Today is my birthday and I am fourteen.
At times I want to celebrate, at times I want to scream.
I feel so old and feel so young. My life rolled into one.
When I woke up and Mummy said “Happy Birthday, Emme Skullz!”
I wondered why she didn’t see how unhappy I’ve become.
Sometimes I feel like no one’s there, no one’s listening, no one cares.
Sometimes I feel they stop and stare.
I can not help that I’ve no flesh. My heart beating out of chest.
I don’t have muscle or tissue there to hide their eyes, to shield their stares
and so I feel most ever glance whispers, “Emme, you’re picked last.”
Twin brother Emmet, fourteen too, doesn’t feel as awkward as I do.
He smiles and shrugs, eats birthday cake. He gobbles life without a break.
Alone in his room, his imagination soars and he creates gadgets I think dreadfully bore.
But Emmet knows something I do not. He knows the truth that I forgot.
You should not care what others think! Just bat your eyes. When they stare—blink!
He celebrates himself for who he is. He knows he’s not like other kids.
Who’d want to be Emmet? Well, who’d want to be Jane? Or Jason, Henry, Molly, Shane?
We all want to be like everyone else. Pre-packaged toys sitting on the shelf.
But Emmet knows this isn’t the way. He’s who he is on his birthday.
And since this day is my day too, I’ll borrow from Emmet and squash the blues.
I may not be like everyone else but it’s not their birthday and I’m myself.
I’ll never think the way they do, or act the same or follow suit.
I do things the way I do.
And while it’s weird and scary still, there’s no other me and there never will.
So “Happy Birthday, Emme Skullz!” and I stop my sulk.
I’m here today, not gone tomorrow. I shouldn’t waste this sunshine with my sorrow.
Fourteen candles light the way. Keep blowing candles til I find my way.