It’s been a crazy lonely week
Far away from loved ones
And out of communication means,
All I can aspire to be is a jovial picture;
A picture from my birthday photoshoot.
I am past the denial phase,
I acknowledge that it’s me in that picture
Not just the typical Instagram worthy pic,
But it’s me at the one percent where:
All is glamorous and prosperous;
All I am is grateful and graceful!
I envy the me in that picture
Which awakens my nostalgia
Wears down my emotional barriers
Deactivates the inefficient survival mode
And creates a sea of tears
I revisit my grandma diary, stories of her slavery labor
I revisit the absent parents providing my roof trauma
I revisit the sleepless nights and crazy school days
It all feels like an unbalanced cycle of life
The constraints professional life poses on our mental health.
Courtesy of the author
Link to the Italian translation
Alice Ghislaine Musabe is a Rwandan poet now living in Connecticut, USA, where she studies Psychology at Wesleyan University. She grew up captivated by mental health and later on found a way to combine her personal interest in and her professional aspirations into one with poetry.
Most of her poems revolve around feminism and love. She uses poetry as way of healing herself and her audience. Her works have been published in The Lavender and WesPhoto – Wesleyan University poetry and prose magazines – and by MEDSAR (Medical Students’ Association of Rwanda).
Her poems have been selected, along with others by Muqtar Inkindi and Constance Lumen Hirwa, for the poetry collection “Tales of the Healing Heart” about the struggles and conflict concerning mental health issues and disorders as well as the journey towards healing, in the lens of Rwandan youth who were born after the 1994 genocide against the Tutsi.