It’s Wednesday, which means we are continuing the journey into young TK’s mind and how she came to understand herself. While today’s poem was not written with a name (I’ll give it one here), it is one of my better ones. Written on April 26th, 2004, when I was 14-years-old, this poem marks a very important step in my overall view of myself.
Inside, I feel incomplete.
There is something missing.
There us a closed door in need of opening.
There is a person I have yet to meet.
There is a place I have let to see.
So many paths,
Sine right, and
so many wrong.
Which one is right for me?
Which one will lead me to success?
Which one will lead me to failure?
If I stay where I am, will I ever be satisfied?
Inside I am lonely.
Inside I am crowded.
Inside I understand.
Inside I know nothing.
Somewhere inside I am hiding.
Waiting for me to find me.
I am found and I am lost.
How am I to sort this all out?
Perhaps it seems odd to call this poem ‘Understanding.’ The author seems to be facing a great amount of confusion. Since I am an older and wiser version of this little writer, I can tell you that is not the case. What this poem really shows is how young TK was starting to recognize the contradictions in her life. My life was fully of people who cared, and yet I felt lonely. I knew and possessed so much, and yet I felt like I had nothing. These contradictions did not make sense to me, but I knew them for the mystery they were.
I was incomplete because I was a mystery to myself. Up until this point in my life, I followed others. Whatever my parents and teachers told me I should be, is what I strives to become. Through this poem, we see the beginnings of change in that drive. Notice the following sentence.
Which one is right for me?
In discussing what path I should take in life,I did not simply ask which was right and which was wrong, as if trying to decipher a moral code handed down by the adults in my life. This was different. I was asking myself which paths were right or wrong for me. Just because a person found success down one path did not mean I would also find success there. Just because one person found something to be wrong for them, did not mean it would also be wrong for me.
Just like that, I started to think about where my own dreams could be found. While I hadn’t figured everything out, yet, I was beginning to understand that my dreams might not line up with the dreams others had for me. That realization would prove to be a double edged sword. Finding myself would prove joyous, but realizing my dreams didn’t fit with what everyone wanted would bring considerable sadness.
Years would pass before I understood I didn’t have to live up to everyone else’s dreams for me in order to be happy.