By, Leselie McDonald
Hey, talk to me, I swear I’ll listen; I won’t judge or condemn you. If I could, I’ll help you overcome your demons if only with this open letter, because you know you got to do better.
I was once where you are, calloused, and bitter, afraid to be truly seen because life’s sting had crippled my identity, stolen my vision of happiness and left me wondering, searching for likeness in the eyes of the hopeless. Broken was a friend of mine, choking off words never spoken because I felt no one ever truly cared about me! “THE REAL ME!” “THE ME” that your words hurt, “THE ME” that can see your eyes flirt with judgment because my shoes ain’t new, my clothes are dirty, and my stomach rumbles with the pain of hunger. “THE ME” that loves poetry and soft spoken songs. “THE ME” that is different from “you,” different than “U.” “THE ME” that don’t mind crying, don’t mind trying whenever encouraged. “THE ME” that craves to be accepted for just “Me” and no other. “THE ME” you never see, lest your mind come undo, “THE ME” you never hear if your heart’s not true. That “ME,” the real “ME” that only wants to surface…and just be.
I fell in love once, with my eyes open and my heart closed. I started pretending from the beginning because love for me was a vision rather than a feeling. It must have happened early on, I mean, I had put on this face while you were still laughing at me, passing me around like fallin leaves. I couldn’t fly when you pushed me. I was hardly steady, barely ready, yet enamored with your attention…I couldn’t breathe, I couldn’t see my dreams because I was buried in your existence, forgetting “ME!” “THE REAL ME,” “THE ME” that loves is a reality and life is its song. The “ME” that can feel. The “ME” that is drunk with hope and wonderment. The “ME” within and not without. The “ME” that calculates the possibilities one rose petal at a time. The “ME” that dances in the rain, chances in the name of honesty, chivalry, and quite naturally beauty. The “ME” that craves love without conditions, like faith in the wind suspended. The “ME” you can only see when your mind’s undo, the “ME” you can hear when your hearts in tune. That “ME,” “THE REAL ME,” that only wants to surface…and just be!
My choices came when I was just as young as you. Living in a world with uncomfortable noise, torn between my needs and wants. Some days, I feel, my choice was made for me, like my environment was sketched and dressed to fit for me. Am I a product or the process? Tempted by the opinion or complete, ready for market in accordance with your idea of me, but the “REAL ME” disagrees. “THE ME” that knows reason for the contrary and finds solace in venting. “THE ME” that has faith regardless of circumstance. “THE ME” that knows—MY LIFE MATTERS despite the color of my skin, the color of my uniform, or the way I communicate. “THE ME” that makes history by creating possibilities from nothing more than a dream. “THE ME” that outlasts adversity, soars past limits and restrictions because this “ME” has a vision. “THIS ME” has a dream of living bigger. “THIS ME” I know. “THIS ME” I control, rather than the obstacles purposed to define “me.” “THE REAL ME,” “THE ME” that needs an audience with a true heart and an open mind. “THE ME” that breaks the silence, finally because someone’s willing to listen.
“THIS ME,” I truly can say is thankful to have been in your presence. “THIS ME” I know will go from be to being, “THIS ME” will gladly open up and…Talk to you as you listen; invite you less judgment and condemnation, accept the help you offer despite my demons, give you my attention if only through this open letter, because I do know…that I got to do better!!!