“Guilt reflects and then leaves the rest to me. It started with a flash of light. A fist’s grip was loosened just a bit. There’s a constant slip out of the positive. Grace and hope I’m sure are on the way. It ended with a twist of fate. Hearts are breaking just a bit. So you killed more precious lives then you had let live. All the fear and all the cares of the world never forced themselves into my arms. It was your fear that helped me. Your fear that got me to move. Straight from your heart into their sight. For shame on you. Who cares about me anyway? It’d mean so much if you’d just save me. Save me.”
This has been a very rough summer, emotionally. I’m not always able to express my emotions. When I am, they seem to lunge out at me suddenly. I’m unprepared for the tidal wave in my heart and my mind. I’ve a tendency toward numbness. This is the worst… feeling so sad that you ache and being unable to find release. Therefore, let me introduce you to a fantastic article I’ve found which has several of my personal favorite cry, cry, cryin’ songs.
I feel as though I’m drowning. I always feel as though I’m drowning. I’ve been trying to do more of what I love. I’ve been acting and doing photography. It has been serving as distraction more than anything else. I can’t make myself happy anymore. I’m not sure I was ever really able to make myself happy, actually. It was more that I could use other things to make me happy. I drink to feel happy. I smoke to ease my anxiety, stress, nerves. I once felt happy by luring in men, receiving attention, having sex and convincing myself it was love. I’ve just always wanted so desperately to feel loved. I know there are those who love me. I have friends who love me. It is just so hard to believe that people love me. I feel so worthless all the time. Nothing fills this void. I just don’t know what to do to with this gaping hole in my chest. My Mother doesn’t love me or can’t love me or can’t love anyone. She rarely speaks to me and when she does her words slice into me. She has broken me in such a way, I don’t know how to put myself together. I feel as though I am a waste of life. Would that I could take my time and give it to someone who deserves it, someone who wouldn’t waste it suffering, drowning. I can’t disappear as I once could. I was so angry for so very long and I got comfortable there. I hid in my anger. Now that I’ve let it go I don’t know what to do. I just feel sad all the time. I don’t feel like moving or waking up or doing anything. I just want to live and die in my bed. I don’t want to put on clothing or brush my teeth or look at myself in the mirror. I don’t want to go outside. I don’t want to see people. On the best of days, I still have thoughts of ending it all. I imagine what it would be like to drive my car off the bridge. I can so clearly see my car going over the edge, crashing into the ocean, teetering for a moment, then sinking beneath the surface. Water begins rushing into the car, the pressure against the doors too much to open them, windows won’t roll down. Would I be terrified, sobbing, regretting my decision, or would I accept my death? When my Mother tried to kill me, I fought back. She sat on top of me, pinning me to the floor. I screamed. I clawed and scratched until she’d pinned my arms down as well. I was trapped. I couldn’t move. Her weight on me was too much. I remember the floor, hard and cold, the way my head and shoulders ached from being slammed against the tile. She pressed her shin hard against my throat. I choked out the words “can’t breathe”, upon which she laughed and said, “Good. Die bitch.” I continued to struggle, trying to free myself. There came a moment, when I couldn’t fight anymore. I was so dizzy. I was blacking out. In that moment I knew I was going to die. I lay there. I accepted my fate. When my Father suddenly burst in and pulled her off of me, I rolled upon my side choking in the air. My eyes readjusted to the scene as I watched her lunge back towards me and saw my Father grabbing her from behind, forcing her into a chokehold to keep her off of me. I just don’t understand. I can’t understand. The logical part of me understands that she is mentally unstable and needs to be hospitalized. The rest of me just can’t square with the fact that she actually tried to kill me. She pinned me down, sat upon my chest, leg against my windpipe, and as I struggled to breathe she told me to die. My head understands that she has issues, but my heart can’t understand what could move a Mother to want to kill her child. I’m not enough. I’m never enough. No matter what I do I’m crushed by the weight of her disapproval. She can’t love me. It hurts. It all hurts. I have flashbacks everyday. Every goddamned day I walk down the stairs into my kitchen where it happened. Everyday I walk down there and I see and feel everything I felt then. I walk into the big house and I have flashbacks from childhood. Every corner of this place is haunted by memories. My head hurts and my heart hurts and I just want to die. I just want to set the place on fire and watch it burn. I want to burn with it. I am broken. I need to be hospitalized as a result of what has been done to me. I want to be positive and happy again. I want to be sunny. I need to get help.
“Until you heal the wounds of your past, you are going to bleed. You can bandage the bleeding with food, with alcohol, with drugs, with work, with cigarettes, with sex; But eventually, it will all ooze through and stain your life. You must find the strength to open the wounds, Stick your hands inside, pull out the core of the pain that is holding you in your past, the memories and make peace with them.”
