I look at photos of you, from before, and it feels like another piece of my ventricle is closed off. I wait for the dull ache, but the feeling burns. Memories tainted every time I go back to use them to hold on, but all I hear is “was this the real you”. Who is the real person, how real are you with me? Things I never questioned before you betrayed me. Slow and long I’m suffering, because now we don’t speak, when before hours couldn’t pass without you wanting to hear from me, days never passed that you didn’t call to hear my voice, I don’t remember what you sound like, smell like, taste like. You’re foreign to me, like an amnesia, waking from a long sleep, thinking you’d be there, yet I’m always alone, I gave up thinking I’d hear, “I’m home”, the moment is gone.
I talk a lot about feelings, love, patience, learning, and how to be a better person. These areas consistently are shifting in my life. I imagine it’s because of the level of importance they hold in my life. Living a life that was surplussed with love in some areas, and devoid and corrupt in others, has led me on this journey on learning to love the right way. I have few great examples of how love is supposed to be done; my grandparents being the main two and one (as a unit and then as two individuals). My grandfathers love is quiet. You never hear it, but you see in his actions that it’s there. No matter what I need, car problems, house problems, prayer, he’s available to me. Until I got older I didn’t even realize how accessible he was/is to me; I took it for granted. My grandmother, or mother, depending on who I’m talking to, is my greatest hair pull and deepest source of love. In many ways I am more of her than my biological mother (her daughter). The depths of my heart are limitless to the people I love; just like her. The width of my sensitivity, and want to be understood and cared for are unmatched; JUST LIKE HER. I literally don’t know where they end. She is everything. Literally. She gave me my first car, paid for me to go to Howard Community College (where I was able to kick butt and get 3 degrees in 2.5 years), she helped me pay rent and buy food when I went to Salisbury University, and to this day just randomly will call and say “baby do you need some food or money”. I get emotional when I think about it because there is no way I would have been able to achieve all the things that I have without her. Shoot, she even paid for me to go to driving school!
Loving me comes with a price. I know this. I’m hard man. Even with all that sensitivity, getting me to be soft, getting me to be affectionate, it is HARD; especially for my blood family (and boyfriends – but that’s a whole other post). I don’t know what age it started, but it was/is incredibly noticeable to her. She’ll say “I miss you” and I’ll be oblivious and say “I’m right here” and her eyes just get sad. I have tears filling my eyes writing this because I hate that my coldness hurts her. I have this guard around my family that I struggle with CONSTANTLY. I’m distant, and when I am around, I have to make effort to be thawed out. My energy immediately goes on lock down, and for the life of me, I just can’t figure out why! It’s a goal of mine, this year, to thaw out permanently. I want to be able to go around my family and glow the way I do around everyone else. I want to stop cringing when they go to touch or hug me. I want them to see that I love them versus just hearing me say it.
People often have excuse after excuse for why their life is the way it is. Or like to say that they’re being a poor friend or family member because they have the proverbial “lot going on” (but honestly who doesn’t?). I’ve been blessed to have friends, framily (friends that are family), and family who acknowledge their own decisions and how they have consequences. Recently I have emotionally cut a few individuals from my life. One an ex-boyfriend, the other someone I considered framily, but soon learned that relationship was one sided. Both of them have a lot in common. This intense obsession to be concerned with what others think of them, while also sabotaging how people will think of them. Both refuse to acknowledge any of their mistakes and how those mistakes and decisions have placed them where they are in life. I look back at all the time I’ve invested in them, and I remind myself in all things there is a lesson. Mine, you can only help someone as much as they will allow. And when that help turns into enabling or a crutch, you HAVE to change the situation, either with boundaries, or removing yourself altogether. After spending years trying to cultivate these relationships, of trying to support, I let them go. To be honest the pain was terrible. More so for the friend than the ex, but still, it was hard. I cried for days, never getting angry, but just this overwhelming sadness that someone who claimed to love me could do certain things and then lie to my face about it. But the lessons I’ve taken away from the last, almost decade of “friendship” and the brief romantic flame, have been amazing. I can see some areas I definitely need to improve upon, and more than anything, I am grateful to learn that there are some deep running faults I need to heal and repair.
One thing I find that really makes me a good person, is that I am willing to see where I went wrong in a situation, and apologize for it. Not just apologize but try to see what behavior and thoughts led me to do the wrong thing so that I can work on it. I am self-reflective (have to shoutout my friendmate (friend + soulmate) Gian for that), and the growth I get from that has been astronomical compared to the pain I’ve felt from bad choices I’ve made. Even in these two relationships, I really sat down and analyzed all the things I did wrong, not them, but me.
Because my response, my thoughts, my actions, are the only thing in this world that I am responsible for. So even though the ex continues to be a thorn in my side, I try to rise above. I try to control the rage and absolute “slap a b****” in check; don’t get me wrong, it’s the most difficult thing in my life right now; barring health issues. But the struggle is worth it, my patience when this is over, working with the assumption I continue to be positive and act in a way I would be proud of, will be immaculate. So, remember, take responsibility for your part and portion, and do what you can to improve regardless of the situation or the actions of others. No one said it would be easy, but nothing worth having or doing is. The outcome is ALWAYS worth it when you do the right thing!
