Because you are supposed to be strong

You feel the tears well at the back of your eyes,

You feel the knots in your throat,

Knots that mean one thing only,

The tears are coming and they are coming enmasse.

But you can’t afford to let the dam burst open,

Because you are supposed to be strong.

 

You want to yell and scream at the world,

You want to lash out and find that closure,

You want to be able to curl up and just let go,

You want to be able to cry without holding back,

But you can’t afford to fall apart,

Because you are supposed to be strong.

 

So you keep it locked up inside you.

The hurt, the pain, the sadness,

It gets worse but it doesn’t matter,

You hold it all inside you because,

There are a million people watching, and

Because you are supposed to be strong.

 

You hold it all in cos that is what is expected.

You can’t admit you are on the path to depression,

You can’t tell anyone about it,

Because depression is an oyinbo disease,

Because Africans, Nigerians don’t get depressed,

Because they are supposed to be strong.

 

Until that faithful day when those barriers

Cannot hold back the dam and the dam bursts open,

And you take your last breath

Because you decide to end it all,

End this hurt and pain and sadness,

Because you can only be so strong for so long.

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