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And for my next trick:

It began with a little magic trick.

It began with playing cards under the covers, the paper slapping against one another as you muffled your giggles and performed in whispers. It began with the pure desire to entertain and surprise, to offer your parents a slice of pride. It began with taking large strides into a world that is plagued with darkness and lies so it feels like entering with your arms already tied. You started out by trying to be part of a world that thrives off of divides but over time you found it easier to hide.

Your magic tricks began to change as you incorporated diversions of all kinds and hid your own bewilderment behind a gleaming smile and kind eyes. You sprinkled my whines and cries with fairy-dusted advice and you chanted mantras that proved you were wise. The vibrato of your laugh continued to evolve into the perfect disguise, and your quick wit showed you weren’t afraid to improvise. Like a magician with an entire toy store up your sleeves, we would all light up whenever you would arrive, trailing behind you like putty in your hands, ready to go along for the ride. You painted yourself in so much fairy dust, it became difficult to ignore your shine or to ever believe that there may be something underlying.

It became difficult to remember that this all began as a little game to pass the time. It began as a little party trick to bring to your guests after a couple of glasses of wine, it was never meant to be a way of life. Your quick wit and charm was never meant to be your demise. What we saw as your strengths turned out to be walls to keep us out so you could hide. Walls that you built for so many years, they became tall enough to scrape through the sky. Walls so tall, scaling them seemed too impossible to try so you decided to tie bedsheets around your neck and hoist yourself up so high, you were embraced by the divine. You escaped without waiting to say goodbye. And I sit amongst the walls wondering why. You may have spent years perfecting a disguise but I wonder how you never saw that these walls are made of paper. I wonder how this flimsy house of cards from under the covers reversed the trick on the magician, and confined him in such a fortress of his own imagination that his only way out was one of pure desperation.

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