the softness of relearning her

Day 2

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She woke.

 

The world had not shifted, the rain didn’t stop. The bustle outside had not slowed and the voices had not hushed.

 

But she woke, and with her my world had changed, and it was through clearer eyes that it brightened. I was no longer concerned with the bustle, and the whines faded until it was just her breath.

 

In

 

Out

 

In

 

Out

 

And finally, I felt like I could exhale. Her eyelashes stayed impossibly still, hiding what I wanted to see most, what I needed most. Her chapped lips were still closed. It was like time had slowed to allow me a moment to memorize her up close. Memorize her in a way I had been unable to for years. At least not without fear and hiding, waiting for him to pull me from her like he swore he would, like I had seen him do to so many others. My brothers now lost and alone only served as reminder for the power he had. He could never find her, I wouldn’t let him,  and because of that I could never have her.

 

In

 

Maybe the universe did know what would happen, that I would need this moment to look back to, a reprieve from the torment and longing I thought would be over. It was in that moment, the long space of slowed time, where it shifted. The softness of relearning her, counting freckles and knowing how her wayward hair curled into her ears and the sweet space between the side of her face and her neck, turned slowly, unexpectedly,

 

Out

 

into panic.

 

Would she know that it was me all along. The shadow she spoke to, the safety of darkness she sought. Would she be glad to know I was the void she shouted at and begged, that I was the quiet she whispered her secrets to. She said she knew I was real, even when her parents threatened, even when her friends laughed. She talked to me like she knew, showed me her world like she saw me. I wanted her to know, I needed her to. It was my salvations as much as I was hers.

In

 

She was eight when she stopped being afraid of the shadow, and she was ten when she embraced it. My life restarted back then, when she was newly ten and full of youthful bravery. It all changed the day she said hello to me, while laid in the grass with her hair fanned, surrounded by unseen clouds, and fresh tears staining her sun burnt skin.

 

Out

 

I had waited a lifetime, hers and mine, for that moment. And now it seems like another.

 

In

 

During the seconds between us I wondered. Was our time together, dancing shadows or fighting phantoms. Was that time, her and I, hope or was that truth. Would she remember what I had made her forget. Would she know me?

 

Out

 

And then her eyes opened.

 

In

 

Her head turned to find mine, and that when I saw it. The green I had spent an age staring into, getting lost in, were no longer bright and expecting, no longer enraged and passionate. There was no depth just a shallow pool of unrecognizable apathy. There was no longer a sparkle of life, just resigned exhaustion.

 

Out

 

The realization sunk into my chest like the pain of regret. She did know and she hated me for it. Before I could open my mouth to speak, plead, explain, say anything, everything, just something to change the way she was looking at me, she blinked.

 

In

 

And then she screamed.

the stillness of the dark

Day 1

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I want more for myself. Just typing that, thinking it, feeling it is has drawn out emotions I have ignored in favor of apathy if not to protect myself from the world than to protect myself from the truth of the reality my actions and inactions created. I gave up and hated myself for it, I was scared and ashamed of it. I yearned and was overwhelmed by it, I was alone and felt the weight of solitude. I was isolated and felt the warmth and safety of that seclusion. I broke and the worst thing is that I don’t know when. I did not see it happen. It was like the knowledge hid itself behind all my other fears. Like it was sentient and froze me in order to assault me. I was stuck in place, and in the depth, the very bottom of my despair, I knew I was stuck but in the leaden fog I was unaware.

 

It was in the stillness of the dark that I could pretend. And it was in the lightness of day that I knew who I was. I chose to live in the dark, unmoved, alone, and unraveled.

 

I am moving for the first time in a long time. My muscles feel stiff, my mind stifled, my heart atrophied but yet I move. I blinked and was surrounded by a life I did not recognize and that I never wanted for myself. I blinked and was someone I hated, I was living in a shadow world for years. I don’t know this person I have become. The stranger in my body, that stole my life, left me with habits I cannot break, fears I am unable to overcome, goals and dreams too far away to reach. How do I move past this? I am mourning the person I used to be but I am mostly mourning the person I could have become. It all feels too late.

 

I used to write. Since childhood the only thing that gave me more joy then reading a story was writing one. I used to give them as gifts, fill diaries, journals, and left over spiral notebooks with words and lives and dreams. I used to be optimistic and connected to others in a way I have lately only been able to connect to characters. I used to be scared but I also used to be brave. I want this past tense me to infiltrate this present tense me. I want to be a me I want to be.

