They told me happiness is a choice,
So, I chose happy.
When I was twelve and slowly understanding that by being female I was never going to feel enough, I chose happy
The day my mother told me I wasn't wanted, I chose happy
At thirteen, and feeling the splitting physical pain of my first period, and the mammoth emotional weight of my womanhood, I chose happy
When every magazine, every television show, every film, every billboard, taught me over and over, that my only worth was in the weight of my body, my complexion, my breasts, my sex appeal, I still chose happy
The day I realized that all my culture really expects of me was
And zero confidence
I kept on choosing happy
The day I was married off to an abusive man, I chose happy
When they placed her into my arms, as light as 7 pounds, as heavy as a life time of love, fear and never-ending responsibility, I chose happy
Through all the shame, all the blame, and all the alienation, I endured when I became a single mother, I chose happy
In all my loneliness, the disappointments, the depression, the medications and the solutions that did not work, I chose happy
The day my therapist took advantage of my vulnerability, I chose happy
When I don’t tell anyone that I often contemplate taking my life. It’s because I choose happy, the way society tells me to.