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By Jessica Mohsen-Crellin

I have teeny, tiny plants that sit on my crooked windowsill. Speckled in sunlight and basking in the dirt, these teeny, tiny plants never seem to grow. They never seem to stretch their neck or widen their reach. They just sit there, remaining teeny and tiny, and on my crooked windowsill.

One day, I moved one of the teeny, tiny plants. I pulled it away from the crooked windowsill, away from the speckled sunlight, and everything I thought it needed, to fill a space on the shelf above my television. Within a few weeks, that teeny, tiny plant had doubled in size. A single stem had shot upwards and slowly unfurled, revealing dozens of new leaves, and ceasing this teeny, tiny plant from remaining teeny, tiny.

Apparently not all plants need all the sunshine all the time. Apparently, the absence of sunshine can force some plants to grow even faster in order to expand themselves to be more capable of absorbing the limited sunshine they do receive.

I resist the urge to make a metaphor, to compare myself–my empty, swollen stomach, the unnecessary stretch marks that pucker across my lower abdomen, the ache in my back that reaches up into my throat, grasping for its life and choking out the breath, the pooling of thick, clotted blood between my legs–to a plant, to tell myself that perhaps the darkness is ok, that my body is just becoming more prepared to let in the light.