What are you afraid of?

When I was 17, I would’ve told you turning 21.

At 21, with smoke in my veins and ash in my throat,
It was of no longer being 19.
Nineteen was the age of freedom,
Before responsibilities were a real thing.
When bills got paid via an automatic deduction
From a bank account that was always magically positive,
When the biggest problems in life was
Whether or not I wanted to fly to NYC for the weekend,
Whether I wanted to go to the Kina Grannis concert,
Whether I really wanted those new jeans from Hollister.

21 was the year I discovered monsters don’t live under your bed.
There aren’t haunted houses but there are
Haunted people and really dimly lit staircases.
21 was the year I realized there are certain precipices
Which you can never recover from slipping over.
Time doesn’t heal everything and you can gloss over facts
But you can never be innocent ever again.
21 was the year I made decisions that would
Turn out to be the best thing I ever did
And the worst mistake I’ll ever make.

I’m afraid of a lot of things: 1} of opening my eyes–
The monster in the mirror might scream out
All the terrible truths that I’ve buried inside my head.
2} of going to sleep. The dreams that wait burn with
Yearning and the fear is that Reality will never match
Because sometimes, you fuck up really hard
And then fuck up some more because you fucked up.
Of 3} being the number that will never again be my favourite.
Why does less than 3 get to be love when
3 divided by 2 is halved? Never again whole.

At 24, it’s still that morning at 21, crying over a positive.

—–
when does the truth set you free?

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