My loved one gazed at me with an intense look of confusion, why? Suddenly my brain went numb. My tongue was tied and my teeth became the bars of a jail cell, holding my truth as the prisoner. In that instant, I realized that I was a criminal. I was a vigilante. I took action to help those in need. I walked empty corridors allowing my fingers to trace the wall staining it with my memories. I stole people’s heart and kept them tucked and locked away somewhere safe. I assaulted those who dared walk past me with a blinding smile and twinkling eyes, reminding them that there is light in this world. I played a good game until I was caught.
The thing about being there for everybody else is you start to lose yourself in the process. Soon you forget what you like to do, and it is engraved in your mind what you have to do. I broke my back for people who can’t even spell my name, but I thought it was okay because it gave purpose.
Purpose, the gas in the engine that pushed us down the highway. The gentle hum of our vehicles the only reminder of those surrounding us. I was low on gas and used my good deeds as pick me ups. Short quick burst of energy that felt like a drug. Seeing the satisfaction, seeing the joy light upon the person’s face. Knowing that I did something good with my existence, even if I felt like I didn’t deserve to breathe that day.
Inevitably, you gain tolerance and my vehicle stalled, what was I supposed to do? I took it as a sign. All the other cars had passed me leaving this road bare and empty. Under the highway, a stream flowed peacefully. Water has always been a metaphor, it possesses the power to both hurt and sustain life. I walk to the edge and ask the wind to tip me over so fault wouldn’t fall toward me. I floated down like the first leaf of fall. Time building up to a head. The water assaults me and pulls me under, and for the first time I can breathe.