30DOW: Day 30

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I’m sitting here in awe that I have for once in my lifetime completed something that I began. For the past thirty days I have sat down every day and found a way to express my thoughts, feelings, dreams, and memories. My writing over the past month might not have been that good, but I stuck to it. Some days I had to post two blog posts because I fell behind, but there was inspiration for every single day.

I’m carrying on the #NaBloPoMo challenge throughout the month of December and I hope that I can stay inspired. I’ve noticed that the NaBloPoMo challenge has helped me to be more observant of not just everyone and everything around me, but also of myself as well. A lot of the days that I wrote helped me to release emotions that I would have otherwise tried to push down inside of me. I didn’t have a specific theme in mind when I started the challenge, I just sat down and wrote. And that’s amazingly awesome to me.

 

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30DOW: Day 29

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In These Moments

All I can do is breathe and believe that everything will eventually be okay. I have been trying to tell myself that I won’t let the anxiety rule me, I refuse to let fear lead me to make bad decisions. I am choosing to stand my ground for what I know is right. I understand the consequences of this choice, but either way, things will work out in the end.

In these moments I try to remember all of the good in my life. I try to surround myself by those that I love and that love me. I try to tell myself that I am okay, that we are okay, that it will all be okay. Sometimes this works, there’s more times that it doesn’t. But still I try.

In these moments I try to stay grounded in the present. I try to be thankful for all that I have, all that I have accomplished, as little and insignificant as it all may seem. I am thankful for my freedom even though sometimes it still feels very much so as though I am still trapped. I know that one day I will truly be free and for that, I am thankful.

In these moments I try to remember that tomorrow is another day. I know the journey isn’t over yet. I still have such a long way to go, but I know I can make it. I’ve already been traveling for so long and I am used to the obstacles that hinder my progress. I will not give up.

In these moments I think of all of this and so much more and try so hard not to let the anxiety overcome me. I won’t deny that there are many days that I pray things will be easier right now instead of having to ride out yet another storm, alas that is not the way of my life.

In these moments I will take life as it comes to me and remember that tomorrow is another day. I will continue to tell myself that in the end everything will be okay and if it’s not okay, it isn’t the end.

 

30DOW: Day 28

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All of this daily writing has sparked my creativity. I scroll through my emails and discover an upcoming art challenge by a fellow blogger and decide to sign up for it. I  tell a close friend about it who tells me, “You can’t run from it forever.”

I pretend to not know what she’s talking about.

“First it was NanoWrimo, then it was NaBloPoMo, now an art challenge? You’re trying to fill the silence, the emptiness.”

And maybe she’s right. But what business of it is hers?

“You haven’t even drawn anything in forever,” she continues. “You should just stick to your writing. If you take on another project, you’ll end up neglecting your writing.”

I stare at her and wonder if she’s been speaking to my mother. Instead I rummage my closet for one of the many empty and half-empty drawing pads I know I’ve seen laying around. It seems they have all mysteriously disappeared. Instead of taking this as a bad omen as I usually would, I vow to buy a blank one tomorrow after work.

I realize that despite the fact that it’s been a very long time since I’ve drawn anything, I am excited. I know I’m not the worst artist in the world, definitely not the best, but sometimes I luck out and am able to create something. On top of this I have decided to carry on the NaBloPoMo challenge and blog throughout December. And maybe she’s right now that I think about it. Maybe I am trying to fill that emptiness that I can’t explain away. Definitely not silence though. The noise in my mind is far too loud to just write or draw away. My brain won’t stay still for even a moment, the anxiety won’t allow it.

Drinking used to help quiet the roar in my head, but I’ve long since given that up as well. Some days I miss it. Some days I wish for it. Most days I pray I’ll never see another bottle of alcohol again in my lifetime. And so I cling to my writing and decide to rekindle my passion for drawing and absorb myself in my fictional worlds and horror movies and try to convince myself that this isn’t running this is art in the making.

30DOW: Day 27

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The Game

Just trust me, he says. When have I ever been wrong?

And he’s right of course. He’s always been right. But he doesn’t understand this game. He doesn’t understand the rules and he doesn’t understand the consequences. I’ve lost this game once before and it wasn’t a game that I could just dust my hands off after and walk away from. It was a major loss and it left me damaged. And now here I am again. About to lose.

He looks so calm, cool and in control, but I don’t think he’s ever played this game before. He is pretending to be knowledgeable in it though saying he knows a guy who taught me how to play.

I don’t want to play the game at all, I’ve played this game too many times before, I already know I cannot afford the stakes. But now it is too late. I’m already seated at the table and the dice are about to tossed. I look at my wager and try to swallow the lump in my throat as I fight back the tears.

Everything I hold dear to me is on that table and I close my eyes and say a prayer as the dice roll in front of me.

30DOW: Day 26

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Strangers

“You wouldn’t say those things to me if you knew where I come from,” I say to him.

