On the daily, the mesh of feelings one goes through is a complex web of everything: one moment, its cold charcoal—dark and just there. The next moment, it’s a fire, out of control and burning everything down. Before you know it, it’s embers, glowing softly and giving warmth in moderation, just enough to keep you from collapsing into a pathetic pile of ash.

Sometimes, it’s just plain old ash. You’re at the mercy of the wind, the intensity of which will determine how much and how far you will scatter into the abyss.

There’s never any knowing how it will turn out for us. Fires rage, embers glow and the ashes leave in a puff, never to be seen again. But there’s always more charcoal, and there’s always more matches. It’s the infinite supply of reasons, that never-ending ration of hope and hopelessness, will and unwillingness.

Its a cycle of replenishment, however. Of growth and rejuvenation, in bits and pieces. It’s like a Chuck Close painting where every small square is it’s own distinct piece of work but when all the squares are brought together, there’s a singular, coherent piece of just…art. Good, honest art.

A little girl once came up to me, touched my knee, and said, “Your knee is growing.” In that moment, she was a sage; wise beyond her years, looking up at me with eyes wide open, her pinky finger still resting on my knee. Unbeknownst to her, she was an epiphany standing before my very eyes.

I posted an unnecessarily mandatory tweet on this encounter, but never voiced that this encounter opened for me deeply clogged arteries of vision.

Yes, our knees are growing. And so are our elbows, our ankles, and our hearts. Our minds are growing, our nails are growing, our hair is growing. It’s all growing. There is growth intrinsic in us. We are a living contraption of growth, and accepting that an ignored but highly important part of us such as our knee is also growing can light our way. We are growth. And in lieu of that, we are hope.

We are growing hope and hope growing.