by Michelle Hynes

I need you to know… That I care. That I hurt. That I didn’t mean to hurt you.

It’s hard to write today, from this place of distraction. This pen, or that one? The purple sparkly marker will have to do. It moves across the page so smoothly. Who cares, if it’s hard to read later?

I need you to know that showing up means I love you. My hair might be a mess, and I can’t find my shoes or my keys. But here I am. Do you want some tea?

Sometimes showing up is the best I can do. I might be ill-equipped or under-prepared. I’m not proud of that. But here I am.

Here I am. I need you to know that the best I have right now might not be my best. Maybe tomorrow I will be sparkly and bright and my shirt will match my socks. Today is not that day.

Here I am. I need you to know that I care about being here, now, with you … even if I don’t know what to say. Let’s sit a while. Have some tea. Maybe you will hear all I need you to know. What I need you to know. I need you to know. I know I need you. I need you to know.

I don’t know what to do with this minute, this time, this space. The end.

I don’t want to know what you think. Honestly, thanks for offering — But I just want to sit here a while with what I think. There are too many other voices, some days. I just want to hear my own. Selfish? Sure, maybe. But have you ever craved the deep quiet of no voices? This is how the forest feels to me, or the ocean — just the murmur of leaves, the rhythm of waves, alone with the soft sounds of nature in my ears and under my feet. I don’t want to know. Just listen.