Sunday, March 15, 2009


When you tell me to close my eyes and find a safe place, I go to the beach, the ocean. And it stretches for miles before it meets the mountains way off in the distance. The sky is nearing dusk when all the colors melt together on the horizon to form a cosmos of reds, blues, yellows … The Ocean is very calm and I have to listen carefully in order to hear any sounds. When I listen carefully I hear the gentle lapping of the waves against a rock … The sand is so soft, I bury my feet in it and they melt away in the softness. Somewhere in the distance I can hear a small waterfall trickling into the ocean … When I look out toward the ocean I can see the endless miles of water. It’s crystal blue water. And I can sense freedom; the endless miles of freedom.

There’s a girl on that beach. She appears to be calm on the outside. It’s ironic that it is the calmness within her that is scaring her. She’s the only one there. She just came from a very scary and dark place: a place where she has trouble breathing; a place where the space is limited; a place where it’s dark; a place where the walls close in on her and get smaller and smaller. It’s a suffocating place. She cries there because she’s sacred she’ll lose her breath and die... The girl on the beach is the ‘real’ me at the present moment. It ISN’T me “the director” It ISN’T me “the mother” It ISN’T me “the wife” It ISN’T me “the friend, … the victim, the survivor or any other label” It’s the REAL me. She’s sitting on the sand curled up in the fetal position. She has all this beautiful landscape before her but she’s afraid to move from this one spot, but that is ‘ok’ for now because at least she’s safe from the scary, dark place. She takes a small stick and doodles across the sand with it. She WANTS so badly to speak but her voice is silent. As if the “logical” me is telling her to be quiet and stay silent.

The REAL “ME” wants the logical ME to know this: The real me hates herself and who she has become. She is worthless; she is a body merely going through the motions of living and being void of any feelings. She feels a profound sense of sadness. She feels as though she’s grieving the loss of a friend, only that “friend” is herself. She is so sad because she can’t find this ‘friend’ any longer and she was such a huge part of her life: The “friend” that loved her family, loved her friends, loved to laugh, loved scrap-booking, loved reading, loved dancing, loved singing and loved her career. Now, she just feels hollow and empty. As though her life has no meaning, as if it’s going nowhere and she is just ‘going through the motions” of what appears to be her life … she’s unfulfilled so she fills her life with negative obsessions. She’s a drinker. Alcohol seems to let her ‘forget’ and feel something again but inside she hates the person she becomes when she drinks. When she’s drinking she becomes uninhibited, free...she can pretend to be someone she’s not. But she hates how she feels after the alcohol wears off the next morning and she feels a profound sense of guilt for doing this to her body.

She feels lonely even though she has so many friends who love her and want to do things with her. She only does it out of obligation; she feels that she ‘SHOULD’ do it. She fears that if she doesn’t she’ll end up losing them because they will get tired of inviting her to do things and always having her turn them down. But the truth is it exhausts her to be social. She finds it exhausting to laugh when she isn’t happy. She finds it exhausting to make conversation and ‘small’ talk when her mind is so preoccupied with such bigger issues. Though she can laugh on cue, she feels as though she has nothing of value to contribute to the conversation. And, even worse, she tends to ‘check out’ of the conversation. She ‘sees’ their mouths moving but she’s so far away that she has no idea what it is they’re saying. She feels like a burden of negative energy so instead she chooses to be anti -social. It’s amazing that you can feel so incredibly alone yet have so many people around you.

She feels lonely because she is so disconnected from everybody. She is disconnected because she is carrying this secret and keeping it from them and she feels that every time she looks each of them in the eyes. But she’s afraid of their reaction if she told. She doesn’t know if she can handle the reaction. She doesn’t know if the ‘disconnect’ will ever be able to be reconnected…She’s mad and angry at her mother especially. She feels like she should have been there to protect her, love her child, not show hatred. She believes that she hates herself because she was not worthy of her own mother’s love.

She’s struggling with God, she’s so angry at him for letting this happen to her. She did what she was supposed to do … and where did it get her? She wonders where God was during those years she was being raped. Why he let it happen … why, why, why. Where were you God? Obviously you didn’t hear her cries, she wasn’t important.

The real ME gazes up from her tucked position. She’s waiting for a response … for a show of validation of her feelings, or any gesture of understanding. It doesn’t happen because the logical ME is fighting so hard to tell her to “shut the fuck up …” And so she silently returns to her tucked position but now it’s gotten cold on the beach, there are dark clouds descending over the horizon and the ocean waves beat louder against the rocks …

The real ME wants you to know that she hates being cold because it reminds her so much of being a helpless little girl. She takes her a stick and continues to doodle in the sand … she’s trying to remain calm and realizes that was the calm version of her feelings … but she knows that everyone reaches a breaking point …She’s so angry because she ALWAYS followed the rules. She always did what she “SHOULD” do: don’t be a rebel, you should follow the rules, you should go to college, you should get married, you should have kids, you should never talk about the “bad” things, you should put the past behind you, what’s done is done … you should, you should, you should … she’s so tired of it … where did it get her?…She DID what she SHOULD DO and look, look what happened. … don’t pile your God damn garbage about what she ‘should’ do … because it never got her anywhere …

Here’s the truth. the truth is that I HATE MYSELF. I do. i hateeeeeeeeeee myself. If you can't deal with hearing that ... then to bad, stop listening! If that means throwing up after every meal then that’s what I’ll do! If that means drinking myself silly, then so be it. I don't care what you think. it didn't happen to YOU! And you don’t and never will know how i feel. You can leave it all behind and go on and live and I’m stuck here in this “HELL” day after day. There’s no escape! And I hate it!

What does it feel like to be robbed of something? To be treated like a whore when you’re only 4 years old….to be told you are hated so many times you actually believe you are unlovable….to learn how to give a blow job years before you learn how to put on mascara…to not be able to tell anyone because you are too scared.I feel like my heart has been stabbed, cut open and then cut into a million little pieces for me to put back together. And I'm so scared …I am so scared of EVERYTHING ... no, you can't know what that feels like ... to feel like you're going insane. To wonder constantly what you did to cause all of it….to lie in bed, night after night, shivering in the cold, afraid to move .

In the words of Carol Burnett, “Thanks for the memories”, you bastard! Thanks a million! I want to say thanks … thanks for teaching me about “love” and “pain” and “humiliation” and “shame” and “vulnerability” and “trust”... for allowing me the opportunity to walk around for years letting me believe I was actually normal – that none of it affected me. Thank you, you bastard! Maybe I can repay the favor sometime? NO? Oh, that’s right, I won’t be able to because you’re dead… your pain has ended, but not mine! And for what? WHAT was it all for? Was it fun?! Was it fun to fuck a little girl... oh God I hate you so much ...And no one noticed? yeah everything is normal I’m just here covered in blood and vomit…. I’m the quiet one who overachieves and stares at you, teacher, begging you with my eyes to do something to help me! I’m tired. I am so tired of the mental exhaustion ... of the replaying of the trying to figure out .... I'm never GOING TO have answers. And never is a hard thing to deal with. The real ME feels a knot being pulled tighter in her stomach, she feels like she's going to explode ... she gazes up from her spot on the beach, it's cold now and very windy ... The logical ME looks down at her, and tells her to shut up! "Don't speak", she says ... and so the real ME tucks all this way back down inside her ...... curls up in her blanket, hugs her teddy bear, and hides her face. The beach is suddenly very calm again. She slowly gets up and turns back, walking back toward her scary, dark place with everything tucked neatly inside her again ....

That’s my *HAPPY PLACE*!

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