By now we’re old friends.
I know your moves, just as you know mine. I feel your heart race, your breath quicken. There you are, looking wildly for an exit. There you are, closing your eyes to block out the threat. There you are, fists up ready to fight.
We start our dance, Trauma. I make myself small. I can be very still. I curl up on the floor at your feet and wait. I make myself quiet. You don’t like questions. Sometimes you don’t like any words at all. I wait for the moment you retreat. I wait for the moment you leave space for laughter, for love.
You are so watchful, so wary. What are you scared of, Trauma? What can possibly threaten you in this house of easy laughter, soft voices, even tempers?
We get along best when I remember to thank you, when I find a way to be grateful for the hard lessons you teach me every day about presence and acceptance. For the invitation you offer to grow in patience and empathy. For the challenge you issue to persevere. To hope. For your demands. More love. Full commitment.
I think about how I greet old friends. Warmly. Familiarly. In the expectation that our time together will comfort and sustain. You’ve left for a little while this afternoon, but I know you will be back soon.
I will smile when I say hello.
Today’s format was inspired by Anna Gratz Cockerville’s wonderful series of Letters for this month’s Slice Challenge.