I sat in that bus, on my way to work, on my way to make a living and I saw you. I have no idea who you are, your name or age; but I know you are someone’s son, someone’s friend, and yet there you are, dying on the street. One person, one out of the dozens all around you – including me – stopped to help you. I sometimes wish I was the type of person to bang on bus doors, to cause a scene, to act in impulse, but I’m not, and I’m sorry. I should have ran to help him, help you. I watched from that seat on the bus as he checked for your pulse, but your skin was so grey I doubt he found one. No one else even seemed to care, I looked around the bus to see if anyone else felt the way I did, and not one person looked phased by the idea that you were dying. There were 5 other people on the side walk where your body laid and they didn’t do anything but stare and walk away. I tried so hard to hold it together, to act the way everyone else did, but I couldn’t. I cried for you, I cried because I know something happened to bring you to where you were, I cried because no one wants to get involved, no one wants to help. No one sees that you are just a kid with serious demons, just a person who struggles with memories of the past. You are so much more then an addict, you are so much more than a junkie, you are a human; you are here for a reason, you matter. It’s not okay, none of it. It’s not okay that someone or something hurt you to the point where you had to find a way to escape your pain. It’s not okay that you ended up addicted to a drug that ruined your life, it’s not okay that you have to use to live. It’s not okay that a drug dealer is making money off your addiction, or that they are cutting drugs with poison. It’s not okay that society labels you, but doesn’t help you. It’s not okay that you died. It’s not okay that people didn’t stop. None of this okay, none of it is acceptable. We need to stop building giant shopping malls, and invest in mental health, in better schools, in affordable homes, in people’s lives. My only hope is that you are now feee of pain. God has you in his arms now, along with all the other human souls that died because of greedy drug dealers, and shitty people. Society, you disgust me.
Like the bottom of the ocean, the vast night sky, it captivates me. Everything seems so silent, all around me the world is sleeping, dreaming. & here I am, lying awake in the darkness that surrounds me, trying to find ways to escape the nightmares you left me with.
How cruel it was for you to leave this world, without answers, without explanation, without saying goodbye. I am haunted by you, your death, and the people you left behind every night in my dreams – my nightmares. I see you, I feel you, I feel your pain, I watch you die, you come alive. You bring your son to a dinner I am at, and you disappear just as he tells me he’s happy your back. But you never come back, you’ll never come back, your gone. Your body is now in its final resting place, your soul is no longer in the physical world, you are no longer here. My heart breaks. My heart is broken. You had so much life left to live, didn’t you know that? Didn’t you know how many people loved you, how much we all cared about you? How much we miss you? How none of us can sleep, how much we wish we could have helped you. I’m sorry we didn’t, I’m sorry you suffered so much: I’m sorry you left.
I don’t know the reason. I doubtI ever will but an amazing friend, father, and man ended his life on October 31 2017, at the tender age of only 29 years old. He was my rock through so many of my depressive moments, and he was always so strong. I wish I knew in those final days what changed in him. I’m so embarrassed to say that I had stopped talking to him weeks before his death, and can’t help but blame myself for not being there for him. Shane Charles Whatley, I hope you are at peace; I miss you so much, I love you, thank you for taking the time to break down my walls and showing me that all men are not the same. I will remember you forever.♥️
you know that weird feeling you get when you are pushed under water and someone sits on you, the overwhelming sensation of panic that overwhelms you to the point that our heart begins to race and you begin to only see darkness. When you physically feel as though you are floating away and watching your body struggle to return to the land. You can see your friends laughing, unsure if they are actually laughing at the fact that they are hurting you, or if in their immaturity they don’t realize that you are actually suffering. Just as you begin to feel the light surround you, you feel your friend get off you and you are gasping for air above the surface.
It feels like a life time when you’re in that moment, yet you know it was seconds.
That’s what depression and anxiety feels like. In that moment you feel as though nothing you can do will help you escape that dark and terrifying place. Your heart rate elevates to the point where you can physically see your pulse under your skin and you begin to sweat and yet nothing is physically holding you down.
