Known

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You all saw a part of me

A part that isn’t well known

A part that is painful, raw, emotional

It’s a story

My story

Woven with rejection and lost

Sprinkled with happiness and satisfaction

Based on a knowledge

Of who I am and want to be

And a lack of knowledge from those closest

A family that doesn’t know

Who can’t know

It isn’t fair

But it’s what it is

That’s just the facts

The harder part comes later

When you see me

Full of contradictions

Not fully known

But fully here

Aware of what I have lost

Aware of what I have gained

Aware of the pain of knowing

You may say courageous, strong, resilient

I may say perseverant

Or I may say nothing

Words don’t do it justice

For I can’t describe it

Except to say

I felt more known today.

Listening vs. Being heard

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I am a listener.

It is certainly one of my gifts. I have learned over the years that people tend to talk if you are simply willing to listen. I have heard stories of triumph and defeat, of depression and joy, of redemption and fear. I have heard it all. I have talked more than one person out of suicide. I have let people cry until they couldn’t any longer. I am a listener. That is who I am.

I love listening. How else would I learn? How else would I get to know someone? I love to show them that I care. It’s easy, and I have advice to offer. I have been through a great deal in my short life, and I have gained some wisdom from it which I will gladly share if it spares someone the same pain.

Today I needed to be heard.

Instead, I listened. I listened to her talk endlessly. I nodded and smiled and thanked her at the end. Isn’t her job to listen? I needed to tell her what was going on. I needed her to understand. She didn’t. She thinks I’m an easy fix. I’m not. There’s a lot going on here, but she has no idea. She may never know.

I just wanted someone to finally understand. She doesn’t yet, but she thinks she does. She didn’t even ask about the most life changing event of my life. She missed the big picture. All because she failed to listen.

Today I listened. Yet again, I listened.