 

Lately, what I write is anger, and fear, and plans unfulfilled, words underlined with changes I never made, improvements I was not ready for. The only time I have been writing is when I feel words screaming, things, feelings and emotions, I need to exorcize. And then I filter and edit and agonize and change and the words no longer scream, but are not freed either, just subdued. I want to write for fun, I miss the stories, the ones that whisper quietly while I clean, or dramatize a conversation I am having, or the world I created when trying to fall asleep as a child. I miss wanting to share them and I miss having something to share. Even the idea of having a piece of that excites me in manner I am no longer used to, and I wish I were used to it.

 

To be a writer you have to write. So, in hopes of gathering and combining all the little pieces of me, scattered between memories and wants, depressive episodes, bad habits, and body invaders into a semblance of a functioning human adult that somewhat reflects the person I wanted to be and values I used to have, I will write. Everyday. I don’t know about what yet. Rediscovering old interest in some manner I hope. Maybe I’ll do something I’m afraid of and find my bravery again. I can read a good book and share an opinion, or write a poem, find a passion, quick writes, prompted writing, and especially write stories about the worlds I have been living in for so long. But I will write.

 

This is day one of a 365 day journey. And it’s thrilling. And maybe by the end of it I will be someone I recognize again. Wish me luck! Talk to you tomorrow?

 

Humanity over politics

This is a quick write response to the Daily Prompt, my general thoughts of late, and an inspirational video I came across.

I am exhausted by the weight of the world. How can I do so little when I can see so much? I am tired from what little I do and what little I know but mostly I am scared. What little courage I have is stolen by the defeat of all that I thought was good in those that surround me, dissipating with each tragedy, each live lost, and within my own shitty unique despair derived from family reposting hateful headlines. I want hope but I sometimes think I would rather not have it then have a glimpse of it only to watch the world pluck that away too .

I have tried to avoid being political, mostly because I think real change happens in personal conversations and not through a blast on social media. Those who know me should know that I have loved poetry and spoken word since a young age. I came across this poem and I wanted to share it-not because of the politics but because of the humanity.

In some ways it has summed up what has long been in my mind and on my heart, It reminds me sadly of too many stories- of the tragedy at Pulse, of the racism and Islamaphobia my sister and I have faced since before I knew it was racism-often by those close to us, and especially of the black men being murdered and the lesser known black women being murdered with no justice. Who are often reduced to a clickbait type tweet mentioning the character of these victims with a character limit. He was not a criminal, he got good grades, she was a mother ect the tweets say. And while this does invoke the empathy that apparently lies within likes and retweets it overlooks a strong point, that it should be a tragedy regardless of their strong character.

Empathy can and should exist between people who are not a like. This is missing, this is how the Syrian refugee crisis is ignored, this is how trans rights are ignored, this is how people think that living is no longer a right “the other” has. It seems to me that society has forgotten that people have a right to their lives even if you do not like the way the live them. #blacklivesmatter

 

 

via Daily Prompt: Pluck

Touch

When you touched me I thought I would break. When you didn’t, your absence echoed and my body shuddered. I realized that your fingertips on my skin was the only thing that could put me back together, that could heal the pieces of me I didn’t know were broken.

i’ll be you instead

I am lost.

Being lost is a common story the anxious drama of my swimming head and the drowning sound my racing heart provides. The benefit (during healthy days) and curse (every other day) of living inside your own head is the loop of self reflection. I realized, even if I often deny it, that the people I look up to, watch, read, obsesses over, admire, ect are people I want to be. I change all the time and not in a way that signifies growth or adaptability. I change to stop feeling lost. I always feel wrong and itchy and off for no reason. Soon after I find myself buying Vans just like the pretty girl I saw in the mall, or wearing bright colors like that Instagram picture posted by anyone else, or listening to Beck because the nameless he told me to. My acne will go away if I use the same face wash as you do and then I might be happy just like you. You just hooked up on Tinder? Maybe I’ll retry online dating, then I’ll be less alone and less single. I’ll start to laugh like a friend, or wear makeup like the youtuber I love. I become sure I’ll look less fat if I wear the same clothes I just saw advertised by someone saying #effyourbeautystandards. Sure, adopting things you like and admire about other people/lives/places/allthenouns is just fine if you like it. Sure advertising is a bitch. Yep, I should be less gullible. Yep, to so many things that might not make this the end of the world. But the fact that I am writing this in the early hours of the morning having not slept at all because the discovery and examination of this has consumed all rational thoughts forces me to admit that in a way this feel like the end of the world. Why? I have officially realized in a, my stomache hurts and I want to throw up kind of way because how did this thing I do that feels like it has been integrated into everything inch into and weave through my life with out me knowing, kind of way: I dont know what I like. At all.  AND as a result- so many parts of current me is made out of people me, overtime, has tried to be.

