When I lay in bed at night, I wonder, I think about the day, my life.
I don't know where I'm going, where I'm headed, but I wish I wasn't.
I curl up into bed, cover myself in cozy blankets, bury my head under my familiar pillow.
Sometimes I clutch another tightly to my chest, grit my teeth and fight back those familiar tears, the aching in my chest.
More often though, I can't keep it in. I break, the strength inside me shatters. The aching becomes unbearable, my chest throbs and burns until I want to shout, and the tears begin to flow. I'm thankful for that pillow, for the quiet of the night. I fear most that I will be exposed, that someone will discover me in this weakened state.
Another part of me wishes I would be stumbled upon, to be comforted, a warm body clutched against mine. Sadly, I know that it will not help, I can't burden others with my pain, I've hurt too many before. I won't be able to contain the shame and the best intentions in the world will not be able to stop the pain and tears.
None of that matters though, because the comforting never comes, and I drift into the night to fight my demons.
Many things have improved, I've come so very far from that time, but there's still something missing.
It's not love nor is it unhappiness, it's just this shadow that lurks within. It won't let me become settled, keeps me up when I try to sleep. I wish I could describe it, define it, but I can not. It's just a presence that I can't seem to shake off.
Sometimes I'm happy, many times I am not. I try to put on a smile and a happy face. I try to help those around me, give them what I can. At times this feels detrimental, but it's me and I don't want that to change.
I believe in the good that lies within everyone, I believe everyone deserves a second chance, an opportunity. Perhaps I can provide it. I don't know if this wards off this ever-present shadow, sometimes it seems to make me more aware of it.
I see folks that are happy and it makes me smile, gives me hope that one day I can be in a similar place.
For the most part, my needs are met. I have people to care about, to care for, which is what makes me happiest of all. When I'm able to give others what I want so very badly, it dulls that ache.
This shadow though, I wish I could shake it, move forward, and clear the fog before my eyes.