I am not brave. I am not strong. I try to be brave. I try to keep my head up and my eyes up and not to be the small, weak, scared kid hunched in a corner…I can not do it. I can not be brave. I can not block them out. I can not even look at them many days. But I try. I try to keep my head and my eyes up and I try to make myself be strong there. And sometimes….sometimes I am. But then I make it home and I collapse my walls. And I spend most evenings in agony. I have been told so many times not to dwell on it, that its over. But it isn’t because it doesn’t start until then. It isn’t because until I get home I haven’t STARTED dealing with that pain because at school I lock it away until I am home and it is safe to be weak. But it isn’t there. I am not allowed to be weak there either. I am not allowed to be in pain because then when, as usual, someone yells in my family. So I curl up in a ball. And I hide inside myself. And I block my pain out. I always have. And I am so scared that I always will…that I will never be able to let myself be weak for a minute. Some days I…I just want someone to hold onto me and not let me go. I just want someone to tell me that I can be weak, that I am allowed to hurt and that that doesn’t make me less than people, that I’m going to be OK. I don’t have that…I never have. I have long since accepted that fact. But sometimes…sometimes I want to be the little kid curled up in my moms lap with my head on her shoulder. Sometimes I just want to be a little kid again. Sometimes I want to close my eyes and be back when I was at least a bit free, when at least some small part of me wasn’t in so much hurt so much of the time. I tell myself every single day that I will be ok. I curl up into a ball and hold myself when I am in pain and fighting to calm down. But it isn’t the same as knowing someone actually cares. It just isn’t. Because how am I to know the whole world isn’t like this…how am I supposed to have faith that someday it might get better…that someday I might be able to rest.