Depression makes it so I cannot looking forward to the future, it makes me see the world in a very dull and grey tone. I am simply surviving – not living. Depression eats away at me, it makes the small stuff seem giant and the big things – like death and change – seem enormous. It causes my hair to fall out,and my stomach to turn.
Anxiety feels like everyone is staring at you, it feels like you are trapped in a glass box with no escape, with no where to go. It makes my lungs constrict and my heart to beat so fast it feels as though it might explode. Anxiety feels like getting hit in the head with a volley ball and passing out, it feels like you are hot and cold all at once. My body shakes and I am unable to look at anyone, talk to anyone, or feel comfortable in my own skin.
Together they sink me.
It is in the minutes before I am fully awake that I think of you the most. I see you, and for just a moment in time, I feel as though your not so far away. It is in those first few moments of my day where I am able to feel whole again, where all the pieces that have been swept away somehow find their way back and I can breath. I am neither depressed nor anxious and I am able to enjoy the birds chirping and the smell of spring.
Those moments are but temporary; although, I wish they weren’t. I dread the milliseconds that pass and know that as soon as I move, as soon as my alarm goes off, I will be thrown back into the storm.
The storm that has become my life. The Dark thick clouds that seem to rest comfortably upon my soul ignite and spark, they drowned out the little bits of hope I managed to hang on to, they set fire to my heart with rods of lightening and cause fear with their loud thunderous screams. It feels as though I am in the middle of an empty field, with nothing but uprooted trees and fractured pieces of my heart around me.
And through those booming screams, I am overcome with the realization that I don’t even know who “you” are or why you seem to calm the storm.
Remember in elementary school how they would ask everyone what the wanted to be when they grew up, and we’d whole heartily exclaim that we wanted to be astronauts, lawyers, doctors, ballerinas, cowboys, and Princess’. We’d draw pictures of our future lives and proudly hang them up for the rest of the world to see, we’d dream of the day when we would be grown ups and have careers, and homes, and families.
I remember being a child and thinking that I could not wait for the day that I was an adult, when I could do what I want and do it whenever I chose. Little me never understood that you needed money to do things, and that for you to make money, you must work. I use to think as an adult I would have the ability to stand up for myself, that no one could tell me what I could or could not do, I would not have to listen to other people’s rules, or cower in fear that I would be punished. I never feared adults as a child, I respected my elders and worried about disappointing them, but I never feared adults the way I fear them now. I fear the “women” I work with because their catty remarks and unkind gossip is enough to leave me broken and crying by the end of a week, I fear the repercussion of speaking out against the way things are being taken care of at work, I fear that by speaking “out of turn” I will, without questioning, be out of a job. I fear that I will never be enough for the people that are ranked above me.
As a child, I use to dream of being a mother; of taking care of my home and children, while my husband was working hard for us. I dreamed about being a housewife. Its less disheartening to learn that your childhood career isn’t your right fit, for who do we know that grew up to be an astronaut or a Princess? But, a dream to be a mom and a wife is something that comes so easily to others, and for that dream to be crushed, to surpass your own ‘time line” you conducted in your head, is something that can easily destroy you.
I sit here trying to rack my brain, trying to figure out what I want to go in debt to be. People keep asking me if what I’m going to go to college for because being a sales associate is not what I ever wanted or dreamed to be – would you like a gift receipt feels like my own “would you like fries with that” and its equally demeaning. I usually shrug my shoulders when someone asks what I “want to be”, not because I’m trying to be rude, but because I don’t know. Because what I want to do with my life doesn’t come from a university or college, although it almost should, I would rather stay up all night with a sick baby, than stay up all night cramming for a midterm, and I would rather be exhausted from cleaning my house, and caring for my children than be emotionally drained from work. But without the ability to trust anyone, including myself, how do I expect to fall in love and be a wife and a mom?
