I've been working so hard at staying present
and even harder at making you think
I am

Lying about how often I don't remember
How often Monday night turns to Thursday morning
How often I bite the inside of my cheek
Pinch myself
Tap my foot on the ground
Clawing at internal consciousness

I hope you don't notice how often I leave conversations
How many times I pull the car over because
I don't drive yet
My flip answers aren't due to arrogance or being an asshole
Rather utter confusion
What were we talking about?

I hope you know that I would do anything to make this easier for you

I shake my head and look down to the right
My therapist told me so
I shake my head like I'm trying to clear blurring vision
A last ditch attempt to retain the self I call myself

It's like
The moment you light up a cigarette three years after you quit
Or spiking a vein after 6 months clean
Utter relief followed by latent regret

Truth is
It's hard to be out here

But I'm sorry

I'm sorry you came home today
To a home health care nurse looking concerned
Looking at
Your 35 year old partner in a ball on the couch
Hands over his head, duck and cover

I'm sorry, I'm sorry
Please don't

I'm sorry you have to say my name with a question mark

I'm sorry I'm not wood or steel or iron
But water

And I will keep biting my cheek
And lying
And I will scream

I'm sorry

I will tie myself together like we're
Prisoners tied the mast of a pirate ship
Back to back

Hold on boys,
We're taking on water
Snakes in the grass beneath our feet, rain in the clouds above
Some moments last forever, but some flare out with love, love, love