‘Conflicted’: A poem to my parents who have passed away

I spend all my time, pretending I’m fine

While stuck in the middle of a battle

with my mind

I can’t comprehend the complexity of this grief built up inside of me

The loss that haunts me

Loneliness, cuddled up right beside me

This emptiness I try to fill with distractions

Subtracting myself

I contemplated hard on that.

The stress I added to myself

Questioning my self-worth

I was ashamed of that

Hid behind glasses of Coke and Henny

Crying beneath the flashing light

Dancing with my head down

My tears helped soak the club floors

Mixing with mistakes spilled over the rim

Sanity tiptoed near the edge

It’s tough, to navigate through the trenches

of this anger consuming me

The guilt of feeling helpless

The fear of failure

The time lost to make amends

To give the love that was always there

but never felt

The hate for all the trauma given

Forgiveness for all that we’ve experienced

I blamed you and still do

but to accept that you were hurting too

I’m conflicted

After loving you, then hating you

Losing you, and missing you

For everything you put me through

I can’t hold it against you

Now I only want to hold you

in my arms one last time

To hear your voice over the phone

and know that everything will be OK

I pray to you every day

In hopes I reach an Angel’s ear

To feel the chills of the wind

so I know your spirit is always near

Parental bonds, transcends planes

It stands the test of time

All those times I stayed up late nights

Wondering if you cared

The drugs took your mind

The state took your child

The system took my parents

My grandma saved my life

I grew to understand, yours needed

saving too

I grew to understand, you were drowning too

Suffocating beneath the weight of this world we’ve been given

I’m conflicted

Hearing of the days when you chose to run away

but remembering some days when you chose to stay

Knowing there were good times

and blocking out the bad

It left me torn

Dissociating, destroying my memory

It’s insane

How this pain has changed me

Carelessly cold hearted

Numb on the inside smiles on the outside

I’m struggling with anxiety,

Struggling to make connections

To maintain relationships.

It’s trippy.

It trips me up when people ask am I OK?

What am I supposed to say?

The truth?

That I cry myself to sleep at night

I wake up in tears early mornings

That I thought about ending my life today

but I still have class tomorrow

The truth?

That I fell apart before I walked into this room

but quickly pulled myself together

Or that I lost passion for my art

I started questioning my dreams

I think the world would be better

Without my contributions to society

I could never give

The truth?

They’d medicate me and lock me away

If I said all the things I really wanted to say

I’m conflicted

To be honest

to keep living

to be distant

to understand the reason,

God chose you and called you home

And left me alone

To be left alone is all I ever ask for now

But to crave the love

To see the hope

make plans for months to come

To have wishes coming true before my eyes

I’ve worked hard to become something

A rose that grew from nothing

I can’t give up on her

My inner child calling out for help

I’m helping her, remember who she is

Remember how much she’s grown

Everything she’s overcome

All the troubles that I shoulder

I told her,

You have to love yourself first

The turmoil inside your heart

The storm inside your soul

Don’t be conflicted

For those emotions that are contradicting

They are valid

They are depicting your conviction

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