We could be lovers

Five minutes ago, I was standing in the shower, hot water splattering on my chest, thinking about how we could never be lovers; because for you, I may be too serious.

But then I thought, maybe we could be lovers because we know each other. Because the first time we met, we were eleven year olds who barely knew a thing about anything, thrown into a world we did not know how to navigate. In this world, our clothes hung on our bodies for dear life because we got skinnier by the month. Because home felt farther than it was.

We could be lovers because we have watched each other out grow versions of ourselves. We have shed old skin, grown new ones and repaired broken skin we still needed. We have loved and not-loved but returned to loving again and again. We have fought. I have called you names. I have promised not to tell you anything ever again but you are still my safe place. I still tell you things because you know me. You accept me. You make it all feel small. Fixable.

Thursday night was our make up night. Bible study from 7pm to 9pm. Each time we fought, we could never get past a Thursday without relearning forgiveness. We had two hours to lift the rug and make sense of the broken pieces beneath it. I saved you a seat next to mine or you saved me one and we would sit there still a bit angry, pretending to listen while the tension between us rose like a leaf in the wind. We sat there with our throats dry and our hearts loud in our ears waiting for the first words to arrive. I cannot remember who was braver of the two of us but we walked out the hall feeling like our worlds rhymed again.

We have moved to a new continent yet we still love in the most infrequent ways. In three day old text messages and un-returned phone calls and face timing every six months. We share old jokes, old pictures, I love yous that we really mean and I miss yous that are always felt.

We are now twenty-two year olds. We talk about healthy eating, social justice, the legitimacy of christianity . We laugh (a lot). We still tell each other things we wouldn’t tell other people. Beneath the laughter, we are stripped down versions of ourselves. We share our biggest struggles; the losing and finding ourselves in cycles. We have created a dynamic that would drive normal people insane but for us, it works.

I talk about how I was such a bitch in junior high. You say “not really” a softer version of “yes really”. We call each other on nights we cannot breathe, on days it feels like the world is closing in on us and we are our last chance for air.

We could be lovers because five years ago, I watched your father drive off with you in the front seat and I thought I would miss you forever. In February, we stood in middle of a busy mall as though it hadn’t been five years. As if it had only been a week. But you could tell, couldn’t you? that we had changed, physically and in all other ways. That time had carried us through winter and fall.

We are different. You are different and yet our love feels the same – even stronger, even better. Effortless. It’s what I love most about it. There is your voice in my head, your face in a smile, your square shaped nails with its white tips and there is your handwriting, the one you changed to an uglier one in js2 because it meant you were older. I am your biggest “you-are-going-to-do-wonderful-things” and you are mine and perhaps I would be different without you.

We could be lovers but we shouldn’t be. Because at least we have each other to run to if our lovers crack us open. If our lovers leave us bleeding. We could be lovers but there is a method to us and it will not survive the heartbreak of a failed us. We could be lovers but there is not a thing in the world that compares to the ridiculousness of us; this creation. We could be lovers but I will always be too serious for you.

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the other side of truth

the truth isn’t always something we can grasp.
not because it isn’t real but because
sometimes the truth has thorns that will
journey through your defences. the truth
can in fact call forth blood.

the truth isn’t always kind or fair or soft
but we ask for it
we demand for it
as if it is meant to bring us warmth
as if it is supposed to bring us comfort
sometimes the truth is that lump in your throat
that song on the radio
that hand around your neck
sometimes the truth arrives and we cannot stomach it
because it’s nothing like we have imagined.

sometimes the truth breaks us
into pieces. Sometimes,
it doesn’t set us free.

Please be innocent.

Dear child,
From the moment I learn of your inception inside of me,
My spirit will grow new hands to hold and shield you with.
And though you would not be born into this world yet,
I will speak true and noble things into your precious soul.

Dear Child,
I will love you with all the purity my heart can possibly muster,
I will sing to you on rainy days and laugh with you in the shinning sun.
I will be the wall the fire has to burn down to get through to you,
Your heart, your mind and spirit will be surrounded by lovely virtue.

So when the world throws hypocrisy and cynicism at you,
I would have equipped you with enough truth and optimism.
When racism is served to you in the name of skin colour,
You will remember that who a person is on the inside is all that matters.

For as long as you allow me to, for as long as I possibly can,
I will keep your mind uncorrupted by evil and malice.
All the simple things will be what makes your life so great,
You will be beautiful in your imperfection ,You will accept yourself.

Dear child,
Cling to your innocence with your tender hands,
Because once you lose it, it is impossible to get it back.
As you grow older, innocence slips away a little more,
So enjoy the pleasure of just not knowing. Be a child.
Don’t grow up too fast but when you finally do,
Stay young at heart and forgive like a child would.
Innocence is beautiful, believe me, it really is.

DEAR EIGHTEEN-YEAR-OLD-ME

Dear eighteen-year-old-me,
Just incase the sun does not shine tomorrow,
Be sure to have a flashlight in your backpack
And some extra batteries, Duracell preferably
Because one thing is certain,
Whether you’re ready or not, Life will go on.

Everyday you wake up to the light of a new day ,
Is an opportunity to love, laugh,Forgive, fight,
and never ever  give up, As long as you’re still breathing,
Quitting should never be an option.

I want you to not only see the world but feel the world,
Let your heart be your eyes,
Look beyond every sunset and every tear,
And even as you have your eyes up and wide open,
Don’t be afraid to look down and watch your step,
Not every ground on which you stand is solid ground.

Your heart and your head combined,
Make the most efficient and powerful GPS ever,
As you navigate your way through life,
Don’t be afraid to stop and smell the roses,
Make out time for friends and family,
Don’t go through life as if you’ll live forever,
Take time out to breathe…. you need to.

you see your heart,
it’s going to get broken a couple of times,
but there’s no heart too broken that God cant fix,
so don’t be afraid to take calculated risks,
the results may not turn out how u want ’em to,
but one thing’s certain, if u fall,
God will be waiting with his arms stretched out.

Dear eighteen year old me,
I’m pretty sure you still have many more years to live
And many more things you’re yet to be,
Don’t live in anger of the past or fear of tomorrow,
And just in case tomorrow doesn’t come,
I hope u can look back and smile.