Let Me Be Honest

When darkness hits, I am rendered emotionally paralyzed. Motionless. I am consumed by shadows of regret. They dance around my living room and crawl underneath my sheets. I don’t know why I get like this, a walking zombie, a useless corpse.

My unintentional thoughts like to tell me I’m not worth the fight, that I’m not worth standing up for. That it’s not worth trying to get better. So I sneak off into my own world, shrink into the depressive state, and not let anyone in. It’s what I’m best at; hiding, running away. I am just a mixture of negative thinking and blurred lines.

What I am trying to tell you is that, if you ever feel this way, you are not alone. You are the farthest thing from alone. Be honest with yourself, be open to the ways that you are feeling. Don’t let the unintentional thoughts that ravage your mind and terrorize your soul  become the very thing that you are. 
Don’t be ashamed that sometimes you  are weak. Our weaknesses are the very things that make us strong. 

I Am Whole

She is but a ghost, a scattered memory pulled from the deepest parts of my mind. When I look into her eyes, I see a layer of glass that shelters almost a decade of sadness. This girl from my memories spent her days staring into a mirror that shouted insecurities back at her. She yearned to be more in a world that looked at her as less than. She longed to be better in a society that told her she never could be. Everyone thought she would die like that, with a needle in her arm, laying on top of all the bridges she was burning. 

But she didn’t. Her body was given a new soul, a soul that has slowly but surely become me; who I am. Every part of who I was supposed to be lives and breathes inside of this body that was once frozen and useless. 

I am whole. You can be, too.

Our Own Worst Enemy

The past was terrible. It was lonely and painful. The past filled you with memories that dance around you like shadows. It has made you feel crazy and chaotic, broken and weak. Maybe your family gave up on you because of it, or maybe you gave up on yourself. Maybe you look into the mirror and you hate the body that you live in. You hate your body, all the way down to every vein that twists and turns inside of you, keeping your heart beating. Perhaps it’s because you see the person you used to be in that glass reflection. Perhaps it’s because the person you became is nowhere near your heightened expectations.

We are all full of different perceptions, different perspectives. The ways in which we see the world, the ways we view the people living and breathing around us, is what makes us who we are. Including the way that we see ourselves. 

Sometimes, we are our own worst enemies. We build walls around our souls, burn bridges and break our own hearts. We become the monsters that we constantly tell ourselves we are. But that’s not how it always has to be.

We can be strong and brave despite our mistakes and imperfections. We can be great and mighty regardless of the people we were before. We can kill off the old versions of ourselves, make them exist only in places that make us better.

We can be better. We just have to allow ourselves.

There is a Girl

There is a girl who lives in the forest. Every morning, she wakes up to the cacophony of birdsong outside her bedroom windows and the rays of sunlight that pour in from behind the canopy of trees. She makes a pot of coffee and stares outside to see the beauty that surrounds her. The trees stand spirit-like, observing the girl’s house that looms above and around them. When she opens her kitchen windows to the wooded air, she can almost smell the coppery scent of the river that lies within the heart of the forest. She closes her eyes and breathes in. Her nose fills with the sweet smell that radiates off the beds of pine needles covering the forest floor.

It smells like home, she thinks.

The man she loves comes up behind her and wraps her up in his embrace, kissing her neck and playing gently with her hair. She spins around and flashes him a smile, digging her head into his shoulder. Her children are still asleep.

This girl has lived here for quite some time, her soul craving serenity and her thoughts seeking retreat. Closing my eyes, I can see her. Freckles mark her face in patterns. Pale skin stretches over bones worn from experience yet blossoming with strength. Eyes filled with the reflections of her memories.

This girl exists only inside the crevices of my mind, just beyond my eyelids, in between thoughts that rage and fly across membranes. She is a part of me, in a way, and she lives a life I’ve never known but always wanted to experience. Her heart beats the same rhythm as mine, and her soul is filled with the same hurt as me.  I am like her but, at the same time, I am not. She is better than I am, full of more grace and patience. Full of more strength. Full of all the things I’ve always wanted to be.

I believe that I created her at times when loneliness consumed me and thoughts of a better life would not leave me alone. I think that she began to exist because I could no longer stand myself, because I needed to feel like there was more to me than just bouts of sadness and fits of rage.

