I never got to live my childhood.
I wake up with pain throbbing in my
throat and every memory of abuse
lumps up on my skin. I walk with cemented
memories of my trauma where a child
was not living, but surviving with
taps open in his bathroom to numb
his voices of help. My childhood was
a lie, a war where the bullets of pain
crossed through my heart like balloons
floating in the sky. My hands have the
bruises of playground where I was
pushed to stay for questioning
masculinity. When your mother isn’t
proud of your choices as a child, you try
harder to win her back even it comes at
a cost to leave your truth in a locker.
The voices of my childhood scream at
me today, to go hug that child who was
always wanting to bid goodbye. The child,
who survived his own death from the hands
of society. Today, I eat my childhood trauma
in chunks to make myself believe
I have always been loved. I surround this
bubble around me, to not let my past
question my existence. But when does the
past ends, and when do I begin to live?
As a child, when I cried, my mother accused
me for my own sadness, ‘You always find
another wound to bleed’. But ma, when
has ever anyone put a bandage on my
wounds? How do I let her believe that
I am losing out on time, and I don’t know
if I will wake up the next day. So let me
hold that Barbie and go out wearing kajal
and unlock the self you grew in your womb?
I was always an abandoned watch, that
stuck to a time loop. Today I question
every memory of my childhood, asking
if I ever got to live happily? How did I
come so far? Will I ever go home?
Mother, rebirth me, give me my childhood
back. I don’t deserve the broken child
who was locked in a room with the chains
of masculinity. Mother, give me my self
back, for I will never forgive the places
you never bandaged me.
How does one survive with the child who fought a war with his silence?
Harshit, running around the corpse of his childhood.
Harshit Jalan is a 21-year-old Journalism student, who writes poems and articles on gender and queer representation. You can find Harshit on Instagram @harshitbreathingpoetry__