Collecting the Moments

Breathe – say it aloud to yourself.
Prep to sound improvised, but honest.
“What you said was inappropriate.”

You have to do this.
Think of your nebulous sisterhood.
You’d be letting Facebook down
Or at least, the section that tells you to fight
(No! Not fight. You aren’t fighting. Who’s fighting?)
You want to be strong?
This is how you do it.

Take five minutes Think it through.
You’re doing this for everyone else and him – he doesn’t know.
He’s oblivious and you knee-jerk laughed
You sent the signal – it’s fine.
See how I laugh it off?
I’ve had lots of practice.
I’ve got a thick hide.
Such a small thing. Not worth it. Move on.

You don’t want that following you,
so say it aloud.
“What you said was inappropriate.”

Be constructive.
Be firm.
Be nice be conscientious be right be collegial be calm be helpful be strong be neutral
Be clear.
Leave no room for dismissals.
You’re sweating. Maybe wait?
See if you feel the gentle pressure to act come Monday…
No. He’ll forget. He’s already forgotten.
Moved on.
Too easy to move on.
It must be now, while you have the feel of the truth of it.

Knock on the door,
Close the door three quarters.
“What you said was inappropriate.”
Avoid using the word “just”
“I don’t doubt your sincerity.”
“I’m not angry, but I have to be clear.”
Why am I helping you?
Saving you, warning you?
Oh how this could just spin out of that door-so simple!

“I appreciate that wasn’t your intent, but you made me uncomfortable.”

At best an uneasy moment of reflection.
“See you Monday.”
Not even an apology to carry out with you.
Go air your cooling armpits.
Wish you had stashed emergency crackers and cheese.
Wish you could drink the alcohol reserved for parties.
Wish the tiny flame in your soul eased the knot in your shoulders, massaged your guts loose, stopped the slight spinning feeling, helped you decide whether you wanted to stand or sit or run away.
Wished bravery equaled bravery like in the movies.

Look at sun through the thick glass.
Feel your dented travel mug in your fluttering hands.
You did it.
You did it.

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