My life is at a point, a low point, where it feels like nothing will ever get better, I’m angry, hurt, and ready to throw in the towel. I’m angry at the world, at the fact that I tried so hard to be a good person, to help others, and believed that maybe people would do the same to and for me. I’m angry because for years I asked God for strength and healing, only to come to the sobering realization that there isn’t a man above the clouds that somehow hears our silent prayers. He did not heal me when my grandma passed away, or walked beside me the night I was sexually assualted. He didn’t cure my dad, or help us cope, and he stole my best friend. If he’s the one who created life and death, why didn’t he help Jayda, why didn’t he listen to my cries and healed her? Where are these so called miracles? I went to church and Sunday school as a kid, because I wanted to. I talk to god, read the Bible, I believed. I changed my life, all in hopes that this imaginary person would heal me and yet all I’ve received is pain. I’m hurting, between the deafening loneliness that seems to surround me, the realization that I have no true friends, and the fact that I seem to only be enough for my family when I’m doing things for them. Im hurting because no matter what I do it never seems to be enough; Enough for me, enough for anyone.
And I know none of this is new, but nothing can change if nothing changes, and I don’t even know where or how to change.
I wish I knew what drove these people who rise up from the flames, what lies in them that allows them to take large leaps of faith, or courage and keep going. Maybe its something they’ve found, maybe they had to hit their lowest point in order to find a way to reach their highs; maybe the universe thinks I haven’t hit my bottom; or maybe subconsciously I don’t think I’ve hit my bottom. I don’t even know what my bottom is.. I feel like I’ve hit bottom so many times already.
I think, or rather maybe I’ve always know, it’s because I still hold on to the possibility that he might one day decide to love me.
Although I know that will never happen
I know that by holding on to this made up fairy tale I’m sabotaging a love that could be waiting for me out there. I compare everyone to him, I punish other people because of his words, I assume that everyone feels, thinks, and acts like him; I’m smarter than that though, smart enough to know that not all men are the same, not all men are him. Its difficult for me not to, though, after years of telling myself that he was right and that I was not enough for anyone, it kinda sticks with you, you know? I don’t know why I can’t just cut him out of my life like I have so many people, but I’m tired of hearing about other girls, I’m tired of always being the friend, i’m tired of being reminded that I can’t have the only guy I ever held on to for so long, I’m tired of doing this, 10 years is to long.. I’m just so tired of it all..
I need to reevaluate my priorities, my needs, my own happiness and maybe reach within myself and find a way to rise from this sorrow I’ve been wallowing in for far to long.
“From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”
– Psalms 61:2 NKJV
(even though I’m having a hard time believing in God.)
Until Next time xoxox
Change is the end result of all true learning
As an infant, we were taught to speak and our parents rejoiced when we half heartily mumbled the first mama or dada. We are encouraged as children to learn and expand our vocabulary, knowing that we may never use these long complicated words in everyday life, yet we are praised on our intelligence. Everyday we are expected to communicate verbally, whether it’s at work or in your personal life. But what happens, or what consequences are we faced with when the one thing we were encouraged and praise for becomes something that’s used to hurt other people? Why can’t we – as a generation – learn to speak and listen without blame, without judgement, without fear that our words, thoughts, or beliefs will be disregarded or used as a weapon in destroying our self worth. Better still, why are we so careless with the words we use?
We, as a whole, have a rather bad case of speaking without thinking, of judging without knowing, of disregarding what other people have to say if it is opposite of what we believe. I remember visiting my dads side of the family as a child and being told to be quiet, not to speak out of turn, and basically, to be seen but not heard. I never understood this, I never understood why I was being discouraged to speak around my family. Particularly because my mother’s family rejoiced in noise and talking and laughing. I couldn’t understand why I was told to be quiet in class, yet told to speak louder when asking or answering a question and I was unable to defer the two, especially at 6. I never understood, I still don’t understand, how its okay to be loud when people want you too and yet you are judged for being loud or “obnoxious” when you are having fun with friends. Why is the volume of one’s voice so important to other people? Why are we either labeled quiet or loud when we are simply just human? We are a generation, a human race, that sit behind computer or phone screens proclaiming that our beliefs trump those who disagree with us. We have bred wars, we have encouraged hate, we have teleported back in time where race is the most important thing of our lives. We have ruined the world out forefathers (and mothers) worked so hard to create. We have allowed ignorance to cloud our perspectives.
