knocks and you're in before i can respond: the usual ball of bouncy cheerful light that you are. and you're just talking as you remove your socks, your shoes. "what happened?" "nothing"
"nothing needs to happen"
a snap. curl up, shaking; all i can do is hold you. i love you and i cannot bear your pain for you but i would cut my own flesh if it would stop your bleeding. my heart aches with your sickness anyhow. i whisper it's okay to feel this way. it's okay to cry.
as i curl up over you on the floor i muse at how just a couple of years ago it was always me: i was always the hopeless dreadful case, the bag of tears, the one who never lifted her head when she walked; the one who was afraid of reflective surfaces, afraid of what she wouldn't see. the one who always yearned, the one who couldn't deal with the daggers.
not anymore. i have decided that love is too hard, too painful, and now i run away from the fire. but it has become my turn to be the seasoned, sympathetic heart, the arm that holds.
school, school is okay. the workload is tough, and the tests tell us we are not ready, but there is a structure, a guaranteed method; a way to navigate ourselves. read, think, ask questions. no one taught us how to handle this.
we are all veterans yet babies; we fall and fall but it is never enough.
you sit up, and we are quiet. we are okay, now, for now. a long stretch of quiet.
"gotta go." two seconds and you've picked up your stuff and are halfway through the door. you look out to make sure no one's there, and then you are gone, the bounce back in your steps, the alertness back in your eyes.
it is amazing, these masks so many of us put on and take off so instantly. like a hairband. a split second and our hair is down, long flowy tresses that tremble in the wind and change its sheen at every angle. off-guard, we are alive and beautiful in our fallenness. then a split second and we are prim and neat, fresh, spotless.
i can't do that much. when i'm a mess, it shows. my guard is too often down. and you must remember that i will sit by you and blend with your rainbow mess when you let your guard down, too.
a pool of sweat and tears remains on my floor.