Growing New Hearts

Today, I decided to send my wonderful friend Jess something that I wrote in April, just near the end of my semester in London. I sometimes look back at it when I need a pick-me-up, or a little inspiration to keep moving forward, and I thought that it would be something cool to share.

It starts with a description of a picture of Courtney Love’s personal journal after Kurt Cobain’s first suicide attempt. I’m a really big Nirvana fan, and of course, have always been fascinated with Kurt Cobain. He was not only multi-talented, but reading his biography, I found that I can relate to a lot of the questioning and uncertainty that Kurt held about life and his place in the world. In a way, I’m oddly attracted to that dark aspect of Kurt Cobain, the man plagued by depression, drug addiction, and self-loathing. I don’t think this is a bad thing, I just think that knowing more about Kurt’s struggle and his questioning makes me feel like it’s okay to be not okay sometimes, you know?

That sounds like a somber preview to any piece of writing, but I promise, it gets better.

April 9th, 2013 

It’s so heart-breaking how life works sometimes and how life just crushes other people to the point that they break.

I just am looking through my tumblr, and it’s weird I’m bringing this up again but I found the picture I reblogged that came from Courtney Love’s journal. It’s two pages. One side has a picture of the heart-shaped box (like the song!) she originally gave Kurt, I don’t remember why. I want to say it was like an apology of some sort, but I think I remember reading in his biography that it was a gift to him from her – after one of their first meetings. She sprayed her perfume in it and Kurt loved to smell it because it smelled like her. Courtney was trying to get Kurt to be with her at this point, but he was still resistant and too shy.

Anyway, above the picture of the box is a note, presumably from Courtney, that’s addressed to Kurt and Frances Bean. It reads,

Kurt and Frances Bean
I love you
Please forgive me.
Please Frances
You Are
both too beautiful
for me
I love you 4ever

The following page is a page of something she wrote, presumably after Kurt died. It starts with the line “Nothing will ever again be the same.” It goes on to talk about Kurt’s attempted suicide in Rome, and how the last time she made love to her husband was 1 month previously to her writing her thoughts down.

But perhaps, the most striking thing is the anecdote that covers both pages. Scrawled in red pen, over both pages of the journal, are the words “I can’t grow a new heart.” They’re the biggest and most noticeable part of the photograph, the first thing to pop out at you.

How completely, utterly, devastating.

“I can’t grow a new heart.”

And don’t we all wish at some point that we could? That we could let go of heartache and misery and the feeling of being broken that weighs us down and plagues our hearts to their deepest depths? It’s so terrifying and honest and real.

We can’t grow new hearts. We just have to learn to slowly let ours heal; stitch up the wounds, fill the holes left by those we used to love with new experiences and new joys and new ways we’ve learned to laugh and love and be happy again. We can never get a new heart – we just have to learn to make due with the one we’re given, and prove time and time again that it, and we, can be repaired, until our hearts stop beating.

The heart is incredible. Truly incredible. I’m not even sure how to really talk about it, you know? It’s the source to all human life. It’s what keeps us alive. But also, it’s what holds our deepest despairs and our strongest feelings and emotions and the very core of us and who we are. All that we are comes from our heart.

Isn’t that just, insane? I can’t really wrap my head around it.

It’s kind of an overwhelming idea, but it gives me hope at times. Our hearts repair themselves over and over and over again. Just because your heart has been broken, doesn’t mean that you’re broken. I think that every one can relate to going through trying periods of  life characterized by struggle and adversity. Throughout struggle, throughout despair and consuming sadness, your heart keeps beating. Your heart, with help from your mind, can heal the emotional wounds you’ve suffered. You can’t grow a new heart, but yours can be repaired, and that, that’s what’s beautiful.

All my love,

Paige

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