Who is this heart we speak of?

Why do we talk about our hearts as though they are not the thing that beats inside our chest?

My heart, she beats rhythmically, keeping my blood flowing– pump, pump, pumping, steadily, never missing a beat. She knows when to beat faster to keep up with my running feet and when to slow down to the pace of my quieting mind. Her steady thumping inside my chest reminds me that I’m living; I’m breathing; I’m existing. It’s all because of her. She beats inside my chest, rhythmically, steadily, never missing a beat.

But I put her down, talking about her like she’s ill with ventricular fibrillation. Up, down, up, down; emotionless, then full of joy, then stricken with disappointment. I say she’s a whore, throwing herself on anything that catches her eye. I say she is cracked, broken, desperately in need of repair. I say she’s got her head in the clouds. I say she’s distracted, not doing her job, not keeping me safe and full of life. But she is. She is a hard worker. My heart has always been faithful, beating rhythmically, steadily, never missing a beat.

My heart, she remains inside my chest, beating faithfully. She is not a whore. She is not broken. She has never been distracted from her vital task. So, who is this other heart we speak of? Who is this heart that breaks? Who is this heart who risks my safety for her satisfaction? Who is this heart who keeps on missing beats?


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