”So many people and no one talks?” I muttered, on a packed subway train in NYC.
He was about 55, dressed in a suit, and slid over to let two women sit down. “What’s that?” He asked, nodding towards the tattoo on my arm.
“A monster coming out” I told him.
“Is it you?” He asked…
I nodded, “it was when I got it, but not anymore” I felt the shame come over me, as I always do, when anyone points out my mess of tattoos. He saw the flight tag still attached to my backpack and asked where I was from. He shared his experience with New Orleans, and talked about his brother dying and how he still cries. He said I had something but he didn’t know what.. I just talked in return and told him his brother has moved on to another amazing life and how I believe if he lets go of the “should” that he “should still be here”.. He will experience knowing he is .. Just in a different light. He told me about a time that he almost drowned, and how peaceful he felt in that moment, and then his brother pulled him up out of the water. I told him about how I’d spent years suicidal, trying to die, and then had to fight cancer. I told him how I’m now traveling on blind faith. I never know fully how I will make it from place to place, but I know I’ll survive.. I always do.
We got off at the same stop, 157th street. The stairs had two exits so we took separate ones. I wished I had taken his picture. At the top, he rounded the corner and called “Storme.. How are you funding your travels?” So I told him artwork., frugal living and faith” he handed me $40 and said “thank you, you are beautiful” he didn’t want his picture taken, but his name was Jim. I thanked him.
He told me “have some
Fun with that while you’re in NY” and I told him I wanted to see the last Yankee game of the season against the Red Sox. He said he is a sox fan so I agreed not to root ☺️
Thank you Jim. It is you who is beautiful, I just listened, and in listening to a complete stranger open up without being asked to, I felt so completely filled with human love. So thank you. I wish I could tell you that in person.