They make me who I am.
All of our stories are different, some are filled with joy and not painted across with big broad strokes of sorrow.
I didn’t always know a lot of my story, and truth told I may never know it all.
I knew that moving from the city to the country in primary school changed my course.
I knew that my brother dying changed me inside and wiped most of my childhood memories clean. I know that I still soften it by saying that he died and not that he committed suicide, because that will always be raw like blistered flesh never healed but hidden away.
I know that having my eldest child when I was 17 changed me again, forcing my heart to slowly bloom. As she has grown my strength and power has too.
I know that day that I ran to and bundled my children in the car pretending I was going to the hospital, but finally running for freedom, didn’t seem like one of the best days of my life but it was and it’s power still resonates through every bone I have.
I know that changing my name returned ownership of myself and my destiny back to me.
I know that the day that Papa Wolff popped up in my Facebook chat and made me laugh until my face hurt was the beginning of my life as me. The beginning of understanding that having a partner is that, an equal to fight through with and to always strive to make everything better.
I know that these almost five years have flashed by and I hold tightly to the days, even while they run through my fingers like water, because too soon they will be over and I am terrified of death.
Mortality booms in my ears and if I examine it too closely it blinds and deafens me.
I know that every day I can be grateful, to be here, to be loved and to work towards making this world a better place in some powerful way.
Because all the things, they make me who I am.