There's a lump in my throat one holding me in hypocrisy for what I should be I'm trapped in the same location as my past lies void of new creation I long for something new and pure an eraser for my past that could be my eternal cure I'm alone and slowly drowning deep within this broken mind a fading hope within me for the life I'm trying to find.
The glint in her youthful eyes reminded me of a past forgotten. A conscience buried with betrayal and desire. I never knew what it would’ve been like to live a normal life: go to a high school prom, apply for a college, drink a beer in the middle of a field somewhere. No. I was stuck in a realm on repeat, one where none of this mattered. A glance down to chipped nail polish sent me back to the hands of my mother. A haphazard attempt to make things seem normal, like we could afford to participate in such frivolous behaviors. In all reality, that nail polish came from a partially cracked bottle in the parking lot of the Dollar Tree. Her porcelain skin yet to be marked by the dark circles of teenage years: the stress, the anxiety, the agony. The first time mine appeared: I had pulled an all nighter watching my father in a hospital bed – him begging for forgiveness. He should’ve asked for that before he spent our money on tiny pills in even smaller bottles. My past life only surfaces on rare occasions such as these, when I see those seemingly untouched by life’s ruthless fist and a spirit unbroken and free such as a bird on a pristine spring day. And as I recline on this park bench in the middle of October, I think about what could’ve been if only. If only. A figure enters my peripheral and scoops up the child and perches her on strong shoulders, I am tempted to say something – anything, but instead I resign to give the pair a sideways smile and watch them disappear into the concrete jungle.
Thanks for being my longest friend. You have been here for six years, starting out by kidnapping my mind as a young eleven year old in the heart of figuring out how to go about this life thing. You gripped my brain and molded it into what you needed it to be like in order to control me. You had me right where you wanted me and you got me. Congratulations.
Thanks for being the only one that loved me. Or so I thought. You trapped me inside of myself and let me live in ignorance. Made me believe that no one cared, but you my friend, you put up a black sheet in front of my sun. In front of my only hope of light. Smothered me in darkness away from my family, friends, and those that realized something was wrong. You sheltered me from what I needed most. I thought you took away my reason and those who loved me, but they were there the whole time.
Thanks for keeping me up at night. Yeah. You. The one with the painted on grin gazing into my soul absorbing my confidence and turning it into shame. The one that wraps my dreams into nightmares and brings my worst fears to life. I found a lot of new music because of you. I learned that if I listen to it loud enough, I can tune out your voice and finally allow my eyes to close.
Thanks for taking away my sense of reason. The lack of sleep I got just up thinking about you drove me insane. It took my reality and wrapped it up in terms of unrealistic expectations and nonsensical worries. My insanity meshed the shapes of people that I had grown so fond of and turned them into the demons that haunted my nightmares. A dark box that blurred my hopes and dreams.
Thanks for going on adventures with me. You were there in the heart of my birthday parties, all my social gatherings, and my nights out with friends. You are there as I stare into the mirror each morning and you are there in the smooth reflection of the water on my lake days. You are everywhere past and present.
In all honesty, thank you truly. You’ve taught me how to depend on myself through good times and bad. You’ve taught me that I don’t always have to be okay and I don’t always have to explain my feelings. You’ve made me learn that I can’t be so fast to judge other people because I don’t know what they’re going through. Last but not least: Mental Illness isn’t the end, it is just a start to a new beginning and I will always remember that. Thank you my friend.
(this was a collaboration piece written for Roads We Take- they share the life stories of others in order to try to help people feel less alone. Highly recommend reading the things they have on their site and check them out 🙂 )
Also, I work 2 jobs and am a full time student. I’m okay I promise and regular posts will be coming soon. Thanks to all who have been checking up on me. xx
Lots of Love
Can you hear me? I called for you I whispered softly as my panic grew Can you hear me? I'm falling apart now reaching for you screaming loud Can you hear me? I am nothing my thoughts are holding me up trying to make me something Can you hear me? I'm dead to the world and all around me heaven twirls
looking back my laughs were louder my thoughts were purer and my parents prouder looking back I have your hand in mine your heart held tight and a love I struggled to find looking back I was sad falling apart and at life I was mad looking back down upon the planet people are laughing as I proceed with my last transit
I'm screaming in silence my hands grasp the invisible as I close my eyes tighter to hide all that is visible I breathe in tears and feel as if I'm drowning I feel the burning in my soul and my heart is pounding I reach inside my brain to smother all I know but am resisted by the vines by which my panic grows The stems reach up and around me close my sanity is leaving as the shadows enclose
What is in the wind? Science says its just moving air. 78% nitrogen. 21% oxygen. 1% Argon. That is the chemical makeup of something far much greater than a moving mass of air. Embedded in every gust of wind, there are breaths: breaths of life and breaths of death, breaths of homelessness and breaths of royalty, breaths of change and breaths of constants. A swarming mass of life absorbs us every time we walk outside and yet we just complain about it messing up our hair. On this same brisk blast of air, one may have gotten proposed to, it could hold memories of a first kiss or memories of a last, it could hold particles of a last goodbye, but the wind is too cold; it is time to go in now. We stay inside sheltered from the lives of others as we stick our noses into a laptop or put our heads under covers to sleep. We try to forget about the hardships of others and their triumphs as we focus on us and wanting ourselves to come out on top. The next time you’re outside and that wind picks up: think about everything that could be happening right now, to people you have no idea about, people you have never met before and let it wash over you. The wind holds far greater wisdom than it gets credit for.
