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I Will Be Brave

By , Redondo Beach, CA
There’s a white one in front of us.
And a black one pulls up after that.
But no one feels like calling them.
Awkward silence
Is deafening.
Who knew?
I feel a little better.
I get a breather.
Then the wave crashed down again,
And it hits me again.
And my eyes burn.
I turn away from him, determined not to let him see my tears.
Determined to be brave.
Not to cry in front of anyone.
It’s harder than it looks.
“Welcome Home,” the sign says.
Could this be home? I ask.
I try to convince myself that it could me, maybe, someday.
Deep down, though, I think I know,
It’s not. Not now, anyway.
“Let’s take a walk,” he says.
We walk down four stairs and sit down.
Some walk.
“Don’t you have questions? Anything you want to say?” he says.
Sure I do.
How ‘bout I’m hurt?
I’m betrayed?
I’m the tiniest bit angry?
How ‘bout I want to know why?
What we did?
What you couldn’t figure out.
“You can cry.” He says.
No I can’t.
I need to be brave. I need to.
For myself, for you, for my sisters.
“It’s really ok,” he says.
Says who?
You made this decision. And you kept it from us. For two years.
And you expect me to agree with “It’s ok”?
I say none of this.
I stay quiet.
I’m being brave again,
I fight to keep the tears back, but…
There goes being brave.
I get a good, long, hard cry later.
When I’m alone.
When being brave doesn’t matter anymore.
“Welcome home,” the sign said.
I am home now.
But it doesn’t feel like it anymore.
Am I still being brave?





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