February 14 – eighteen, no pressue

February 17, 2022


Natalie Mix

A photo from The Central Trend’s Valentine’s Day bake sale

it feels like there’s a lot of pressure

to make this one,

this last poem,

something special


the same way i felt like there was pressure all day

to make today something special,

these last few hours before eighteen


but in reality,

eighteen is just another number


maybe i won’t be able to sing “Dancing Queen” with the same conviction

but otherwise, i’m still the same girl who’s been writing these poems all week,

trying to figure out things about herself,

realizing that she is happy with her life,

all the ups and downs it entails


i was all over the place today,

felt a bit like i was mourning something,

the loss of something sweet and seventeen,

and my therapy sessions left me wide open,

scribbles and musings spilling out of me into nothingness


but then i went home with the ghost of chapstick on my lips,

spent the evening realizing the golden threads that time has sewn between us,

that pieces of us click into place, aren’t so full of questions i’m too scared to ask,

rather laced with understanding that unravels itself in my bloodstream


i’d like to go back to that girl three years,

who met someone thrilling and convinced herself of a lie,

that girl two years ago,

who cluelessly lived a distinctly parallel experience,

that girl nine months ago,

who stumbled over her words and didn’t say what she knew was true

but confessed it later, and let something magical happen to her—

i’d like to show her the way we laughed today,

the things she calls home now


i don’t think it will be so bad,

to step out of childhood,

leave some things behind, but gain even more


and as i watched the snow slowly glitter into view on the asphalt as i drove home,

there was little to mourn


i’m eighteen now,

and the world is still spinning,

will keep spinning


i’m eighteen now,

and i’m okay

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