Growing Pains

by Aliyah Gillespie

I call it growing pains.
Those days where I forgot my purpose.
Those days where I longed for my mother’s touch.
Those days where I fought against myself.
Those days where I had to become a woman.

This ‘man versus self’ conflict must end because
I’m exhausted from fighting battles that are not mine.
Becoming a woman is like peeling an onion,
Pulling one layer back at a time.
It takes time.

I imagine becoming a woman is like a
Flower that is beginning to blossom. Then
There’s the wind that gives off
A calm breeze and
I feel it in my knees.

Understanding the dilemma; it’s not easy to become you,
It’s not easy to become me and
I’m still trying to understand how we grow
For what seems like forever.
Growing pains.

I change like the moon.
Fluid, but I rather not adapt.
I despise schematics, but I adore new things.
A walking contradiction.
A woman.

I understand much better now because
I’m older, wiser, and growing.
No more crying because I want to be happy.
No more internal incarceration because
I am free.

I look towards the sky.
I told my maker why
I cry when it rains because
I’m attempting to remove the pain of wanting to die
Out of my life
which was caused by my debtors and
I forgive them because I realize that
I am different and I understand that life isn’t easy however,
I’m continuing to grow, grow, grow.

Like the butterfly that once began as a caterpillar
I transformed from a child, to a girl, to a lady,
To a woman.
Evolution seemed like it took forever, but
At least it happened.

Growing pains.


Aliyah Gillespie is a sophomore from Egypt, Mississippi who is majoring in Spanish with a concentration in Pre-Dental. She enjoys writing creative nonfiction and traveling in her spare time.