To be honest,
You scared me.
You were the perfect Mormon example.
You were everything I wanted to be,
Everything I — needed to be.
So I chose to walk behind you,
Hoping you’d show me the way.
Show me how to be a good Mormon,
How to be a good heterosexual girl.
How to be good at all. . .
I intently listened as you discussed boys,
Latching on to every word you used,
Every way you enjoyed their attention.
I imagined that feeling,
What was it like?
Over and over again.
Willing it to be real as you spoke,
As I listened to your adolescent exploration,
The ones I would never have a version of.
As I helped you with “boy troubles,”
I could only imagine caring what boys thought!
I had never considered how a boy felt about:
Truly anything about me.
It was difficult to help you,
Coming at an angle of no understanding,
With zero experience in any way.
But I tried very hard.
And if I do say so myself —
I gave you pretty good advice!
Well, I certainly tried to give you good advice,
Tried to care about the boys you were speaking about,
Always attempting to find the same things attractive.
Perhaps if I was allowed to care about girls the same way,
Maybe we could have both enjoyed the gossiping.
Do certain memories make more sense now?
You were the first person I met —
Where I wanted to get your approval,
Instead of the other way around.
You were intelligent — you could speak in ways I couldn’t.
You were capable — fully confident in your abilities.
You were creative — allowing your passions to glimmer.
You were the perfect Mormon girl,
And I tried desperately to keep up.
You strictly followed LDS teachings,
Positive of the religion you were born to.
It was your life,
You loved it.
You were everything,
And I was nothing.
I was never right about you.
You didn’t have a perfect life.
You had a good life,
A happy life, true —
But not a perfect life.
And you shared pain will me.
You were even stronger than before.
You created your own perfect life.
That wasn’t a BPD delusion:
That part was real.
I saw evidence of it,
All the time.
You were a fire burning —
Not one of hate — but passion!
You were never afraid,
You gave anything your all.
You had pains in your past,
But you didn’t let them define you.
I watched it all with such marvel —
It’s comforting to me.
You showed me how to deal with pain,
I did not know I had any at the time.
Hidden behind these amnesia walls,
The memories laid back, dormant.
But I wonder if they watched you —
Observed you dealing with your pain,
Seeing how you didn’t let it kill you.
I wonder if my memories viewed it
From behind those very tall walls.
And perhaps it altered them,
Even the smallest of change.
Maybe a piece of the wall cracked.
Perhaps you did help me,
In a way I didn’t realize until writing you this poem.
Remember when you wrote me that diary page?
It meant everything to me.
I took multiple pictures of it,
I would constantly read it.
I still have it.