why people be mad at me sometimes
they ask me to remember
but they want me to remember
and i keep remembering mine
Staying grounded requires remembering your own voice. For many many seasons of my life, I felt as if more legitimate "others" stood whispering in my ears. Telling me their stories about why I should do things a certain way, see circumstances from a particular point of view. I knew they were just opinions borne of their experiences in the world--their values, biases, tastes, fears.
I wasn't strong enough to drown them out and consistently trust my own truths.
Clifton’s poem reminded me of those times in my life when I contorted myself to fit into someone else's good graces, or earn a nod, or avoid raised brows or critical responses. Times when I turned against what I preferred, what comforted me, what made me feel whole, what I knew in my soul.
Now it helps me to envision my soul as a strong and powerful warrior buried in my belly going absolutely ballistic when ignored. A warrior who doesn't care if people get mad at me.
Sometimes it's a challenge, but if I don't listen to me, who else will?