I put on a brave face. I smile when I see familiar faces. I smile when I see friends. I smile when I see the people it's supposed to be okay to cry with. The people I can just be with. Because I should be okay. Because it's not supposed to be hard for me.
Sometimes the way things are supposed to be and the way things are differ. The way things are supposed to be and the way things are now differ. I am dreaming different dreams. Not new dreams, but dreams that have, until recently, seen less light, been given less attention.
I am learning to love these different feelings and no longer neglected dreams. I am learning to welcome solitude and find pleasure in time alone in ways I've not done before. I am rediscovering the feeling of a paintbrush in my hand and the way my fingers grip the pen as I strain to write as fast as I think.
But these rediscoveries, these new feelings, these dreams all fill spaces that were filled with different discoveries, feelings and dreams. The transformation from one discovery to the other, one way of feeling or dreaming to the other has been painful. A pain I thought I knew, but from this side of things it feels different. There is no one else to look to but the person I see in the mirror.
The tears are mine and I have caused them.
The heartache is mine and I am the heartbreaker.
So I put on this brave face and say, "I'm doing well." Because it is correct both in situation and grammar.