I stand in a doorway

Waiting to be invited in.

But the invitation doesn’t come.

You tell me you’re too busy

Or I’m asking too much.

Or you would rather I just go away.

You don’t say these things, of course,

But in every breath and movement

I feel your annoyance at my presence.

But that’s not what you meant?

How else am I supposed to take

Your heavy sighs and simple words?

You talk over me,

Telling me that my perceptions of your (in)action

Are all in my head.

But how can that be?

Impact trumps intent.

And I am being told in word and deed that I am not welcome here.

I take a deep breath and push through the door.

I’m making space here for myself

Since you don’t see fit to.

I rearrange boxes, pull up a chair.
Finding – or carving – a place at the table.

Because I belong here.

I say it out loud:

“I belong here!”

And even if I don’t feel it, it is still true.

I feel like I’ve worked my fingers raw

Moved around furniture and set up shop.

Because the truth is I have.

And I do this too often,

Either standing uninvited on the outside

Or muscling my way in to too many spaces.

But today, I claim this space mine.

I have every right to be here.

And I just need to remember

I always have

The right to exist

To be here

Just as I am.