Jumping the Cliff

The weird part isn’t the expectations of what you should be, or who you were, or who, inevitably you are. The weird part is the change. The moment you realize this life is a new one. Not one that you returned for parts and made of it what you could, its the one you never thought you’d drive. Shining sliver emblems attached to the hood… The parts all came together in this way that you cant really explain but you try too. You answer their questions, you parade their admirations, but you, for the first time are truly a part of something so great, so different, so not you that you’re constantly reminding yourself that it is how it appears. Brighter. The ceilings are higher, the colors are brighter. You stop choosing black as your go to color and opt for burgundy’s and rustic teals instead. You decorate your home, or your body differently than you used to. You want people to be able to read you, but make sure they never stumble upon the missing chapters. The ones you tore apart your body in. The ones that scream pain, darkness. Those chapters used to lead people into believing you needed to be saved. But you’re not a kitten, stuck in a tree somewhere. Youre not the kind of girl that heard fairytales and learned that monsters exist. Youre the kind of girl that read fairytales and learned that monsters can be killed.

Youre quiet a lot, when you’ve been through things that other people fear understanding. This life isnt meant for the tamed. People try to relate, when they know you come from an ironically claimed “colored past”. And when they do you nod often, but not too often, and you use vocal ques to assure you answer their statements with an interested quip or an assuring “exactly” Like they get it. They don’t get it. No one gets it. You don’t even get it. Because you yearn for normal to find out, there really is no such thing. It’s an idea that we kill ourselves trying to attain, just to capture a moment where you’re not being watched or pitied or disowned. Just normal. Normal like you write down grocery lists by aisle so you don’t have to retrace your steps looking for sugar in the ethnic food isle. Normal like you wake up in the morning without that extra deep breath into your pillow. Normal like you believe your parents to be- until adulthood blows that myth right out of the water. This is the awakening, the moment. There is no normal. There is just good, sometimes even great and if you’re really lucky- enviable. But the latter only works when envy is sought out by those quietly watching, not those your performing for. Performance kills happiness always, and if that last statement makes no sense to you, then trust me… you’re doing it wrong. Happiness isnt a trophy behind glass that those aspiring for the same pat you on the back for. Happiness is never needing any awareness that such trophy exists at all.

So you mend, and you seek and you trust. You slow down, you accept silence and you rock a newborn in a chair until their head falls limp and you are in complete awe of their vulnerability. People ask you what changed and if your answer is anything other than jumping with your eyes closed and trusting the water is deep enough, you’re still holding on. Holding onto the past, the present, the future, the fairytale, the unattainable wealth or unearned fame. Change is unconscionably scary. Change is regret and acceptance and uncertainty and faith. Change is God for some, and reason for others and change is the only key to unlock yourself from rock bottom. Change is beautiful. And change, like life, is only attained when youve stopped forcing its will and allow, with eyes closed, someone to push you off that cliff without ever seeing if the water is even there.

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