Ashen shoes

When I was younger, I fought battles silently. I nursed my own wounds and covered my own scars. I was thrown inside a war zone without any clue or choice. I thought the world had abandoned me (and at that time, they probably did).  I carried on –  stepped on bombs every once in a while; tiptoed on broken glass; slept with a small pig key chain flashlight. I didn’t fake a smile. I never did. It never even crossed my mind to fake a smile when I was just trying too hard to survive. I was building walls; digging out tunnels; seeking out freedom and making friends with invisibility cloaks. In another world – the social world, my peers were busy acing tests, looking out into their future and mocking others. I was invisible most of the time except for those few moments when I hogged the limelight for my failed scores, obvious lack of nutrients, my humongous second hand corn-white uniforms, my grey-ashen shoes, and my unpaid school bills. Oh! I had good days too – recess with friends, passing the school paper audition et cetera. But going back to the bigger reality always blurred everything. It sucked everything (from the taunts to the rainbows) like a big vortex and produced a dark blended mush of negativity. And if I could only travel back in time, I’d tell myself to look at the sky more often. I’d hug my little self and point out that other peoples’ shoes are not as black as I think they are. But more than that, I’d probably give myself some cheese and warm bread and leave a note that says, “You’re doing great! You’ll be fine. I love you~” イサベラ

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