First, I’ll say, “I’m sorry.”
I’m sorry for how many days you’ve spent
not wanting to see the next. I’m sorry for
how much it hurts, and I’m sorry you have
to drag that hurt behind you everywhere you go.
I’m sorry for the times when you don’t even feel
the hurt and what’s left- nothing- is so much scarier.
I’m sorry for how scared you are. I’m sorry for how tired
you are. I’m sorry for all the moments you’ve missed out on
while you stayed in bed convincing yourself to keep breathing.
I’m sorry. I’ve been there. Some days, I’m still there.
Second, I’ll say, “brave,”
which is what you are. There is nothing braver than
living through these days with the curtains drawn tight
around your chest and these nights where every candle you own
couldn’t emit enough light to help you find your way.
There is nothing braver than living through these feelings.
You are a warrior in an unsuspecting body, fighting every day
just to be. And I know-
I know how it feels to be in a fistfight with yourself, with your
memories, with your trauma, with your pain. I know how it feels
to beg your brain to be quiet just for a moment, to search for peace
everywhere, to dig through every pile of dirt, to search between every
page of every book, to play hide-and-seek with peace when it is always
changing the rules. You are so brave to keep looking.
Third, I’ll say “tomorrow,”
which is what I want you to promise me. I know tomorrow isn’t
something you think about a lot, and, if you do, it’s not with rose-colored
glasses. Sometimes tomorrow feels impossible. The night is so long
when you feel like you want to die and the dawn seems miles away.
I know. There are so many nights I’ve curled up in bed with
anxiety, who scoots over to make room for depression,
who always calls dibs on the good pillow and there I am,
knees bumping into the wall, begging them to leave me alone. And again, I’m sorry. I’m
sorry these nights visit you more often
than they don’t. I’m sorry they’re such rude guests,
keeping you awake until morning, leaving you scared to sleep lest they get you into
trouble when you’re not watching.
The promise I need you to make is this: We’ll see each other tomorrow.
Tonight doesn’t always keep its promises, but tomorrow has potential.
Find one good thing and hold it tight between your fingers and wait for tomorrow. I
know it’s hopeful of me to ask, but can I see you tomorrow? Tomorrow
is a place where things can be handled and coffee can be made and
you can have your favorite dinner. Tomorrow is a place where we can
figure out a better way to cope with living and tomorrow is a place where,
one day, we won’t be coping – we’ll be living. Tomorrow is where I’ll
see you. I’ll see you tomorrow. I promise.
Can you promise me tomorrow?
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