Sometimes you need to just tell the truth and move on. Sometimes you do exactly what you’ve been told not to and the burn from when it blows up in your face is exactly what you needed.
Sometimes you aren’t who you are for just a moment and that changes everything.
I’m touched but still alive.
Someone offered to road trip with me down to Jersey to visit my father’s grave. I’ve never been before. I don’t know what I’m expecting to gain from the experience but I’m sick of pushing this down to the bottom of my priority list. Seven years I’ve been telling myself “oh I’ll just go the next time I have a break”. But the truth is that I couldn’t drive there by myself and not have another beating heart nearby afterwards.
The heat rises from the middle of my back, up my spine, to the base of my neck. Prickly sensation makes me retract into myself. I cannot get small enough to block it out. My jaw tightens. My chest is being punched. I’m being threatened.
But when I look around there is no danger. The trigger is so damn mundane. It’s silly really, I’ll later explain.
I want to stay in this moment of pure physical discomfort. It is so much more preferable than what happens when language enters the picture. That’s when the true self-hate begins.
So I shake. I heave. Tears. Rage. My body betrays.
But the sneaky voice whispers the first question and cackles as what was once only fragile turns to destroyed.
I regenerate and swallow hard. Back track, pick up those words and pretend they never left my mouth.
Stare at that trigger until I’m numb. I know this will all happen again.
I’m in constant pain and it’s hard to ignore when another sense is being overwhelmed. But one can’t exist forever leaping from one extreme to another. So I languish, bury my face in blankets and plan my escape.
I’m not allowed such easy ways out. I’m a good girl. I’m held to standards. I get it. I’ve got to be tough, got to keep moving forward and shut the fuck up.
Even the most dedicated movie viewers will only watch the same film over and over again in a finite number of iterations, and I’m not exactly sporting a fan club.
So when someone does take the time to engage I’m lost in a sea of self-depricating statements and wildly inappropriate overshares in a desperate move to capture their attention. But in the age of all technology in your hand at all times, I cannot compete. I’m physically there but not the most imposing affair.
(I thought we took out the chess board to make moves, not stare at the pieces in silence.)
Left, right, back, front, sideways, upside down… no relief from the throbbing hurt. But I’ve got to get back out on the ice and play.