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“Being at ease with not knowing is crucial for answers to come to you.” —Eckhart Tolle

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I listened to everything being said, and yet, it registered as if it were happening to someone else. The size of the tumor was being described, and the grade. I suddenly became privy to things like proliferation index and types of receptors as indicators for treatment. I held the phone between my head and shoulder, which I have never been very good at, and began typing into my computer. I titled the page breast cancer and put words and actions to the page I had no interest in ever impressing upon my body.

“Time is the soul of this world.” —Pythagoris

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The house is finally still after a whirlwind of overlapping encounters with winter’s harshest microbes and all that is intrinsic to the human condition. Some of it is beautiful and golden, like a painted sunrise. Some of it throbs and pulls at the heart like punch in the jaw. All of it threads together the remarkable narrative of a strange and sometimes-conscious species.

“Our first teacher is our own heart.”—Cheyenne Proverb

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Each time I see them I think about the salt air and seaweed perfume, the sitting on the edge of a boat at dawn and dusk taking in the vast Maine sky. I imagine their weathered hands and wonder if our spines are made from the same fibers—mine seeming somehow not as sturdy despite my attempts at affirming it otherwise.