When Did I Stop?

When Did I Stop?

How growing up can stifle you

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As I grow older, the world seems to grow less and less vibrant. I find myself feeling as though my body is always exhausted, my mind clouded, and my emotions muffled. This poem attempts to capture that feeling, particularly with the imagery of a "small girl" who is trapped in a cage in my mind. This girl represents the freedom of expression that many people experience in their childhood. As children, people do not hesitate to cry, yell, fight, or say whatever thought or opinion pops into their head. The older I grow, the more hesitant I am to do those things. While this is not necessarily a negative development in my life, sometimes it can feel very confining. I hope that this poem conveys that feeling.


When did I stop?


when did I stop being able to speak?

why does every sentence clumsily spill out of my mouth, out of order in slippery slurs?

when did my body stop feeling?

why does every kiss feel like a mechanical routine of touch, tongues like penetrative cardboard?

when did my eyes stop crying?

why do I weep only in dreams, dreams when everyone dies, but not when I wake and notice those same people slowly being driven to death?

when did I stop fighting?

why do I sit silently, slightly grinning and shaking my head in hopeless acceptance of the evil they spit out their mouths?


So each year adds another layer

caging that small girl in my mind who used to dance in my tears

she doesn't get to dance anymore

memories and experiences are shoved in through my ears, filling my head

the cage walls crash in around her now

I become a wandering animal, untouched, wearily indifferent,

simply a fortress trapping that spirit who used to frolic through my thoughts, my emotions, my tears

and even if someone were to tear through her shackles,

would she even remember how to dance anymore?

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When You Make A Girl An Aunt, You Change Her World In All The Best Ways

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest girl in the world.

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My brother and his wife recently blessed our family with the sweetest bundle of joy on planet earth. OK, I may be a little bias but I believe it to be completely true. I have never been baby crazy, but this sweet-cheeked angel is the only exception. I am at an age where I do not want children yet, but being able to love on my nephew like he is my own is so satisfying.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a very protective person.

From making sure the car seat is strapped in properly before every trip, to watching baby boy breathe while he sleeps, you'll never meet someone, besides mommy and daddy of course, who is more concerned with the safety of that little person than me.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her a miniature best friend.

There is something about an aunt that is so fun. An aunt is a person you go to when you think you're in trouble or when you want something mom and dad said you couldn't have. An aunt is someone who takes you to get ice cream and play in the park to cool down after having a temper tantrum. I can't wait to be the one he runs to.

When you make a girl an aunt, she gets to skip on the difficulty of disciplining.

Being an aunt means you get to be fun. Not to say I wouldn't correct my nephew if he were behaving poorly, but for the most part, I get to giggle and play and leave the hard stuff for my brother.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her the best listening ears.

As of right now I only listen to the sweet coos and hungry cries but I am fully prepared to listen to all the problems in his life in the future.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the best advice giver.

By the time my nephew needs advice, hopefully, I will have all of my life lessons perfected into relatable stories.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a number-one fan

Anything you do in life sweet boy, I will be cheering you on. I already know you are going to do great things.

When you make a girl an aunt, she learns what true love is.

The love I have for my nephew is so pure. Its the love that is just there. I don't have to choose to show love every day, I don't have to forgive, I don't have to worry if it is reciprocated, it is just there.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest person in the world.

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Goodbye School, Hello Real World

I'm ready for ya!

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It's starting to hit me.

I've been in school, year after year, since kindergarten. Maybe even pre-school!

Now, I'm about to graduate with my bachelors in communication and I couldn't be more proud of myself. I'll say it. I often sugarcoat it or suppress it but d*mn it. I'm going to applaud myself. It was hard work. It took a lot of motivation, determination, (caffeine), and willpower to get to where I am today. I worked my ass off.

That being said, I can't help but think... What is life without due dates? What is life like without scrambling to turn in an assignment that's due at 11:59 PM? What is life like with actual sleep? Sleep? I don't know her.

Like I keep telling my boyfriend and my parents, I don't have it all figured out. At least not right now. But I will, and I'm in no rush to land my dream job right now. If anything, I want to take a year to myself. I want to travel. I want to sleep in if I d*mn well please! I want to read as many books as I want. I want to write till my fingers fall off (OK, maybe not that).

You get the jist.

I'm free. I can do and be whatever I want. And you know what? That's terrifying.

I'm lost. I've followed this structure for so long. Now what?

I don't have all the answers yet. But for now, at least right at this very moment, I'm so thankful to have been able to receive such an amazing education. And to be able to say I'm graduating with my bachelors in communication at 21 is an accomplishment in itself.

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