Memories are painful stored up and away but what hurts the most is their tendency to stay They wrap themselves around and hold fast to your brain never allowing you to forget and leave on your heart a stain All around you there are places that will prick you inside but what you have to realize is you aren't that same person you're still trying to find So gather those moments and treasure them well because one day very soon they won't be the key to a living hell
North Star: a star that is used as a reference point in navigation or astronomy.
A necklace. That’s all it is on the outside. A necklace that we found on sale for $30 towards the end of what would’ve been my first semester of high school. It’s nothing too special: it has no monetary value, the chain is severely tangled, and the pendent is dirty looking beyond the fix of a simple cleaning. Yet, this necklace means so much to me. Why? I was in line at Target a few days after I got it when the lady ringing up my purchases told me she liked my necklace and asked if it meant anything to me. I told her no it didn’t actually, I just thought it looked cool. That turned out to be the last time I ever said that.
For about three months before buying the necklace, I was in the hospital for a swallowing disorder that has a super fancy name that I honestly don’t remember. It was brutal. I was told I was lying, that I was wasting money, and that I was ultimately killing myself for “refusing” to eat, drink, or speak. This was the first time I was introduced to the phrase “find your own North Star” that I heard in passing conversation in the Children’s hospital wing. That phrase sunk in and then it was forgotten in the bustle of medical tests that I was enduring. Flash forward.
I’m sitting in English class in my first day of high school (three months late) rubbing my new necklace between my thumb and forefinger (which for some reason calls me down a great bit in stressful situations), and thinking about the question that was written on the board “What keeps you going?”. I was stuck. I had absolutely no idea. My life had been a living hell the last few months and I didn’t want to keep going. But here I was. So why was I here, what kept me on this Earth right now. It was in that moment that I went back a few pages in my notebook to try to jog some inspiration and saw where I had absentmindedly scrawled “find your own North Star” between notes and a study guide. I didn’t remember writing it, but in that moment those words hit me deep. Find your own North Star.
My necklace is a compass. It’s a dainty necklace with the cardinal directions on it, and in all honesty I had no idea the other directions were on it until just now because the others didn’t mean anything to me. Fun fact of the day 🙂 The find your own North Star meaning to me goes a little like this: No matter what situation you’re in. No matter where you are. No matter where you go. No matter what tragedy hits or celebration occurs or if you lost motivation or if you feel empowered. The stars are always there. They never go away. The stars in your life can be a goal, a dream, aspirations or anything else you could possibly want. In life, there are times you will feel lost, like you have no where to go. You’ve lost where you came from, your sense of direction and feel like you’re ultimately spinning in circles. I encourage you to look up. Find your own North Star. Keep moving. Move towards your goal, dreams, or aspirations. Move towards what you want. The best thing is: it’s your North Star. No one can tell you which one will take you the right way or what decisions will bring you closer to it because their star is different from yours, they’re going another way and that’s okay. North Stars will guide you home.
This necklace (see picture) and its symbolism has guided me through a lot . It’s been through two boyfriends, the loss of a house, the loss of family and friends, two surgeries, more hospital visits than I can count, two trips out of the country, and has inspired me to share my thoughts with you. It is my hope that those of you who read this, whenever you see a compass remember this and look for your North Star and if you’ve gone astray get back on the path. I have faith in you to reach where you are going. You are capable. Find your North Star to bring you home.
I'm driving away down roads that line my heart that's beating in perfect time to the memories of my past beginning a new present and future destroying the person I grew to be now and retreating to hide behind the curtain of who I actually am inside