I don’t mean for the words to come out, but they do. And it’s the truth afterall. Immediately I regret what I’ve said. Now there will be questions, he will look at me strangely, I think he thinks I’m just trying to impress him, but I’m not. I’m trying to warn him, before my big mouth and my anger and frustration and depression and anxiety is unleashed all at once on him.

“And where do you come from,” he says, half amused, maybe half disgusted.

But how can I tell him? It’s a shameful place. It’s full of pain and sadness and, well, nothing good. I surprise myself by realizing that I want him to know. I want him to know Me.

Not many people have been able to handle my truths. They pretend to care in the beginning, but once I start to tell them they cringe, they shy away. I’ve lost a lot of friends because of my truths. But I think he could handle it. The way he carries himself, the way he works, the way he speaks. His every move is calculated and I know it’s because he is driven- driven to prove himself, maybe driven to make up for something.

I heard sadness and exhaustion and defeat in his voice once. It frightened me. He’s always so calm and cool and in control. I tried to tell myself it was because he was having a rough day, because he was tired of the b.s. in his personal life. Sometimes I wonder if he ever gets tired of life in general. Are people ever really so calm as often as he is?

Sometimes I dream about him. In my dreams he is gentle, tender yet somehow still guarded. He is afraid, just as I am afraid, of letting someone in- of letting someone too close. I can tell it’s exhausting for him to begin new things, just as it is exhausting for me to begin new things. Opening up is so hard for us. But in my dreams, the way we dance tells me he could open up to me- that he has considered it.

Back here in the real world we haven’t spoken for several months. He seems happy these days and I am happy for him. Sometimes it makes me a bit sad that we will never find out more about one another- he about where I come from and I about where he is going. I think we would contrast each other quite nicely. But once upon a time our paths crossed and maybe that was all it was destined to be.

30DOW: Day 25

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Intuition

Laying in a ball, the anxiety crushing, the anger building. I’m feeling lost. A fight between doing what I am afraid not to do and what I am told is right, I am leaning towards the fear based option.

These types of decisions are difficult for me. I am too easily frightened by threats because I know all too well how quickly threats can be brought to life, into punishment and pain. I tell myself I need to do the right thing, but what is the right thing?

My head and my heart are at war, always at war. I want to trust and believe that everything will turn out okay but my anxiety will not allow it. I listen to my anxiety too much and my brain tells me it is the truth. I believe things that aren’t happening, things that I dream into existence. I drive myself crazy with these things.

Is it because I am a dreamer? Is it because I’m a writer? Someone close to me once told me that my imagination gets away from me because I spend too much time in my head. Maybe this is true but at least if this is truly the case I have no one to blame but myself.

 

 

30DOW: Day 24

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Overflow

You need to be more like me, she says to me while she covers the mouthpiece of the phone to yell at her partner that no, they aren’t going to their friend’s house for dinner. I swear to God, she says to me in a low voice, I feel like I’m a broken record saying the same things over and over again. I didn’t sign up for this. I didn’t ask to be a parent again so late in life and that’s basically what it’s like, it’s like I’m a parent again. 

She goes on to tell me all the ways that I need to be like her, I need to not think about anyone in my life but the kids. I need to go back to school and get a degree. I need to come and visit her more frequently if I’m not going to move closer to her because between her daughter and my father, she is losing her mind. Besides, no one could ever love me like my family, she tells me. Family is stronger than any other relationship.

When the Mister gets home I feel conflicted and sad. I ask him “We’re going to grow old and gray together, yeah? That’s still the plan?”

He shrugs out of his jacket and lays his keys on the kitchen counter. He eyes me warily. Usually when I start asking these questions it’s because I’m not feeling well, not feeling like myself.

“Yeah,” he says, crossing the room and plopping down into the recliner with me. “That’s the plan,” he says with a smile and a kiss to my forehead.

“But the kids are a handful,” I blurt out and before I can stop myself, reason after reason flows like a neverending river from between my lips and I can feel the tears stinging behind my eyelids.

“Stop,” he says firmly yet gently at the same time.

He pulls me into him and strokes my hair while he hums softly.

“I’m sorry,” I whisper into his chest, my tears soaking his shirt.

“It’s fine,” he says softly and continues humming. “You’re fine and we’re fine.”

And I believe him. I know we’re okay and will always be okay. Sometimes just listening to my mother makes me anxious and even though I know I shouldn’t indulge her so much, even though I know sometimes it’s no good for my anxiety how can I tell her to keep her problems to herself? I cannot, so I turn her problems into my problems and then my problems into the Mister’s problems. It’s like a stack of cups filled with water, constantly overflowing and draining down into the cup beneath it, each cup filling up with another worry until all of the cups are full and overflowing onto the table.

But her worries are not my worries because I am loved in my life by people whom I also love tremendously. I am not her and this is not her life. I might be making it up as I go along, but it has always been my story to write.