**Warning: A bit of naughty language below!**
I don’t want to flirt with life, to bat my eyelashes shyly at my dreams.
I don’t want to sit there looking cute, wearing a spotless white dress, playing it safe, crossing my fingers, biting my lower lip and hoping for the best.
I want to get the fuck up, chase my passions with a heart full of dedicated fire and make out with my fear.
I want to get my hands dirty, stick out my tongue and create a luscious life with gushing neon paint and fresh, salty tears.
I want to take chances, leap terrifying leaps and make shit happen.
I want to plunge inside the shadow depths of my soul and shed my skin like an ancient snake.
I want to know my power, feel my fire, love my sadness, bathe in the blood of my failures, rock my deep-flowin’ tenderness and roar.
I want to build my life and climb the swinging licorice ropes of my dreams—
I want to hold the people I love so tightly, embrace them with glowing warmth and fierce passion—not with dainty, lifeless, dead-fish hands.
I want to kiss like I could die tomorrow, because I could. We all could.
I want to speak the ugly, beautiful truth and stop apologizing for who I am.
I want to live like I mean it—
With a curious heart and muddy feet and snarled, messy hair and tear-stained cheeks and dirty fingernails and smiles so big they crack my lips open.
I don’t want a peaceful, perfect little sweet charmed fairytale fantasy
I want a real life.
A gritty, juicy, real life, dripping with truth, filled with disappointments and not-so-pretty lessons.
Because I am not a sweet, precious little fairytale princess—
I am thunder.
I am lightning.
I am pain.
I am love.
I am failure.
I am darkness.
I am truth.
I am a woman.
And I bask in it all. Every ounce of it.
Life flows through my veins—it thumps with my heartbeat—and I feel the fire, the pouring rain, the gentle, balmy breezes, the muddy, musky, grass-scented earth.
And I love it all.
I bow down to the ripples of sadness, the bittersweet confusion, the rejection, the serenity, the fear.
It all swirls in my heart, breathing inspiration into me, carving memories under my skin, painting me into the messy masterpiece I’m constantly becoming.
I want to taste this life with my whole being—kiss it, claim it, grab it.
I want to reach out, with thirsty hands and a ridiculously starving soul.
I want to claim life,
Make hot, passionate love to it,
Squeeze it like a ripe tangerine,
Pick it like a purple dahlia in full bloom,
And taste it all.
I want to let life consume me like a wildfire, as flames lap at my feet, as tears bless my cheeks, as the ashes of the past rain down all around me like tender cherry blossom memories.
I want to celebrate birth, death, earth-shattering heartbreak, teary-eyed joy, wrinkles, sadness, boredom, howling laughter and doubtful uncertainty—
All of it.
Flirting with life will never fill me up; winking seductively at my passions will never do a damn thing; chasing happiness is exhausting as hell, and sparkly smalltalk can never sustain me.
I am not meant to sit on the sunny, helpless sidelines with a polite smile stapled to my face, and play it small and play it safe.
I am meant to go out and make shit happen. To weave my dreams into unapologetic reality. To sketch my purpose into gritty, jeweled existence. To speak loudly.
I am meant to challenge this world.
I am meant to challenge myself.
I am meant to feel the hot pain of tears. To taste the blistering sweetness of love.
I am meant to fall down. Get my heart broken. Kiss my shadows.
I am meant to rise, to be destroyed, reborn and awakened—time and time again.
I don’t want to flirt with life, I want to claim it.
I want to bite into the days,
Embrace the seconds,
Be transformed by the moments,
Come home to my own soul
Over and over again—
Until I remember who I
Until I remember
Author: Sarah Harvey
Editor: Toby Israel
Photo: Daniela Brown/Flickr