When I feel my presence causing friction, my reflex is to freeze and fold up.

Draw back.



Always trying to avoid those moments


when my opinions scrape up against those who disagree.

When my passion gets the best of me, and turns to pride.

When my loyalty divides instead of builds.

When I care too much about a thing….

that I blindly become the toxic one.

When my observations are too real,

and feel like a threat.

When my judgements are too harsh,

and my advice is tough to hear.

When my laugh is too loud,

my jokes fall flat,

and my intent is not delivered in the way I’d hoped.

Zip up. Pull back. Withdraw.

But what about when my love is pure?

Bright and flowing with ease?

When my contentedness draws others into its safe embrace?

When my sincerity travels

all the way past the turbulence of my selfishness and self-doubt,

and invites someone else in from the cold?

When my words resonate with those who bear the same scars,

and they cause a collective courage

to rise up together and scream,

“ME TOO!”?

When my intentions are right?

When my creativity electric?

When my gifts radiate fluidly,

and find their perfect place to land?

In my own, personal lane.

When I am serving my purpose?

When I catch the sparkle in my own eye?

When my connection to those around me swells with shared truths and trust,

and we find ourselves within the same body?

Swaying gratefully,

in rhythm and harmony.

Nevertheless, its not long before I feel it rolling in.

Like animals that sense the storm long before it shows itself.

The internal warning bells of disapproval and judgement approaching.

The gift of feeling how you REALLY feel without saying a word,

because Ive become fluent in the language of all that is left unspoken.

For survival.

So, I jump to apologize

and politely excuse myself.

Swallow whats actually best for me,

like a gulp from a cup of nails.

It’s my habit to hide

from the bright light of recognition,

and make accommodations for you.

The art of enjoying

the warmth of approval

while staying wary

of overstaying my welcome…

and feeling the burn that inevitably turns on me.


Maybe its time to lay down that double edged sword…

and just be.

Let go of the breath

I have been holding in for decades,

just to see what it feels like to let go.


Sprawl out and roll around

in all that makes me,


To fill up seats, rooms and hearts without apologies.

Expecting to make a full recovery

from this “disease to please.”

Personal pandemic.