follow the path of the “good”, and it must have been clear, must have been fathomable by my human mind alone.

As I suffocated myself in the corsets of ever-emerging rules, I have grown so stiff, so immobile, that the slightest touch of the unpredictable, the unknown, the soft and human, had me shiver in the agony of both bitterness and fury. What silly nonsense is soft, and spontaneous, and unapologetic for its existence?! I had to crush it. I had to will it out of existence. I had to desire hard enough so it disappears, utterly disintegrates, vanishes, for it failed to comply with my rules, my wholesome view of the world, my perfect universe. And as I silently screamed all of the undesirable “isms” out of existence, I slowly started disintegrating myself. I felt like a sandcastle, washed away slowly by the incoming waves. My rigid sand particles, solid and sturdy, gave in to the unpredictable movements of the water.

I was so afraid to swim. I was terrified into devastation. How, how can one float, how can one give in, and just “be”? This is imperceivable nonsense! You cannot just be! You have to build, to fight, to clench, to suffer, to drip blood of your human self-sacrifice onto the altar of perfection, the slate of the unmerciful Virtue; you must carve yourself anew, and emerge, a stone monolith, of goodness, and peace, and all human passions overrun, dead!

As I denied my watery descend into the vast ocean of the unknown, of human, I clasped at my sand and shrieked to be left alone. My descend was not graceful. As I shakingly clinged to my obsessive desire to control and stifle, I happened, in my frenzy, to look upon the reflection of my countenance in the water. A bewildered, utterly lost, devastated with grief, contorted in agony, face stared at me, and the delusion in the frightfully bright eyes has struck me, and from the deepest cave of my subconscious, where I buried my humanity, something stirred...

And now I float on the water of humanity on my raft made of the shuttered delusions of childhood trauma, neurodivergent sensitivity and hope for rescue. I float, my body taut with anxieties of the past, afraid to let go of the rules (leave me at least a few!..), still dizzy from the frenzy of disattachment from the shore. But as I float further and further away from that shore, I see the shapes of it dissolve, as a mirage of my pretend safety and predictability dissipates, and the emptiness of the ever-lasting ocean surrounding me enclasps me. And as I stare fretfully at the smooth expanse of the primordial ocean, as I search, in vain, for solidity of safe shores, I glimpse, occasionally at the surface of the water beneath. And what catches my eye, and holds my bedraggled brain's attention more and more are the glimmers, the reflections, the shapes that emerge and disappear before you know it. And in these shapes, more and more often, I begin to notice, the ones resembling my own.