Breathing over Reacting

So you breathe . . .
. . . you breathe because breathing
is the one thing
no one can stop you from doing

You breathe because
your breath is your proof
It’s the one thing that says,
“You’re still alive. Now go”

Your breath is your proof
This means you haven’t stopped
This means you have life in you
So breathe
no matter what is said or done— just breathe
because your breath is the one thing
no one can steal

And when the walls close in
when the voices in your head
say, “Everyone’s in on it.”
and you think you’re on your own
when the thoughts you think betray you
and when the worry you feel
is painful, loveless, lonely, and cold
. . . you breathe
just breathe
because this is the best thing you can do

You breathe because breathing
gives you a minute to think
Breathe . . .
because it allows you to sort
between the the lies in your head
and the truth in your heart

Breathe
because breathing gives you a second
to gain an honest assessment
this way, you think before you act
otherwise,
the thoughts you think
could destroy everything you’ve worked for
(irreversibly)

Breathe
before you speak,
you breathe
before you say anything,
just breathe
before the anxiety takes you away
just breathe

Breathe because your breathing
will pause your reaction
So you won’t overreact
or erupt.

Breathe because if you don’t
next thing you know . . .
you’ve erupted
you’ve exploded
You’ve gone beyond the point of no return
you went too far
you said too much
and it’s too late
because all the apologies you say
will not salvage the damage
you’ve left behind

So breathe . . .
Give it a minute
and see what comes next

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