I hold myself away from the adventure of life. It is a roller coaster. I am poised at the drop. Here I am at my highest height gazing at maybe the lowest low. I resist the ride, hold my breath, squeeze my eyes shut. I will drop anyway. I will fall. And I will click my way back up, dragging and dragged back to the tippiest top. There, I will see how far there is to fall again. And, again, I will look at the peaks pointing like so many fingers. Every Hell is another promised trip to Heaven. Every fall is a new chance to climb. And every climb, there is me, scaling that mountain. Strong, strong, stronger.

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Shawna Ayoub

Shawna Ayoub is an essayist, fiction writer, poet and instructor with an MFA in creative writing from Indiana University. Some of her work has been published in The Manifest-Station, Role Reboot, [wherever], The Huffington Post, The Oxford Review and Exit 7. Her writing explores the intersections of race, place and survivorship. She writes with honesty about her own experience in order to transform pain.

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