They want you to do what’s best for you until that best excludes them, leaves them behind, or can’t be satisfied by just them. When you need more because everything you had is destroying you, so you have no option but to start over or die as more pieces of yourself are razored away into faux stretch marks. When your own hands need to be left behind because they leave marks of darkness across your “perfect skin”, and your mind needs to be left behind because it tells you everyday you’ll never make it without jumping off the edge, without burning everything around you to the ground, or without watching as everything melts like crayons under the Las Vegas Sun.
Bleeding until it’s all mixed. Into something beautiful? Something abstract? Something that hardens and becomes twisted from the original rainbow of beauty? The most beautiful things can turn into something you don’t recognize when the damage becomes too much, when the paper holding it together weakens, the beauty leaks out, oils stain the paper, even when what made it beautiful is gone, it’s never forgotten. How can it be when that’s the only reason it was ever wanted.
What is this twisted thing, feet dangling, hands gripping the rail, mind miles down searching the ground for answers never found. How long to hit rock bottom, to begin again or embrace the end. To rise again or leave the splatter of color trailing into the sea and soaking the fallen leaves.
Don’t want the world to know I’m by myself…don’t want the world to know I’m on your shelf…There’s no coloring around us anymore
– Coloring by Kevin Garrett
be alone. Because what is the point?
People swear they love you, but when
it’s only you, you can turn to. When
your back is against the wall, and you’re
looking for someone to break
your fall, just to realize they stole the grass
to help soften the blow.
Confused by the love people claim they feel,
when anytime there’s a problem, they can’t heel.
If you, gotta do it all on your own, you might as well
be all alone.
Why stress yourself with the problems of someone else,
when they’re one of the reasons, your life got mess?
How important are they, to suck your joy, and spit on
your hope, with no recourse?
Might as well be alone.
I can’t talk to you anymore, it seems to be at, but to a wall not a person, and my time seems lost. I wonder more and more, about time cashed in, never to be seen again. Maybe we were friends, or two sinners making excuses for the things we did. I sought the same thing, and lose it in the hope of what could be, never seeing what is until the thrumming of need becomes a docile pitter patter, lost rhythms into silent beats.
Not to be cliche, but, as long as I can remember, I’ve struggled with loving myself and wanting to live. To me it’s not a morbid conversation. A big portion of my life I’ve self harmed and struggled with suicidal thoughts. I’ve functioned, and at times, barely functioned as I dealt with an amplitude of mental, physical and emotional attacks.
I’m not generally an unhappy person; at least not now that I have more control over my life. Before the last couple years, I thought depression was something I’d inherited for being, as my stepfather put it “an evil child”. That it was the reaped curse of karma, and that I was just an unhappy person who loved misery. But as I’ve grown, I’ve realized that’s not the case. Yes I have seconds, minutes, moments, days, weeks even where I can’t make life make sense, but overall, I love my life. The good, the bad, and the ugly. I’ve learned to see that the struggles and adversities give me opportunities to grow and be better.
My point is, people who self harm or who struggle with suicidal thoughts are often plagued with shame. I choose to ignore that pressure tonight and share that I’m one of those people. Ignoring the fear, the panic, and the almost debilitating need to ctrl + a + backspace…I’m speaking on it. Because I know too many people who hide these feelings. Who are afraid, like I am, and because of that fear and shame are even more burdened by the struggles they go through…that we go through.
Tonight I just want to encourage those of us triggered and fighting our own minds to keep fighting. That even though no one can see you tearing yourself apart, I know the battle, and I’m here to listen. That the shame won’t always be there if you try little by little to tell it a girl (or boy or gender tag) has no shame. That with time, we can make it, and the current pain will be in the past.
There’s this idea that we just want to hold on to our high school years. Maybe not the act of actually being in school, but the ability to have less responsibility and have as much fun that we want. I know people, now, who still live life like they’re teenagers. They have responsibilities, but their lack of foresight has caused them significant lack in their own lives.
This question has been on my mind heavily.
What causes us to lose focus? To stay so stagnant that by the time we peak our heads out we are years behind all the people we used to enjoy spending time with; minus the few still “having fun”.
But what is more fearful than losing the one you love because you are inadequate? Than no one wanting to be with you because they don’t want to take care of you or fix you.
What is more fearful than people looking at you, knowing you, and saying “you’ll never be more than what you are?”
For those who have had limited to no success or accomplishments in life, maybe the fear IS succeeding. The idea that they could be more, could it paralyze them from growing up?
What happens to these people as they get older? Do you end up homeless? Or the son or daughter in the basement who never gets a place of their own, never holds a good job, and has nothing to claim as their own. Are they free or are do they feel caged?
What slows down their mobility?
As a doer, as someone who has been stagnant, as someone who has been afraid of success and of failing, as someone who has succeeded and failed, I wonder how people get stuck at just one of those phases. What life must be like to not know how to transition?
Can that be taught? Do we have books on that? How do you even begin to help someone who struggles in those areas without being overwhelmingly frustrated by their inadequacies?
I have so many questions.