Sometimes you come at night while I’m trying to slow down. When I’m trying to forget you, and I cry for protection but no one can hear me.

No one can hear me.

No. Stop. No.

Things I can’t say out loud or loudly enough or without a panic attack.

It seems unfair my day was spent with you, pieces of memory moving in and out, dragging tears with them as they smack me in the face while I’m driving, doing dishes, trying to fall asleep.

“No,” I said in therapy and immediately broke down.

Please stop, I imagine myself saying but watch in horror as I lose my voice.

Please stop, I tell myself. I can’t live here anymore, screaming, at deaf people.

I am cold and shaky and frightened and ashamed and guilty and sad, sad, sad.

You win the battle, I can’t bear it any more.

“No.” Little-me says. “Stay in the fight.” Little-me doesn’t know I’m worthless and undeserving of life and love.

Little-me wants needs mama bear protection. We collide when I can’t protect her and you are here. I am defenseless, I let her down.

I am drifting…

Off to sleep, but you are there. I jolt awake and I need to feel safe.

But I can’t say NO loud enough and so we stay awake, scared that this is it. It will always be like this.

Please, stop.

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