— Iyanla Vanzant
I hate today intensely. This is shocking only to what feels like a vast majority. Today is the kind of day that throws ones personal life into sharp perspective. Why, it’s nearly seven thirty in the morning! Have you called your Mother yet? It is a joyous day after all! Time to give love, show respect, and most importantly pay homage to your Mom on every social media platform known to man. There will be snail mail, email, twittering birds, tumbling kids, pinning parents, and much facebookery afoot today! Not to mention the minutes run up on all the well adjusted adults cell phones. Meanwhile the abused, orphaned, parentless adults will all hide in our caves or our cars or our closets until the rest of you shut up. I will likely steal money and drive around in my car smoking today listening to angry screamo rock and avoiding the thoughts in my head that so desperately want to pour out of my eyes. I will then likely come home, drink heavily, and disappear into only the most sadistic of movies. Considering my lifetime of abuse and the only nearly successful attempt upon my life three years ago, I think it quite fair that I have today (and the holiday season) to wallow and ache and pine for what I lost and have perhaps never had. I am especially entitled to today since this will be my very first year actually dealing with this day, or at least making the valiant attempt to deal. It’s funny how little I now remember about my childhood, but I don’t recall this day being all that special back then either. I vaguely remember trying, however I believe it was all rather poorly received. There were of course Crayola covered cards. There were flowers upon at least one occasion. There were cups of coffee. There were gift certificates for “one free song”, “one free car wash”, “one free chore”. I remember excitement, joy, and the attempt to surprise my Mother with breakfast in bed. I remember hugs, kisses, love, appreciation. Then I also remember being screamed at, cursed out, and beaten. Whether the same day or within several days, it always seemed to hit like clockwork. After all the pattern was always the same…
Step 1: Do something to show Mom how very much you love her!
Step 2: Be lured in by her warmth and affection, her words of love and affirmation.
Step 3: Get destroyed by the inevitable crash of emotion where she calls you bad words, tells you that you’re nothing, and perhaps beats you.
Yes, indeed, banner fuckin’ holidays man! This is the point in conversation where my inner John Bender comes to the surface. <Imitates Mother’s voice> “Stupid, worthless, no good, goddamn, free-loading bitch, retarded, big mouth, know-it-all, asshole, jerk.” So, who wants to come over? I have many friends whose Mothers aren’t Betty Crocker. There are those who drink excessively, those who are so self-involved that they were never really around, those who aren’t mentally all there, those with gambling addiction, those who didn’t protect their child from the abuse of their father, and so on and so forth. I don’t want to play the comparison game, but today I will, point me out a single one of these examples whose highs and lows were as extreme as my Mother’s. Point me out a single person who has dealt with the level of physical abuse that I have and isn’t currently residing in a meth lab or a psych ward. Please, I beg of you, find me anyone who knows what it feels like to have their Mother violently attack them and try to kill them. Find me anyone who has had their Mother beat them with more objects than one can count on one hand. Find me anyone who mourns this day, for the emotions I experience today are so far off the reservation that it would be nice to know that someone else, anyone else understands. I feel guilty for who I’ve been over the years, the way I’ve rebelled and made it all the worse. I feel guilty that my heart hurts so much that I can’t be above it all, give my Mother a card, tell her I love her. It hurts that my ex-sailor’s Mother has been more of a Mom to me over random facebookery than my own Mother has been. I ache for what everyone else has today and for the way they will complain about that which feels trivial to what I’ve been through. I’ve been asked why I can’t associate films, books, days like today, with my own hopeful future Motherhood. Well, firstly, I do not have children, and despite how I’ve wanted them over the years, I’m genuinely terrified that if I ever have children I’ll fuck them up just as badly as I was fucked up. Secondly, that is a question that only someone who hasn’t been through this level of abuse at the hands of their own Mother would ask. She is the one person in all the world who is supposed to love me and instead she’s tried to kill me. I don’t care how much therapy I attend, or how many exercises I do in my ptsd workbook, or whether or not I eventually have children of my own, this will never go away. I hope that someday it won’t still hurt so much. I hope that someday being the kind of Mother I never had will further help me heal. But, this doesn’t go away. The sickest thing about all of this is that I love her and I always will. I remember dancing around the house to MoTown records. I remember her brushing my hair, telling me how beautiful I was. I remember her embracing me and telling me how very much she loved me and how glad she was to have me. It’s funny how those memories hurt the most of all. If I could just erase those, throw them to the wind, perhaps it would be easier to move past it all. However, for as bad as she was, she was equally wonderful. Highs and lows, extremes, I’ve lived my life with these. Today hurts and it will continue to hurt. I will likely be up until midnight just to feel the wave of relief that the day has past and that tomorrow will hurt less. However, for now, I will be above all of this. I will post on friend’s walls about today. I will head over to my favorite Mommy friend’s house to watch our Sunday night shows. I will rage against my emotions as always. I will brush myself off, pat myself on the back for having felt my feelings, and written about it. Though everything hurts, I will hold out for hope. I hope to be a smokey, hurt, cracked, honest voice that echoes to others that they are not alone.