Sometimes I look into the mirror and at the person staring back at me like…what happened? When did I become an adult? Where did that little girl go? Wasn’t it just yesterday that she was playing outside, dancing in her bedroom- dreaming of the independence of the grown-up world? Where was I all those years? I would have protected her. I would have told her that being a grown up is not all it’s cracked up to be. I would have begged her to stay young. I would have shielded her from every little thing that stole away her blissful innocence. Those eyes in the mirror have lost their light. Even when she smiles, she looks so worn. Battered. She stares back at me, brows furrowed, as if to say, “Why didn’t you save me?” I slowly reach out to her, and our hands meet. A tear slides down her face. I want to tell her not to cry…that it will all be okay…but my breath is caught in my throat. Looking into her eyes I whisper, “I’m sorry.” And then I turn away.