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Things I think about after you've fallen asleep...

Things I think about after you’ve fallen asleep:

I wonder what it’s like for you to really know me. I wonder if you feel deceived after falling for a woman so put together, a strong woman who refused to be bowled over; I wonder how you felt the first time you saw through her to find a meek little girl playing pretend with reality?

I wonder what it was like to see my armor melt into puddles and to hold a cracked heart that’s so fragile, it could shatter within seconds bursting like a bubble. I wonder what it was like for you to be introduced to a woman who’s forever praised for her strength but if you come close enough, you’ll see how all her pieces are completely muddled. For no one else has ever come this close. No one else has ever knocked down walls with a gentle bat of an eye, nor has anyone ever clawed through the barbed wire with a simple smile. The people closest to me, those by blood and those I consider family, all have been kept at a distance for their safety. To maintain their illusion of me – that I am a fighter, a go-getter, the opposite of a quitter, so nobody has to worry about me. But when I wasn’t looking, you snuck past security and now you’re standing backstage, seeing me for me.

I wonder how I make you feel. If the thorns of my trauma are so long, they reach over to stab you too inadvertently. For I don’t mean to be brimming with fears and defeat but darkness is contagious so I wonder how long I have left to save you from drowning with me? I wonder if my thorns scrape against your own wounds that you wear so gracefully. Wounds from arrows shot at you from afar and wounds from those that crept too close only to steal a part before walking away shamelessly. I wonder how you still have so much to give me. I wonder how you carry so much inside, how you spend nights awake in turmoil, how you believe you have so much to hide, and yet your forehead devoid of any lines. With smooth porcelain skin that stretches over, I wonder how despite all your pain, you still have room within you for mine.

I wonder what I did right in another life for you to roll over and wrap your arms around me. How you see more truths than I have ever cared to say out loud, and yet you still show up the next day unfailingly. I wonder if you feel tricked by the image of myself that I wear so proudly, the one that falls apart in your hands like flaky pastry only to reveal that I am nothing more than the crumbs swept away eventually. I wonder why seeing the truth hasn’t scared you off already. I wonder how you still look at me like I’m whole when we both know of all the gaping holes piercing through my body.

Every night after you fall asleep, I watch your chest rise and fall as you gently breathe and I lie next to you, trying to match your speed, as you nuzzle your face into my neck and pull me closer, and I wonder what I have done to deserve lying here tonight, wrapped up in an answered prayer.

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