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It’s okay to be soft when the rest of the world is rough. It’s okay that you’re easily upset. It’s okay that you get hurt easily. It’s not a bad thing that you feel so much.

It’s okay that your hands shake.

It’s okay that you like dirty mirrors and blurry pictures better than crisp images of yourself because you’re so used to being a ghost. It’s okay to not feel real sometimes.

You don’t have to be pretty when you cry. It’s okay that your mind plays tricks on you so often that you have no idea what you actually look like.

Remind yourself that it is okay to disconnect. It’s okay to take time to recharge.

It’s okay to be alone. It’s okay to be lonely and to be vulnerable.

It’s okay to hate yourself but only if you remind yourself that it is not permanent. It’s okay to be sad as long as you remind yourself that it is not permanent.

As long as you are alive, you are growing, changing. I think the world is changing as much as I am because the trees outside my window don’t look the same as they did yesterday. I don’t think I will ever be the same person I was when I was at my worst.

Know that honesty is the easiest way to heal.

So maybe you don’t hate who you are now. You hate who you were yesterday. Your mind hasn’t caught up with your growth.

Promise me, promise me you’ll remind yourself that it’s okay to be yourself tomorrow.

6:13 p.m. (Note to myself on the bad days)

1. You eat regret for breakfast.
Wash it down with a cup of coffee, two sugars.
It sits heavy in your stomach like the
stones you used to skip across the lake in the summer
with the boy who made you realise how
important chemistry is.
Skin on skin
creating sparks of electricity.
Enough to light up a Christmas tree,
a home made for two,
an entire street,
your eyes.

2. You spent the whole of tenth grade chemistry
trying to figure out how this could be.
You held hands with your lab partner for
one minute to see if you could replicate that
moment of current in your veins.
You’d brush shoulders with strangers,
kiss boys underneath the stairs
but it was never enough to create
goosebumps on your skin.

3. The lunch lady serves you regret for lunch
and she looks at you like she knows.
The pebbles from breakfast still sit
in your stomach so you only eat half of it.
The other half finds home in the trash can.
The stones are heavy.
The stones are piling up.
The stones are sinking you to the bottom of the lake.

4. The lake where you first felt
goosebumps on your heart and he kept it warm
in the inner pocket of his jacket.
He held it as if it would crumble.
By the body of water that had a bed of drowning rocks
he kissed you as if death was lurking behind him.
You dropped all your pebbles and
filled your fists with his shirt instead.
You emptied your mind and
filled it with the colour of his eyes instead.

5. Three years ago
you both swallowed pills of empty promises
and walked away from the lake, from each other.
A road trip of silence back to a home that
reeked of memories that didn’t involve each other.
That same year, the lake dried up
and all that was left was a pile of rocks
covered in fingerprints that would
all lead back to you and him.

6. This morning he wakes up and
searches for the jacket he wore that
particular summer.
He finds it shoved behind football boots and gym bags.
All that is left is a gum wrapper and remnants of a pebble.
He puts the jacket back.
He walks into the kitchen.
He pours himself a bowl of stale cereal.
He eats regret for breakfast, too.
A.Y // nothing fills you up like regret does (via 2wentysixletters)
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