In order for you to be here today, witchling, many things had to happen just so.

First, the Big Bang.

Then, stars had to form; matter had to be ejected from them.

Floating space rocks had to coalesce into cumbersome orbs, and then water had to organize itself.

Deep in the depths, unimaginable alchemy occurred at a scale that you are incapable of witnessing with your naked eye. Only then did wiggling life emerge, and that was only the beginning.

Life had to divide and then multiply for millions of years in order to draw near to where you are now, so far ahead in the future. It had to grow gills and fins and then feet and foreheads in its relentless pursuit of you, here, in this very moment.

It had to live in trees and then come down and build houses. Wars had to be lost and won. Children had to be born, and they had to survive for decades, an extraordinary achievement given the formidable circumstances surrounding them. If only one of your ancestors had kicked off earlier, you wouldn’t exist at all, dear. 

Love had to be made; rape had to be endured.

It wasn’t all pretty, but it all led to you, and that makes you a remarkable feat before your feet ever hit the floor in the morning, child. 

Dreams were deferred and hopes abandoned, but you never were.

Even if you don’t do anything else the rest of the day, even if you sit in a warm bath with a glass of wine and your thoughts, you’ve already accomplished more than you give yourself credit for.

It’s a thin thread that connects you back to the Big Bang, and a winnowing force is always at work, dismissively clipping the filaments. But you have survived it all: the Big Bang, the stars, the water, the wars, the winnowing.

You are a force of nature, an outpouring of audacity, and this is only the beginning. 

xo Sheridan Goodluck

Artwork: Mary Magdalene as Melancholy by Artemisia Gentileschi