Your life could have happened differently. You’ll wish you had more, or that you understood, and your feelings will breathe by the words: sometimes life needs a little struggle. It hasn’t gotten easier I’m afraid, but you do get stronger, smarter, and sillier, if you could see it.
So, if I can confess, I don’t think you should cry anymore. I’m still here, so you can breathe easier knowing you will be too.
One of my earliest memories was being surrounded by a dozen strangers, all of whom were apparently my family. I must’ve been at least six years old and exhausted on my tiny legs (something still not uncommon on my bigger legs today), but I know for sure I was excited. These people were seeing me jump for pure joy, trying to ask me questions of what America was like; little me then had been trying to soak them in. Looking at it, thinking about it, we didn’t get what we wanted.
They didn’t get the answer to what America was like; most of them never will. I didn’t truly soak them in; I may never will. The jumping would stop as quickly as it had started, and the strangers, all of whom were apparently my family, were strangers again as soon as my time there had ended. I cried because I had to go back to America, and me and my tiny legs didn’t know why.
If I could have told them then, I’d have answered America was the worst. America was the reason they were strangers. America was the reason I didn’t truly soak them in. America was the reason I had to go.
In the small, one-bedroom apartment where we lived, there was a windowsill where I’d sit and sulk under the starless, city-lit sky. I would know these people were somewhere on the other side of the world. I would wish my life had happened differently. I would wish I had more, or that I understood, and I would feel under my breath the words: life is struggle. I didn’t know if it would ever get easier, so I tried getting stronger, smarter, and sillier, even if I couldn’t see it.
So, if I can confess, if I could have told them now, I’d answer America is okay. America is the reason they won’t be strangers. America is the reason I can truly soak them in. America is the reason I can go.