by Laesa Faith Kim
- hold (someone) closely in one’s arms, especially as a sign of affection.
- accept or support (a belief, theory, or change) willingly and enthusiastically
The day before the world shut down I embraced with great delight, all those dearest to me for the launch of my first book, Can’t Breathe. I had thought this single night would lead to many more moments of embracing, strangers and friends alike. I would pull you right in, as we connected over the words within these pages I had carefully crafted over the last couple years.
But the events got cancelled. The bookstores closed. Future plans were altered.
I trust we will embrace again. Be near again. Embrace the energy within crowded rooms and intimately around dinner tables and shyly as we meet for the first time.
First though, we must embrace this new. Embrace the change. Perhaps even embrace the fear that rests as well. Most importantly embrace the small pockets of goodness throughout our days, and let this fuel us. Let this goodness ignite joy deep within, where even the fear cannot reach.
Do you feel it? I do.
In moments I simply want to crumble, because it all just feels too much, I do crumble. And then, somehow instead and as well, goodness emerges. A child’s hand reaching for mine. A spontaneous laugh down the hall. A friend’s familiar voice heard through the phone. A stranger’s hello during a weekend walk around the neighborhood. A smiling face staring back at me through a screen.
We are embracing each other with goodness and affection. Don’t you feel it? Instead of our arms, we are using our whole hearts. Instead of physical touch, we are reaching and grasping and holding close all we hold dear. By staying apart, we are drawing each other in.
And, we will embrace again. A whole body experience, that just might make us crumble. Because of its goodness.
I cannot wait to embrace you, World. In the meantime, I will embrace you from here. Willingly and enthusiastically, with all the closeness we can achieve.
Laesa Faith Kim is a finalist in the Whistler Independent Book Awards, and will appear in the Opening Night Showcase: New Voices event Thursday, October 15, 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. PDT.