I digress often.
Perhaps I’m aging myself, but who remembers that little rhyme we’d say as children “Sticks and Stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me”? It was in those words that we minimalized the impact that insults an gossip truly hurts. The bruises your sticks and stones leave, the broken bones, the scrapes and cuts will heal, however words stay with you. My mothers’ favorite line was “they’re just words” and I suppose that was the way she was raised, but in my personal, and not so personal, experience words cause just as much, if not more, damage. Damage that is irreversible once they fester, damage that no cast or band aid or kiss can heal. We blurt out insults and judgements and think that a simple word – sorry – will take away that hurt, when in reality it doesn’t help. Sorry is just another word, another half-hearted compound of sounds that we have given too much power too. We are expected and encourage to act like nothing happened once a person says sorry, like the knives that were thrown into our souls didn’t cut us.
Our words have so much more power than people like to believe, or care to acknowledge.
Again, maybe its just me; The way that words and phrases that have been said to you stick with you. Like the first time you were rejected or the first time someone told you they loved you. The syllables and compounds that come together to form words replay in your mind, the entire memory engulfs you and you relive the happiness, excitement, or pain all over again. This happens a little too often to me and it cuts a little deeper each time. How can someone who claims that they care about you mutter the words they know will hurt you. Why would someone who “loves you” spew cruel and degrading insults at you?
I grew up with so many unstable people, so many people who spoke without thinking, and used my insecurities and downfalls against me. I grew up caring too much about the words people said, and now words are my biggest enemy. I am constantly fearful that I will be judged and ridiculed for the things I say, that I wont be deemed truthful. I fear these things based on my past, based on the things that happened to me, the way the people around me did things. But I know consciously, now that I have had the time to grow, that I cannot be consumed with what happened in the past. I cannot live in the rear-view mirror if I ever want to get ‘better’. If I ever want to be healthy and happy again I need to internally change. I know nothing is built in a day, but I have begun to deal with my past. I have been able to speak openly about the things that happened in my life, from the sexual assault that I allowed to ruin my life, to the loss of my dog and everything in between. I have been able to address and confront the people and words that have torn apart my soul. The things that use to be my dark secrets are now just another part of my journey and I am proud of that now.
Again, I find myself digressing from the topic I am trying to address.
I allowed a boy’s – he’s an adult now, but he’s still just a boy in my eyes – drunken words to fool me into thinking that I was enough for him. I allowed his broken promises and dishonest “feelings” to break me into 10,000 pieces and I never once confronted him about it, until recently. I finally stood up to the one person who always had the one up over me because I let him. I finally stood my ground and in a way, it back fired. By standing up for myself he is no longer in my life, by voicing my opinion and speaking up against him I lost who I thought was my best friend. Twice in one year I am faced with the sobering reality that I am without the two beings that knew me the best. Jayda and Peter knew everything about me, and I shared so much with both and to have neither one of them here for me or with me feels like my entire life has changed; and it has changed, I have changed. I realize now that by removing him from my life I have lifted a rock that was crushing me. I can breathe again, despite the pain. I use to think that our friendship could withstand any storm but failed to realize that he was the storm. His passive aggressive comments and mentally abusive tactics formed waves that engulfed me and pulled me back into the water no matter how hard I tried to escape. I thought that without him I would be lost, but it wasn’t until I was at my lowest that I found that he kept me lost. He spun me around in circles until I was weak and unable to see straight, and then left me to figure out where to go afterwards. His compassion was tainted with selfishness and pushed me away when I needed more, he dangled a dream in front of me just far enough away that I couldn’t reach and then gave a piece of it to any aboriginal, dark eyed girl he could see. He killed parts of me, parts of myself I use to like. I gave so much to someone because I fell for the words he spoke, because I believed fabricated tales of a life we could make together. I have learned to hard way that I must learn to fall for actions and not words. I fell to rock bottom, but it was there I was able to rediscover what I need and deserve.
