I remember when I first became aware that I was gaining weight and my heart started pumping as if soon, it will betray me: I was seven.
I remember the time I wanted to become a ballerina, a teacher, a lawyer, an author, a poet that I ended up feeling so much pressure from life: I was 10.
I remember when my dad died, I was heartbroken, devastated, lost, tempted, angry, alone: I was 12.
I remember being the new girl, friendless, sitting alone at a lunch table for four, ignorant, lonely: I was 14.
I remember feeling terrified of tomorrow, pressured by life, hungry for to-do lists: I was 16.
I remember being consistently lost in context of what I wanna believe in and what the world has for me, inevitably challenged by the earth, by the people around me and by the emotions swimming in my head and in my heart: I was 17.
I remember falling backwards, being trapped in my own stories, I remember crying: I was 18.
I remember wanting to be in love, being in love. I remember losing him, regretting that I lost him, crying because it was never something to cry about in the first place. I remember how it felt to hold on to something that was never going to be mine in the end: I was 20.
I remember being betrayed, lied to, used, and made fun of, I remember when I stopped trusting people, I remember the words, the pretense, the ending: I was 21.
I remember the assault, the feeling of being robbed by someone you trusted so much, I remember how I wanted to run away, how my body trembled out of fear. I remember being disgusted just by hearing his name, just by seeing his face, I remember wanting him dead. I remember my anger boiling from the very core of my body, I remember asking why me, I remember shame: I was 22.
I remember pain, I remember heartaches, I remember the times I walked home alone, I remember when having one person in your life means home. I remember being touched by the God reminding me that I am able, that I can, that I am worthy. I remember recovering, praying, surviving, fighting, believing, I remember to pause: Now.
I remember to stay still and admire the real beauty of what life has for me. That for a very long time, it's just there. The honesty of life, the wonders of His creation, the loving warmth of the sun, the chilly wind of December, they are all just there waiting for me to turn around and stare.
We all deserve to pause and breathe.
We all deserve to live.