In some ways, creating her saved me. In others, it did not. Either way, I am no longer alone.

What Society Doesn’t Teach Us

I’m becoming more aware of the little things, like the way the floor feels on the bottom of my feet as I tumble out of bed, or the way my daughter’s hair smells when she hugs me really tight. I have these epiphanies regarding my mortality that make me appreciate the things I’ve been gifted with more; lips to speak out of, lungs to breathe with, a heart that beats inside of my chest, legs that walk. I could go on forever about fortunes which lie in our grasps, privileges we often take for granted. But I think you understand where I’m going with this.

I am starting to notice things like the way my pupils change in reaction to the light. I look down at my hands and I see the lines that God carved into my palms, the intricate beauty planted into our skin that television never shows us.

It’s funny, really. Well…maybe not so much. Society doesn’t teach us about the beauty of stretchmarks upon a woman or a man’s skin, nor does it teach us about the wonders of an intelligent brain or about smiles that could light whole houses.

No. It teaches us what “good enough” is supposed to look like. Lies that we are taught to believe, fantasies that we are expected to measure up to. It’s all fake. Trust me, it is. None of it matters. One day, you are going to lose that perfect figure, that toned body that you wasted years struggling to obtain. Growing old is inevitable. Our bodies will shrink and wrinkle, wither and writhe into foreign shapes and forms, things that we no longer recognize. Our soul is what permeates eternity, the things that we stand for are what stay with us forever. Have you ever heard the saying, “It’s what’s on the inside that counts,”?

It’s damn true, people.

Stop wasting your precious time on trying to look the way television tells you to look and spend more time focusing on what’s going to make you happy, on what’s going to guide you through the darkness when you’re without any light. Those are the things that should matter; the little things. The things that we fail to recognize on a daily basis.

Appreciate those moments that are important in your life, so you don’t end up taking them for granted and regretting it forever. Kiss your kids goodnight and make sure they know that you love them. Call your grandparents or some other relative just so you can hear their voice. Smile, because smiling is crucial. Forgive someone. Start repeating affirmations to yourself in the morning. Go grab a coffee with a friend you haven’t heard from in a long time, someone you’ve been meaning to reconnect with. Start that project you’ve been wanting to start for months or even years.

Just do some things a little differently. Focus on something you wouldn’t normally focus on. You never know how it could change your perspective.

 

 

Choices

Stop pretending like you’re fine when you’re not, when it feels like your soul is burning out & your heart is drowning. Talk about it. Cry about it. Listen to the way your heart beats when it’s aching & embrace the pain that you feel inside. There’s nothing worse than feeling like you can’t breathe, like the sadness is holding you underwater, other than those moments when you look around you & everyone else is breathing just fine. You don’t have to be alone. You don’t have to let it destroy you. 

Make the choice to allow the gut wrenching pain to push you farther. Let it motivate you to become better. Let it make you stronger. It’s as if you’re on a ship & that ship is guiding you through your life. Let your thoughts, your pain & your fears be the lighthouse that shows you how to get home.

Stop wasting your time on people who couldn’t care less about you. Your days are numbered & valuable. Every second of your life counts. Those people who bring you down, those people who constantly doubt you, they mean nothing compared to the light that shines inside of you. You are worth so much more than the negative things that people might say about you. Things like, “You’re never going anywhere,” or “You’re not good enough,” are lies. You don’t have to listen to them.

You only have this one life & it is extremely precious. Your soul is the only soul that you will have for an eternity. The body that you have is the only body that you were given. Treat it well. Pamper it, if you must. Appreciate the things that you have when you have them, because time tends to take those things away sometimes.

We all have these choices in our lives. We have the choice to let everything destroy us, or we have the choice to let them build us up. What choice are you going to make? 

I Am Human.

My past is like a garden inside of me, blooming & growing & giving birth to beautiful things. My thoughts are constellations, whirling around inside the depths of my mind. These bones make up the fortress that holds the very thing that I am & my skin, etched deep with scars, is pulled tightly over it. My organs beat & hum inside me, full of life & sometimes even purpose.

I am the same thing that we all are. I am human. I am flawed & full of painful memories. I am imperfect & yet beautiful.

I am a walking storybook,
& I keep on turning the pages.