My cousins Shawn and Kalee first introduced me to Knox Blox. The Jello (gelatin) that you could eat with your hands. What had previously been limited to spoons, bowls and tables, was now portable. You could run with it. Squeeze it through the space your last baby tooth left behind. Take it downstairs. Outside. It was indestructible really. You could stomp on it. Throw it. Take it in the pool if you like. The only problem, it didn’t taste very good. Soon, the remains of abandoned red rubber lined the Tupperware container, and we set off to carry the impossible.
There seems to be a lot of people running around this world with hearts made of Knox Blox. No worries. No consequences. And I have envied them at times. Me, struggling with spoonful after spoonful of fragile feelings. But if given the chance, I wouldn’t change it. I want to feel and taste it all. Even this sweet pain of love and loss.
I suppose we all knew, even then, it wasn’t going to be easy. But we didn’t crave easy. We hungered for the challenges under the summer sun. We craved the skinned knees and knuckles. The sun-burned shoulders. Legs that wobbled weary at the end of the day. We wanted it all. Each morning, the screen door slamming behind us, we dared the day. Dared our hearts. To bring it all. Feel it all.
With eyebrows raised, the sun smiles in my direction. OK, I say. Heart and hands full, I reach for the door.