Living through a traumatic or stressful experience hits people in different ways, we may suppress our feelings, we may deal with them and heal properly, or we may break.
[Trigger Warning: Sexual Assault]
I’ve talked about it a lot, wrote endless posts about ryan and what he did to me; but I’ve never really addressed the toll it took on me emotionally, physically and psychologically. When I was sexually assaulted I was thrown into a whirlwind of emotions. Not just because of what happened either.
I was 16, its been ten years and I haven’t been able to form a meaningful relationship since the night I lost sight of who I was. Beyond the crippling feeling associated with being assaulted, I hurled myself into the dark hole that has become my life. I thought that because my “friends” didn’t believe me, including the one person who was lying in that bed with me, no one would. My mom would say I was just drunk and because he was native people would assume that I asked for it, or perhaps that I lead him on. Those thoughts often run through my mind, maybe I did lead him on, but whether I lead him on or not I said no. I pushed his hands away and I said no. I wanted to sleep, that’s all and so I was the only one who convinced him to get out of the bed my “friend” and I were sleeping in, while two grown men watched on. I was the one who got him to the couch and then ran to the bedroom to lock the door. I was alone from that night on.
I suppressed myself, I suppressed the memories of that night as much as I could. I tried with all my energy to ignore the pounding in my head and the triggers and memories that enclosed around me. Until I couldn’t take it anymore, until the walls around me began to close in and I avoided people and places that he knew and went to. I avoided the world. I lived in a make believe world on the internet, where I could pretend I was happy, full of life and unharmed. I flirted and engaged with men on the internet, I took pictures that showed a side of me that wasn’t really there. I did not feel sexual, I did not feel like a normal 17 year old, or 18, or frankly today an almost 26 year old. I lost all need for intimacy and for sex, I began feeling as though I was broken, that he had turned off a switch most humans (and dolphins) have. It was hard enough when I was just living with the fact that my ex boyfriend came out after I lost my virginity to him but now I was broken goods, I was used and abused and afraid to tell anyone. I couldn’t tell my friends that the reason I dropped out of school and couldn’t come back was because being in that school, the school his picture hung on the wall of, was more difficult then I imagined. And I couldn’t explain to them why, at times, I was unreachable. Why I went months and years before I would work up the courage to see them again. They did not know me, this me, and I didn’t give them the chance to. I hid away so much that even my mom, dad and sister rarely saw me for more than 10 minutes. I stayed in my dark room for days, with my laptop and my fake smile photos and slept all day. I often thought about ending it all, it would be easier, it would be peaceful and I would be free. I would be free. Over the span of 6 years I watched as the world turned and aged around me and I felt as though I was trapped in the same place and time I was shortly after that night. I lived in a constant state of fear, fearful of being touched, being within two feet of a male. I was fearful of someone seeing it in my eyes that my world had gone black. I began to lash out in anger, I banged on doors trying to break them down, I told my pregnant sister I was gonna kick her in the stomach, I resented the world. I sat alone in my room and saw pictures and videos of other people living life, having babies, falling in love and I hated them all. I hated the fact that because I didn’t know how to heal, I didn’t have the courage to face what had happened that night, I wasn’t able to move on. I wasn’t able to fall in love, or trust someone. I felt stripped of the one thing all these girls were taking advantage of – being a mother. I can’t proclaim that it was only his touch made me this way, because there are girls and guys out there that have been sexually assaulted who have sex more, have kids from different dads, but my own self hatred over what I allowed to happen that night, the fact that I didn’t trust anyone to talk about it, I allowed his memories and his touch eat me alive and change the person I was suppose to become.
