2002/11/02 | NO DEFENSES

To stand naked before you in every way, to place my life before you with all its flaws, to put all that I am in your hands without reservation, trusting solely in the kindness of your heart, all takes my breath away with fear and wonder. I don’t want to move, or breathe, or raise my eyes to yours for fear I will be lacking in some way that you will find unacceptable. But then, you speak to me with your warm, gentle spirit telling me that those things which I find most embarrassing, which fill me with an overwhelming desire to cease to exist, are not any reason for you to push me away. All they mean is that I am human and they have nothing to do with me as a person. You tell me that my character is not the sum of my experiences, but is based upon who I am.

I weep with joy and gratitude to you and to G-d for your acceptance and gentle spirit. When you touch my heart, I feel new life rush into the center of my being. The dead and dying begin to heal, to become new flesh. I feel new air rush into my lungs, returning hope to my bruised and battered soul.

I cannot tell you that I love you because I am afraid to nurture even the slimmest thread of hope that you would, or could, love me in return. But I can tell you my heart is tender toward you, wanting only the best of everything to be yours, to hold you in my arms, protecting you from all possible harm or pain that may come to you, to touch your heart and take away the pain that holds you captive now. I want to do for you what you are doing for me.

Perhaps, this is how love begins. Perhaps, it has already begun.

— J. E. Clark / 2 November 2002

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