I used to come home every day,
and my mom would have a nice snack
set for me while she gets lunch ready,
while I turn on TV to hear Kim Possible.
The most blissful innocent feeling.

I used to go to school to learn,
and not worry about my G.P.A
that is slightly above average.

I used to go to school
to spend time with my best friends,
no one was favoured over the other.

I used to go to school,
look at a boy and think
“He’s funny and nice,
maybe I should befriend him.”

I used to be in a class
where I could speak
my opinion freely,
without feeling judged.

I used to go to a party,
and there would be
lollipops and candy handed out.

I used to come home
with paint marks on my clothes,
yet I still managed to have
blameless, unimpeachable, clean hands.

I came home today,
my mom lived in another continent
along with my brothers,
my dad still at work.
I heat up yesterday’s leftovers,
and I turn on the T.V.

In hopes to see that
at least one thing hasn’t changed.
But it has.
“I’ve always wanted to be a cheerleader,
and now that I’m hot I finally can”
is the first thing I hear when I put on Disney channel.

I went to school today
to find out that my grade
in my favourite subject was 1% off an A,
I worried for my G.P.A.
I didn’t think,
“It’s okay, at least I learned something from this term.”

I went to school today,
looked at my best friends
who all favoured each other over me,
because they were a “couple.”

I went to school today
and looked at the boy
whom I used to call mine,
looked at another who smiled at me
and I thought, “Don’t trust him.
He’s just as deceiving as the boy
who claimed he loved you.”

I went to class today,
took a leap of faith and
spoke my opinion.
In return, I got mocking remarks,
my teacher told me
that I lost marks
because “my opinion was wrong.”

I went to a party today,
and there were no lollipops,
just cigarettes and alcohol.

I came home today,
with no paint marks on my clothes,
or a drawing to show my mother,
but the blood of my youth on my hands.
For I used to be innocent,
liberate to my thoughts.
But as of now, my conscience is trapped.

Trapped between the leftover food,
and the strain of having to be “hot”
to be able to achieve something.
Imprisoned in that 1% off, and the “If only I had’s.”
Enslaved between the friendships,
and the constant thought that
people are mocking me for being alone.
Lured within the manipulation
by the boy I love unrequitedly.
Frustrated within the opinions that were never spoken.
Maybe it’s true, society did kill the teenager.
Shattered… from the destruction of innocence.

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By Farah Khairat