It is the hardest thing to master. I hold on to everything with tightly clasped palms, afraid to let the rancid cockroach within them fly free. I cannot forgive them for what they did, no matter how long I berate myself or force myself, this round peg into the square hole of their choosing. I cannot accept what they did and lay it down on the road. I cannot unburden myself so easily. I hide behind fighting for the freedom of others, but what of myself? Trapped here? Sliding down a one way street to only one outcome.

I don’t know how to win this fight, I don’t know how to use my spirituality (what remains) or my knowledge to fight off this demon. I am an army of one, standing solitary against an angry hoarde.

Perhaps it was always supposed to come down to this.

“The only reason we don’t open our hearts and minds to other people is that they trigger confusion in us that we don’t feel brave enough or sane enough to deal with. To the degree that we look clearly and compassionately at ourselves, we feel confident and fearless about looking into someone else’s eyes.”

-Pema Chodron