How do you separate yourself from who you want to be and who you are?
"I have accepted I don't know is a better answer than I know."
Insecure and helpless wrestling within ourselves to become ourselves while conforming to who someone else wants us to be.
It's split me.
You are two people, three people, four people.
How many people will we become before we become the right one?
My children's eyes are watching me.
They see my pain and desire my comfort.
"I will give you the affection I long for."
What does love look like?
It is selfish and selfless.
Love is weak and mild and hungry.
"I want you to take me."
"I need you to want me."
Love is often mistaken for hate.
Hate is often mistaken for love.
Fear is often mistaken for both love and hate.
I open my eyes to see the universe is watching me with her million eyes.
The earth opened up like a blossom before the sun, as it burst into a billion stars and ate Jupiter and its moons.
Still I feel significant.
My children's hands are soft and their eyes are eager.
I mark each one of my mistakes and my children feel them.
I am often afraid, but I try to admit that I am often wrong.
How do I construct an image that someone else could understand?
My mind is full of wonder and uncertainty and longing.
My eyes are tired as I sit listening to a clock tick out the seconds rowing towards the end of day. The noise is as loud as the tapping of my computer keys. I am the only one awake in the house, and I feel a heightened sense of awareness and fear.
Alana Jamison grew up in Oklahoma and currently resides in Western Kansas. Her writing appears in Flash: The International Short Short Story Magazine and The Pitkin Review. She is a graduate of Goddard College's MFA in creative writing program and a student in Fort Hays State University's Transition to Teaching program. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @alanajamison.