I Hate to Ask

I need to ask you something.

I need to ask you if it’s okay

If you never meet my dad.

Is it okay if we always have separate addresses?

What if my mom just thinks we’re friends?

What if we never send my sister

One Christmas card

With both our faces on it

With my kids and yours

And “Merry Christmas from all of us!”

And snowflakes across the bottom?

What if being with me

Means that I make a space for you

In this closet?

I’m so sorry.

I’m not ashamed of you.

I’m proud of you!

You’re like a miracle

That tumbled into my life

And made me do a backflip

Into a happiness I’ve never conceived of

Before now.

I’m afraid.

I’m afraid that the circle

Of my family

Where my heart was formed

And my anxiety grew legs

And I learned to love one way

And never to question

Isn’t big enough

For our tumbling dance.

Is it okay if I am still,


Still not ready

To force the circle to expand

To welcome my truth

And my heart

And the woman

Who sends a shiver through me?

I am so sorry,

But I can only hide

On this side of the closet door.

It hurts

But please…

Please don’t leave me




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