my mama had dreams…

she had dreams that were drenched in art and tasted like adventure

i didn't know it
for most of my growing up…
but my mama had dreams.
dreams that weren't of ring shapes and dress colors.
she had dreams that were drenched in art
and tasted like adventure…
ones that felt like being kissed
until her heart burst…
ones that opened up her whole soul
like a wildflower on fire.
but i didn't know it.
i didn't know it because she tucked them away
in pretty memory boxes
and hid them in tattered journals that
she pushed aside for perfectly-scripted scrapbooks,
and she buried all her burning desires under
yes ma'ams and sunday dresses
and sweet, supportive smiles,
while any part of her that ever maybe might
could've known that she mattered…
by herself, for herself,
and belonging. to. herself.
suffocated quietly under the white noise
of all those voices that had told her that
all that really mattered
was that she had been chosen… by him.

and when i started to see that inside of her
was a whole other woman that she ached to be…
i knew i couldn't go through my life aching for the me
i'd never be, in that same way.

so all i've ever wanted… is to know that i matter.
by myself. for myself. and belonging to myself.
chosen by no one, but me.

– butterflies rising