Before I met him, I would dance in the shower.
When he was in my life, I would think about showering with him.
After he left, I would sit on the ground in the shower and cry.
When I got over him, I showered so quickly there was no time for dancing, fantasies or tears.
Someone can invade the smallest parts of your life,
you won’t even realize it until you dance in the shower again
and wonder why you ever stopped.
because I knew my therapist was right
and I wanted to keep being wrong.
I wanted to keep my bad habits
like charms on a bracelet.
I did not want to be brave.
I think I like my brain best
in a bar fight with my heart.
I think I like myself a little broken.
I’m ok if that makes me less loved.
I like poetry better than therapy anyway.
The poems never judge me
for healing wrong.
There is a shipwreck between your ribs and it took eighteen years
for me to understand how to understand your kind of drowning.
There are people who cannot be held quietly. There are screams
that are never externalized. If I looked at the photo albums of your
past twenty years, all I would find are decibel meter graphs of
phone calls and the intensity of your silence as you sat
smoking cigarettes in the garage.
There is a shipwreck between your ribs. You are a box with
fragile written on it, and so many people have not handled you
And for the first time, I understand that I will never know
how to apologize for being
one of them.
I wonder if part of the reason so many young people get diagnosed with mental disorders in college is because that’s the only time they get access to mental health care without their parents telling them they’re making it up
i will always be the person who went to the grocery store in cigarette-burned pajamas every day for five months
i will always be the person who wanted to die and didn’t
i will always be the person who lost twenty pounds
in one month and i will always be the person who gained it back
i will always be the person who decided, while crying
in the passenger seat of your car, to be better
i will always be the person who paused when you first said “i love you”
just to take the moment in
i will always be the person who survived the unsurvivable i will always be the person who fought like hell for it