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Moving Back Home

Homegirl moves back home after separating from her husband. She watches people while smoking a cigarette.

Three university students walk by, snickering about how they just took a huge hit from a bong. A group of 10-year-olds happily climb the poles of a nearby railing. A young teen hipster stares dreamily at his doe-eyed girlfriend as they board the train.

Sitting on my apartment stoop, I stare at everyone as I take another puff of a cigarette, mumbling to myself, “They’re all so fucking carefree.” I don’t know any of these people, but I’m jealous. I envy their innocence. I envy their pure joy. I almost hate them, but I don’t hate them. They are the lucky ones, and life just didn’t happen to them yet. I toss my cigarette butt into an open crack in the sidewalk and steadily watch as it sizzles out.

I’m on the path of regaining my independence. My therapist tells me, “It seems like you come from a long line of female caretakers,” which may seem like a positive thing to say, but she might as well be saying, “Beyotch, you come from a long line of weak women who do anything for men.” It’s truly a curse.

Every time it feels like I’m starting to get my shit together, I end up meeting the “man of my dreams” and throw all that potential away. It’s as if I find it much easier to cater to a man than actually facing my own problems and growing myself. It’s horrible–and to know that this quality is programmed in almost every fiber of my being, it is even more of a struggle.

Falling in love with a man should be a wonderful thing, but it is so draining when you fall for a psychopath. One moment can be like a picturesque movie scene. Handsome man sweeps woman off her feet with her favorite chocolates, a candlelit dinner and a beautiful sunrise. A couple days later, it can be like you’re living in a dark and crazy nightmare. Pouring a can of soda all over the dashboard of your car, shouting insults and smashing glass jars onto the floor. Other moments can seem so ridiculous upon reflection, even comical and unreal. Becoming so infuriated that he beats up the Christmas tree *powpow*, jumping out of the car in the middle of the freeway, or breaking your flip flops with his teeth like some manic animal.

I need to break the cycle. I want to be strong. I want to be truly happy. I want my innocence back.

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