What is it that I find so attractive about these people that makes me change? What am I doing? How have I let this happen?

going backwards. I never wanted to be me, I never thought I should exist in the world. I dont care about being me enough to not try and be anyone and everyone else. I never really wanted to die but I never knew how to be alive either. My life, the literal existence of me stripped away someone elses- by being born I ruined things. While this is something my therapist, yes!therapy, is working on helping me reprocess and examine, I grew up knowing and thinking this. So I wonder how much I function as an individual and not a collection of little things picked up. Is that even two different things? I dont know, I just feel like a magnet with little pieces of all things about someone else I admired at different stages of my life attached and thus creating a Frankensteinesque Miranda creature.

When I look at all these pieces that have made me and think about what I like about them, I have no answers.

The pain in all this discovery is that maybe, and how can a maybe hurt so much, the reason I was so attracted to these characteristics, enough to change and morph to fit them was because of the person I associated with them. Not that they are so admirable, or beautiful, or noble, although they probably are. Its just not that. Its that they radiated these traits so brightly, they were so true to themselves and seemed so definitive and cohesive. They were so THEY in a world where I have no ME. They owned themselves in a world where I lost myself. The saddest thing is that I have never cared enough to look.  I spent all my time doing anything to find myself morphing into these things people were radiating as their truth that I never even wanted to find my own truth. How did I grow to have so little value and not even notice. How have I become this thing, something I cannot even call a person. How have I lost myself so completely and how do I get back. How do I find the lost me?

via Daily Prompt: Radiate

Daily Prompt: Gone

I have been overwhelmed by the idea of infinity, endlessness, the sense of forever for a very long time. These notions and concepts terrified me as a child, truly scared me in a crippling manner. As I got older I learned to put this fear to the side, ignore it, and even pretend that it did not shape me. I thought it was putting aside my childhood fears that made me an adult, that was the maturity of a grown up.

 

The truth is that my personality has been defined by the things I have ignored.

 

I am twenty-seven right now and I am more in touch with these fears and feelings than ever before. I know the “who am I?” question is cliché and common. This commonality is, for some reason, a problem for me. I need to prove myself unique and special and maybe that plays into my avoidance. Yet, every part of my body is shouting it. I can feel the blood in my body yearn for truth, my skin tingle when it seems I have touched on it, even brushed by it.

 

My mom, as a way of assuaging my fears, would always say that I could always start over tomorrow, that trying again would always be possible. I do not know if my sense of needing things to be “good” and the way I imagined them came before or after this. But I always created this idea in my head of how something should be and was eternally disappointed when I couldn’t match it. It’s been paralyzing. I could not do any work unless my desk was just right, situated to match. I felt ugly unless my outfit reflected my creation of self. I couldn’t be me until I made all these pieces fit and in the mean time, the truth behind all of this meant that the fear of in adequacy was really just the truth, and I felt that. Feel that. I have never managed to measure up. I have finally realized my life has been on hold waiting, That maybe the dark clouds that always surrounded me, the bleakness of my life, the isolation of my mind was all really my presence in limbo.

 

I want movement. I want to live life and not just be a product of it. This New Year seems like the culmination of wanting to move on from my frozen life and the built in need for starting over. Maybe that I will know who I am, and I just hope that I am happy with the answer. That I will be something more that this shell. That I will become, and do more than witness.

 

Twenty seven year old me now knows what my child mind could not comprehend. That more frightening than endless time, than forever is time that is gone. I want more but how do I move past all the wasted time. I am twenty-seven and I have missed so much of life that I could have been having, loving, hating…I could have been more. What is worse than that which is gone? How do I do this thing called life, how do I live before I am gone? Am I too late? Is the life I was meant to live already gone?

 

My new fear? GONE.

via Daily Prompt: Gone