I learned young
To build a confidence
Maybe even a swagger
In how I carry myself amongst others
A survival mechanism
Created out of necessity

You see
I was raised around dominant men
And I realized early
If I wanted a voice
I had to stand toe to toe
And make them listen

It’s been a part of me for so long
That I don’t even realize it’s on

It’s hard to juggle that
And meet people
It deters and intimidates most
And those it doesn’t are attracted
To the idea of a confident woman
But not the reality of it

I think I scare people when I do drop that guard
I’ve discovered I have no half way
Just on or off with no dimmer switch
And that level of wide open vulnerability
Is uncomfortable to them

I’ve yet to find someone
Who can handle both versions of me
And pretending to be something else
Has never been one of my talents

soul home

many people have crossed my paths
I’m sure for many reasons
some i realize now and some i still wonder why
but regardless
i learned from them all
my god have i learned

to let go of those who poison you
no matter how hard you love them

that walking away isn’t quitting
but simple self-preservation
and there’s no shame in that

sometimes you never really know a person
until it’s 3am and they hate the world
and everyone in it

and then there are other ones
ones where my path didn’t cross
but intertwined
every day I’m around them
those ones teach me to love hard
but laugh harder
especially at yourself
to chase your dreams
even when the thought of failure terrifies you
they understand that fear
because deep down your souls speak the same language
a language of fire and ice – hate and love
dreams and fears – adventures and roots
hope and sadness – balance and overreaching
and an endless need to just be the undefinable wild hearts we are
and when I’m around them
it feels like home
no matter where we are or why

finding those people
that is the best lesson of all
I’m not an optimist
but their presence in my life makes me
dream harder – smile more – and love better