How did I shrink? A five foot five golden skinned woman who could carry the world. How did I shrink? A loud mouthed lion, a Medusa to modern men, a fearless dancer. How did I shrink? How did I let you take my pride from me, my voice from me, my strength from me, my peace from me? I traded in my Amazonian armor for the black and broken tortoise shell, where you kept me. My shoulders bent and curved, my body left to wither, I slept but I never rested.
How did I shrink? I was silent, I was good, I was careful to never leave blood on the eggshells you laid out for me to walk on. How did I shrink? I waited days, months, years, for the darkness to turn into something lighter. I waited for it to creep out of you forever, but in turn it just crept into me and I became small.
How did I grow? I said no, I prayed, I cried. I lifted my head for the first time and looked at my reflection in the mirror. I trusted myself, and I let all the broken pieces break away, leaving only the vulnerable parts that would regrow. I shut out your voice, and turned up my own, I screamed. My vision came back, my hair came back, my skin and bones healed fresh. My shoulders straightened and I could one again hear my own footsteps on the ground. Resilient like a dandelion, I grew back into my former self. Deeply rooted in the past grow the flowers of the future, and they are tall.