The Recipe for a Human Heart

A Customizable Recipe// Makes: 1 Heart // Time Total: 1 Lifetime // Requires: A vessel in the form of a beating, malleable heart, & various pieces of personally significant moments that stay

I know you know this moment. I know you know because you were there with me, & if, for whatever reason, it wasn’t me you were with, you’ve found yourself holding hands with (at the very least) a piece of time in that space.

This moment to which I am referring is the moment where everything was so unbelievably something that we all just knew we’d have it to live off of forever. Because it doesn’t matter if we have everything we want in the world if we don’t have this moment to awaken our souls. It’s the moment where the perfect song was playing through the summer wind pouring in from the windows of a car we all loved. It’s the moment I came into the room, & we saw the tears stemming from the same deep pain fall from each other’s eyes. It’s whatever moment that so obviously has to be captioned, “This is what I/we/you live for.”

&, oh, when I promised myself that I’d never forget the smell of the wind or the exact depth of the pain, how I wish I meant it. How I wish it were true. As deeply as I fell in love with the moment that your car drove (arguably too) fast down that winding mountain, I will forget the date that it happened. One day, I’ll be sitting on an airplane (destination: elsewhere) struggling to remember the name of that hostel we stayed in when we landed in destination: somewhere. I won’t remember the names of all the authors of all the inspiring books I’ve read or the cost of all the gas I spent to get to you or the name of the class in which we met. I’ll go ahead & give to you my sincerest of apologies; I just don’t think there’s room for all of the details of all these life-changing, heart-shaping moments to stay.

If you’re looking for the tone shift, this is it. It does (I promise) get better from here.

Pieces do stay. & I beg you, please, pay close, intimate attention to the ones that do. The pieces that stay are the pieces that make a person. It has made me. That’s how I know, for certain, that it was you on the plane next to me. I’ll hold on to the song that was playing that night- you know the one, the one that finally captured what it feels like to fall in love. I won’t forget the fact that our greatest fears unearthed themselves, & that is where that seemingly unsurvivable (yet, truthfully, survivable) pain came from. 

&, as I have found, it is in the moments that do stay that lies the recipe to a human heart.

Because, you see, I have discovered that I am a vessel in the form of a beating, malleable heart with a name. The heart keeps beating because it has met life, & asked for permission to keep beating. It sits empty until the pieces of the world that are tough enough, big enough, transformative enough fill it. Those are the moments that fill me, make me. 

Truly, I challenge you to consider that a person is the sum of the moments that they choose to carry. Try, if you might, to know a person’s story before their name because the story can stand on its own. The name is but another vessel.

It has been transformative to consider a person in this light. The stories they share, the capacity of their heart, the balance of hunger & fullness within it, tells me who they are. & that is how I know (I have to believe) that I will remember the song to which I fell in love. I will remember the names of the hearts who were there for me on that perfectly clear night. I’ll remember. I’ll remember. I’ll remember those pieces because those are the pieces that shaped & filled my own beating heart.

For best results, let the heart fill beyond capacity. // Best if used every day. (Great for celebrations, heartache, and anything in between.)


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