Waiting- By Alexia Jasmene

Waiting…

Always ready, always seeking, always yearning

Waiting for connection that we all deserve

Waiting for someone to see me as me and desire me all in one.

So I put myself out in the verse

From the online dance to the queer spaces of mirth

I get looks of interest,

Conversations emerge

And a connection begins.

Slowly fanning the flames with minutiae of smiles,

Gestures, and feminine wiles,

I begin to foster a hope inside but try to control the growth

A feared of losing control and snuffing out this flame

With exuberance for possibilities

So I breathe, and I smile, and I wait…

Wondering if this is fate or just another face

Connection seems to lock and my despair,

Needing to be quenched,

Latches on to the hope of this interaction

Seeping in doubt and making me falter for a beat,

But I recover…

“Push it back, push it back, push it back

Not this time, not this one, not this girl,

This connection is genuine and she won’t turn,

But baby steps, don’t rush the field

Don’t let her see your brokenness…”

So we continue exchanging laughter filled quips,

And I begin to wonder if I should go all in?

The moment of truth, I tell her I’m trans

“You’re funny!”

I tinge

“Wow I couldn’t tell!”

I sigh

“You’re so gorgeous” 

The fear builds up inside

“I like you but I have a partner”

And I begin to drown in despair

“I don’t ‘do’ dating”

I slowly nod and wince a smile

Trying to hide the years of shame

And me trying to hide

Hide myself from myself

Hide myself from the world

Hide myself from feeling worthy of love

So I move on and wipe it off,

But this happens again,

And again,

And again

And again

And again

And again

And again

And again

And again

Until it feels like there’s no end

That physical connection with another woman I like

Is fleeting once they’re expectations aren't met

Reinforcing my deep shame and hate for the way I was made

Digging out countless nights of a chest so heavy

That I feel crushed by the weight

Of crying and screaming in my hands cursing and trying to change my fate

Fearing abandonment which had become a norm from a childhood born

And not feeling beautiful, allowed to feel good or worthy of love…

So I keep face,

Quickly cracking as each breath escapes the cave of my shame

Seeping onto my mask

So I leave and cry myself to sleep

As my body aches

Aches for this just to stop

Aches for me to finally feel at home in my own body

Aches for someone to love me as me

Aches for expectations to be met

The aches increase and I begin to lose breath

Crying violently like a quake unsettling the dead

Not able to find connection or love

The darkness comes back

And I long for this to end

I long for a way out which I can’t seem to see

(gasp)

I long for a way to set myself free

(faster gasp)

Yet these thoughts won’t leave!

(faster gasp)

Maybe they’re right, maybe I don't deserve life

(faster gasp)…

So I envision my 9 year old self when all this shame began

(slower gasp)

And see her scared and alone, feeling without a home

(slower gasp)

And I approach her and kneel

(slower gasp)

And I tell her it’ll be alright

(slower gasp)

That I’m here and love her

(almost breath)

That I’ll never leave her

(small breath)

That she’s beautiful and deserves to be loved

(medium breath)

So we embrace and I try to calm her with a mantra

(Breathe)

“you deserve to feel good, you deserve to be loved”

(Breathe)

“You deserve to feel good, you deserve to be loved”

(Breathe)

“You deserve to feel good, you deserve to be loved”

(Slow Breath)

“You are beautiful, trans IS beautiful”

And then we smile

And she disappears for awhile

Always there and usually scared,

But fine for now…

So I guess I’ll keep on waiting somehow

Waiting for someone who just sees me

That isn’t hung up on social normalcy

That isn’t taken and is in a place to try

Try to be vulnerable and connect…

So I’ll keep waiting,

But maybe, I’m just waiting for me.