At 16, fresh out of High School the future did not seem very secure or promising to me. I was leaving the place I had called home for the last 5 years (almost 6) and friends who had welcomed my weirdness and showed me love because of it.

While most of them were filling out college applications and studying for the S.A.T’s, my dream after graduating, was to meet a respectable Rasta man, get married and live in a cabin by the sea.

I was due to return to my home, a small island in the Caribbean, The Commonwealth of Dominica, which I had left at 11 years old. Everything would be different, everyone I knew had grown and surely as life had happened for me; it had for them.

Saying goodbye is never easy, but coming home to the fresh air, endless greenery, it strangely cleansed and comforted the missing that deeply plagued my bittersweet heart. It inspired me, along with the new sadness I had come to possess; words came with ease and piled on top of each other, there was never enough paper or ink.

I feared sharing as I had no confidence in my abilities or self-worth. I really didn’t know what I was any good at and hid brilliantly in the shadows of anxiety. A few months shy of 17, I had resigned at living to merely exist and soon after my first heartbreak, also to love.

I’d grown to resemble my mother, for some, it was a hard thing to face as for me it was a hard thing to hear. Every time they said her name, I felt a sharp cut, deep inside of me. She was so beautiful, internally and externally, the nearest I have ever seen to perfection. And I deemed myself, a mockery of her memory, neither beautiful nor worthy of being called her daughter.

I knew I could never be like her, I had already been so many other varieties of wrong, I was already ruined and at the time there was nothing to soothe this feeling. It burned within me, this low, steady fire where you stood chained and watched the few memories you recall as a child set aflame.

Why was I made to resemble someone I could never own up to be? Why wasn’t she here to tell me everything would be okay? Why did He take her away? The never ending why’s, how greatly they plague.

It took me a long time to come to terms with many things, I was only 6 when she died. There are days when I’m okay and there are days when I feel like my heart has separated from my chest and she’s the only one who knows how to put me back together. I’ve learned to just be, not resist it… Write, when I’m able and most importantly, take it day by day. Certainly working on the task of loving who I am, embracing the best part of me, which I’ve realized is her and hoping, praying that these words, my blanket of love, she gleefully approves as my guardian angel.

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