I… uh… where do I weep for my inner child?

it’s here. the day it never crossed my mind would come
not that I ever think of the future as something tangible,
but that day I hadn’t even conceived
has come

it feels… like nothing… sea level… snow level…
snowflake after snowflake – once a clear symbol of happiness and hope –
fall one after another and land softly on the lethargic concrete,
blanketing the crimson roofs in 10-centimetre cold emptiness

it didn’t feel like the downward-spiralling climax I’d have imagined, if ever asked to
it didn’t feel like… anything
that’s the worst part

you’d think I’d at least be able to grieve the disappearance of that final sign of
inner childhood
grieve and let the knot of pain stuck in my throat claw its way out into a final screeching release
to mark the grave of the one I’ve now lost forever
mark it in time and space, tie it to a specific moment and let it go forever

but there’s no grave
just falling snow
and lethargy beneath it

no grave for me to come back to,
to revisit distant memories of innocence and childlike wonder,
no grave to scream my regrets at,
to mark the moment in time when time stood still for the old me

I’ve become but a wandering gaunt shadow of doubts, anxieties and regrets
in search of a resting place
where I can crawl into a ball and regret the loss of endearing youth

it’s here. the day it never crossed my mind would come

the day when seeing falling snow brought me no more joy, nor respite, nor reprieve
just

falling snow

– Patricia

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Second childhood. Or: Time capsule for my inner child

24 years young.
They ask me how I am and I answer: “I am but 24 years young.”
Living out my second childhood with the inner child
who is unlearning all the unhealthy coping mechanisms and internalized toxic behaviours
from my first childhood,
and learning to exist imperfectly,
living for the little things in life:
the went-sledding-and-laughter-rumbled-from-my-belly-button-to-the-tip-of-my-toes-and-then-all-the-way-up-to-my-crow’s-feet-when-I-fell-off-the-sled moments;
the it’s-foggy-outside-and-the-roads-are-empty-so-we-can-take-eerie-photos-in-the-middle-of-the-road-and-not-worry-about-passing-cars moments;
the watched-grandpa-fill-seltzer-bottles-with-soda-in-his-now-closed-soda-shop moments;
the it’s-the-last-day-of-2021-and-the-bright-blue-sky-is-ablaze-with-pink-orange-and-yellow-cotton-candy-clouds-so-let’s-climb-up-the-ladder-near-our-grandparents’-attic-where-they-used-to-store-hay-when-we-were-kids-to-get-a-better-view moments;
the went-for-a-walk-in-the-forest-the-day-after-New-Year’s-Eve-and-took-a-photo-of-Maya’s-cute-paw-prints-in-the-snow moments;
the had-a-spontaneous-snowball-fight-like-there’s-no-tomorrow-and-ended-up-with-bruised-butts-shins-and-knees-but-I’ve-never-felt-so-alive-in-years moments;
the let’s-tease-each-other-and-laugh-wholeheartedly-in-grandma’s-dimly-lit-room-while-she-knits-us-jumpers-and-hums-her-favourite-songs moments.

So when they ask me how I am, I answer:
I am 24 years young.
And not a day too old.

– Patricia

Petition to plain Jane

Subject: WHAT ARE YOU DOING WITH YOUR LIFE ALL IN SHAMBLES

Petition to plain Jane over there with the wounded inner child

To whom it may concern,
(you know very well who you are)

It has unfashionably late come to my attention
That the precarious conditions in which plain Jane’s inner child has grown
Are, simply put, outrageous.

23 years of
self-scrutiny,
self-hatred and
feelings of personal inadequacy
with no ounce of self-compassion
while your inner child cowers away in the least tainted corner of your mind,
suffering through your self-victimization episodes
—no matter how seemingly valid—
have been more than enough.

I, the undersigned,
therefore request immediate measures be taken
to ensure the safety of the aforementioned child.

Should necessary measures fail to be immediately implemented,
I reserve the right to file a complaint with the child protective services.

Signed,
Get yourself together already before you turn into a Jane Doe
Plain and simple
Jane