Remembering to Breathe

“We are so fragile, and our cracking bones make noise/and we are just breakable, breakable, breakable girls and boys.” – Ingrid Michaelson, Breakable

How many times have you had your heart broken? Or broken someone else’s? The metaphorical heart can withstand somethin’ fierce (imagine if our hearts were literally broken… ew).

This past weekend, I said goodbye to someone I’ve known for almost the better of 10 years. I guess that’s not to say that I won’t ever speak to this person again, but the dynamic has changed – we are literally going separate ways. I think it’s good. I think it’s scary. But when I look back on all of our history, I know its the best choice.

As sad as breaking hearts may be, I also think it gives one an opportunity for new perspective. Have you ever broken up with someone – and though crushed – taken a huge inward breath, almost as if it was like you had forgotten how? And the experience of that – the initial intake of air, the lungs filling up and the chest rising … and then, just when you feel like you might burst…the exhale – doesn’t it almost feel relieving?

Day-to-day, we wouldn’t notice breathing. It’s just something that happens. Give us a life-altering experience – something that shakes our foundations, be it one of joy or sadness – and it’s those little breaths that become critical, the focus. It’s those little breaths that keep us going.

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