The sun broke over the tree line as my eyelids fluttered open.
It was rare in a home of ten for one to spend the day alone;
but I learned early on that I had rather weather the forest
than the family. My fingers clumsily brushed teeth and tied laces
And I retreated to the trees; my living sanctuary. The crisp air
bit at my lungs as I crunched step by step into the darkness.
I ventured towards the places where sunlight never reached, and couldn’t
help but notice a resemblance to whatever was building inside of me.
Some things shouldn’t be carried by a twelve year old, but it was
a weight that everyone expected me to bare. Mother raised us to
smile through the pain, and they used to say mine could light up a room.
I’d stand there in the middle smiling, praying that someone might see me,
but no one ever did. Apparently, It’s difficult to see scars that are on the inside.
Quietly, I wrapped them in promises and dreams, and waited for them to heal.
I left town with everything I owned, searching the big city for the journey
of a lifetime. Instead, I found three more broken hearts and distrust
towards anyone expressing genuine kindness or concern for me.
The best-worst decision I ever made was confronting that asshole
who tried to slip me her therapists business card. She almost kicked
my ass, but today she’s my best friend. You know that love is real
when someone gives it to you when it's not required. It took me three years,
nine months, and twenty three days to accept it when you left. And even now
I’m not sure I could say no to you if you walked through that door. What I do
know is it was cold in the shadows, and I never want to die there again.