I realise now that the sexual assault was the first of many things I couldn’t heal from.
I didn’t know how to be happy, or how to move on from things, I still don’t. I didn’t know how to put my anger and pain aside to be happy for my sister and my friends when they had their first bundle of joys. I wasn’t able to put aside my selfish emotions long enough to be genuinely happy for anyone. I lost sight of my own health and I gained weight I still can’t lose. I hated myself more with everyday that passed, every pound I gained, every night I laid in bed and visions of that night circled in my mind. I just assumed I was depressed. I assumed a lot of things, okay I assume a lot of things. It hasn’t changed. Nothing has changed. I am still that 16 year old girl who was to scared to do anything about the night I was ruined. I speak about it, but I’ve never confronted the people that were involved, I suppressed my voice on subjects that needed to be expressed in a hopes that I would never be put in the position where I wouldn’t be believed – because I never told people my thoughts, my opinions, I never expressed my voice. I allowed the boy who molested me add me on facebook, and while he had no idea how broken I had become with every message he sent me asking me to hang out, I marinated in the pain. With every message the pain sunk deeper into me, with every “wanna grab a coffee” the memories and smells and feelings rushed back to me. I couldn’t move, I cried, I froze, I wanted to scream but had no way of explaining it to my mom had she heard. I cut myself hoping it would stop, but he still continued to message me. I finally blocked him from ever messaging me again, in hopes that if I was not readily available he could not make his way into my life. But I was wrong I was wrong to think that just because I was able to block him on social media I was blocking him from my life. He started messaging me on any form of social media or dating sites (which I made in hopes of finding a person who would help me heal) reopening a healing wound. He referred to that night as a little mistake or something he didn’t remember and my entire body shook in anger, in fear, in realizing that he will never admit to being or doing wrong. And I know that I must forgive someone who will never apologize and I must grow from this experience but with every minute that goes by, and every memory that resurfaces I lose hope and manifest in this anger and pain.
People have often asked and wondered why losing Jayda was so much more traumatic for me than losing my dad, and I tell them because she was always here. I tend to leave out that she was my comfort, she calmed me down and kissed(licked) away my tears. I would snuggle up with her and stroke her soft fur and it felt safe. I felt like no one and nothing could hurt me in that moment. That’s why it hurts so much. I am now without the only thing that kept me alive in the darkest days. I stayed alive because I didn’t want Jayda to be alone, I am still here because of her; and I failed to keep her here. But that’s a whole other story. I guess it was the fact that she would lay with me and I had someone who always wanted to be next to me, even to the point that she would sleep inside a sweater or zip up jacket. I guess what I’m trying to say is that I miss having someone close to me, and I think that is the worst part of all of this. The fact that being physically and emotionally close to someone scares me beyond belief now. I use to love to be close to people, to hug my friends, to interlock arms while we walked anywhere, hug people, be near people; and now the only person I get that close to are my nephews and sometimes my mom. I miss the feeling of a strong, steady arm holding me, that sense of security and love. Now if an arm goes near me I flinch in remembrance of that night. I forget what its like to look into the eyes of a man and feel love, and the gentle touch of a hand while watching a movie or driving. I miss being able to feel calm in the presence of a man. I miss being kissed, I miss the rush that goes with new love, and those feelings that could almost make you sick. I miss love.
I know I need to face the people and things that hurt me, I know I need to stop living in the past and suppressing who I am, but knowing and doing are two drastically different things and I don’t know how to fix the way my brain has adapted to my trauma. I don’t know how to fix the scar the molestation left on my soul, or how to love another man when I’ve always been hurt.
I pray to you in hopes that you can lead me towards the path of healing. That one day I will be free of the pain that started in the hands of a boy who was lost. I pray for the strength to forgive him for his wrong doings, to move on from the darkness of my past, and to grow into someone who perceivers through the pain.