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When I sit down with her, arms extended across a gilded table, I present to her appreciation, accompanied by a side of respect. I pour her a bottomless glass, one that’s filled to the brim with kindness. After that comes a bowl of forgiveness, followed by love that is so expertly presented on a golden plate.

I give her a big bowl of caramel corn, along with permission to eat all of it. I watch her take shallow sip after shallow sip of acceptance, happiness, and understanding.

I throw away the doubt like spoiled milk. I continuously fill up her glass when she runs out.

I refuse to feed her malice, for I know that that is not what she deserves. Instead, I tell her that she is loved. I tell her that she is strong. I tell her that she is extraordinary. I apologize for every harsh word that I have ever assigned to her being, and I replace her pitiful, melted ice cream with her favorite cake.

After spoon-feeding her courage, I help her tear away a piece of bread from a freshly baked loaf. I smile at her when she smiles at me. My heart swells with emotion, and it’s not long after she finishes her meal that I feel the clouds part.

I realize that I should have been doing this all along. I recognize the detriment caused by negativity, by choosing to feed her, no, myself, anything short of kindness. I acknowledge how hard she has been trying, even despite all of the crap that I throw at her every day.

I acknowledge the fact that she is human. I forgive her for making mistakes in the past. I tell her that she is more than enough, for it is true.

I know that I would never, under any circumstances, sit and poison the food of others. I would never feed people hatred. I would never pile animosity on others’ plates. No. That is why it just boggles me that I would even consider doing that to myself.

So, I commit to love. I commit to forgiveness and honesty and joy. I commit to sharing a meal with her, providing her with anything she may need. I commit to unity, to generosity, to breaking bread, and when I do, I find the act to be just so simple, so trivial, and I wish I would’ve done it before.

By Kennedy Kelis

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