On Letting Go.

For those who replay the memory

Ifie Natasha Brandon

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I was a new student at King Springs Elementary School when it happened.

My private Montessori school would only go to 3rd grade, forcing me and my other classmates to finish elementary school elsewhere.

One day I was walking from my fourth grade pod to the restroom. I remember wearing something frilly, something denim, and my black boots — no doubt from the old Payless on Atlanta rd.

I walked by a boy who I would later come to know as my friends’ brother. He called my boots cheap or ugly or something and I remember staring at him as I walked by — no words to say.

I remember telling my mom about it and she used that moment to teach me about the clap back. If you know my mom, you know she is queen of clap backs — not in a mean way, but in an honest way. If you ever want to know the truth about something, ask Charity.

She gave me a few lines to say back to him in case it ever happened again.I wasn’t completely confident in them but they were all I had so I tucked them into my pocket for future use.

As I grew, I’d think of that moment all the time. So insignificant. A fifth grader called my boots ugly and I thought about it for years??

I have this other memory of walking past that boy again. He makes another comment about my boots, and I say “At least I have boots!”

Not a strong one, I’ll admit, but it’s what I had.

Now here is where my memory gets fuzzy. I honestly can’t tell you if this other memory is actually real OR if it’s just a scenario I imagined so many times that I convinced myself it was real (look it up, it happens).

What I can tell you, is that I obviously have a really hard time letting go.

I’ve been seeing my therapist for 8 years, and to this day, whenever she tells me to let go, I think, “If I knew how to let go, I wouldn’t be talking to you.”

I do have tools and methods to help me let go — I write, journal, pray, meditate, asses, rationalize, read, and go to therapy. I run, I walk, I exercise, and I remind myself that the past cannot be rewritten or fixed — it just is.

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Ifie Natasha Brandon

Multi medium storyteller | Author | Yogi | Somewhere between Lauryn Hill, Nola Darling, & Jesus Christ