“Like a child” has gained such unfair negative connotations.

You’re such a child.

When will you stop behaving like such a child?

Such childish behavior. Grow up.

Phrases that seared my skin in younger years

And never once prevented a meltdown-

Though I didn’t know then that was what to call the 

Full-body scream 

That took me over

When something in my wake was

More than I could handle.

Sometimes, she’d mimic my panic

In cruel, sneering tones.

Other times, she’d just try to yell louder to be heard.

Hands would become involved-

Iron grips and swinging fists.

Pain was wrought.

Tears would come.

Blubbered apologies and hugs I was not

Ready for.

And, as time wore on,

I was neither ready to believe.

So began my attempts to duck it all

By containing every part of my youth,

Every piece of joy and fear,

Relegating them to secreted spots

She did not go to.

I stifled my senses when she was near.

At least, then, she could not fault my timidity…

I also stopped much playing in her presence.

Playing when it was not by her assertion just annoyed her….

But, eventually, this really meant I stopped playing at all…

Took me a lot of years

And countless dead ends to

Find there was another way to turn the phrase…

“Like a child”

Could be a ray of light unspoiled

By the cares of the world.

“Like a child”

Could be seen in a zeal for the 

simple things which move me.

“Like a child”

Could equal pure faith in something 

And Someone bigger than I.

“Like a child”

Might just mean entrusting

All the joy and the fear to

This One.

Slowly, I am learning to

In more than surface ways…

Slowly, I am beginning to

See the beauty of being

“Like a child”…