A Poem: Will They Like Me?

I see you walking into your first day of second grade. A new school.

“Will they like me?”, you ask.

I’m watching you busy yourself.

You’re organizing your desk. Distracting yourself from the intense vulnerability of a new situation.

You don’t know that every other child is asking themselves the same question. You don’t know yet that we all beg for unconditional love.

And again, there you are.

The first day of seventh grade. I see you adjusting your oversized shirt.

“Will they like me?”, you ask.

You watch the other girls being praised for their new womanly shape. You yearn for and dread the day you too will be noticed in that way.

“Will they like me?”, you ask

As you move into your first college apartment.

A thousand miles away from family.

A thousand miles away from home.

You put on your running shoes and think, “if I can get another run in today, maybe they’ll like me.”

And yesterday, for the first time, you asked…

“Do I like me?”

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