The car waits at the intersection way too long
The rhythm of the blinker keeps tick tick ticking
I come to a stop on yellow
And drive just a little too slow
But, it’s all to make the drive go smoothe
Check the mirrors a bit more than is expressly necessary
Don’t honk when that red truck cuts me off
Terrified by the swerving semi
White knuckles on big black hands
But it’s all to make the drive go smoothe
Glancing at you out of the corner of my eye
While streetlights paint your sleeping face
Not even singing when my song comes on
Filling my heart as each mile passes
Whispered “I love you”s under my breath
But it’s all I can do to make the drive go smoothe smoothe.
I got my hair done on Tuesday and it feels great. You know that feeling where you don’t feel like yourself unless you’rein your favorite sweatshirt or jeans or everything just isn’t right until your make up is done? Well that’s me. I love my braids. When I picture myself as a successful person/writer it’s with braids. Maybe it’s weird but, it just makes me feel at home in my own skin. For me having them in is self care.
I have spent a lot of time this year on taking care of myself. Trying to lose a bit of weight, incorporating a skincare routine and, even bought a watch for trying to work through the ADHD time slippage. I want to come out better from this terrible year.
Self-care is so important. I know myself and without it I kind of just subsist in the world. The depression hits and I just spend all day playing games or something just to try to relax. I’m not saying videogames aren’t effective self-care but, I think for me and just the types of games I play there just isn’t always that same sense of accomplishment I get from just making sure I did two face masks this week. I’ve realized besides writing it kind of just makes me feel like I got something done and I am overall better for the ten minutes I took to do it.
I began throwing out a bunch of the old mess in my room leftover from a previous person and donated some clothes too. It’s odd sometimes what throwing a bag of trash out will do for your mind. ( I should probably clean up more often. It’s not gonna happen but, I probably should.) I have been feeling a little freer in this past week and I’m hoping I can keep up the momentum. Keep changing enough small things to make me a stronger more well-rounded person. To me, my self-care is trying to improve minuscule things over and over again to eventually create a chain reaction of positive change.
I’m going slowly insane. I mean I’m glad I’ve got my job but, the amount of people who don’t seem to care about the pandemic makes me want to pull my hair out. I just don’t know what needs to be done so that people won’t come into my store with their entire families… It all just makes me want to scream. Why don’t they care about being sick?
It’s not enough that they don’t care about themselves but when we walk away because they’re too close they follow us like it’s no big deal. They squeeze in behind us and reach over us like we’re mannequins. I’m so tired of it. If we get infected in a great enough number the store closes.
We had our first confirmed case at the store this week. There’s no telling who could have been infected it’s made a huge change at work. People who were unworried before are now wearing masks and gloves and actually staying away from each other. Things we were always supposed to be doing but, we foolishly thought we were safe.
My friends range from essential to laid off and they’re all worried about me. Somehow that’s not really the attention I like. I feel bad for those that lost their jobs and I feel lucky to have mine but, somehow the apocalypse isn’t great for my mental health. Who would have thought?
Sorry about being late on the book but, you already know the score. Things are looking a bit better for me right now and I think I need this way too much not put my all in. Thanks for being patient I won’t make you guys wait too much longer.
She lures me in,
Bright and shy,
I caution myself
Too wary to try,
She bites full lips
And I lick mine.
Her eyes make contact
and dart away.
I follow them
I’m drawn in
Predator and Prey
I slink closer
my body reacts
About to pounce
There’s no turning back
I bite in
Taking what I deserve.
Our bodies tangle
I can’t tell where we begin
This is it!
What I’ve waited for…
My fly wide
I left myself open
She knew I would
I sink my fangs in
But there is no purchase
Red Tide flows
She lifts me from off my feet
With practiced ease.
I’m on my back
she pins me down
I whimper and beg
I see my reflection
In hungry bright eyes
She lured me in
To my demise
It’s this remarkable word that we almost never get. Things don’t end and tie off in a neat bow. Not like they do in fiction. Everything can work out in books, tv, or movies but, IRL things don’t always end that way. And even when we do get closure and everyone is an adult about everything why does that not ever seem like enough?
Why does even knowing it’s over not change the way you feel? Why doesn’t cutting them out make things better? I guess because you still care, right? You want them to be happy even if that happiness isn’t with you. At least that’s what I want to say. I want most of my exes (ex-friends included) to be happy. I just selfishly want them to miss me too. I don’t know if this is good advice but, maybe if there’s someone you’re curious about (who didn’t leave you hurting or ruin your life) may just check on them. Just tell them you miss them. Just a little bit. Maybe something good will come from it.
I recently read… well listened to Turtles All the Way Down and it got me thinking not just about the main characters but, about what my mental health means to me. I’ve gotten so used to talking about my anxiety and my depression that it doesn’t really bother me to bring it up in normal conversations.
Don’t worry I’m not that guy who brings it up every chance they get as if to say that I’m going through these things somehow gives me a perspective someone else doesn’t have, but… to connect with people. When I see someone in pain or hurting I can’t help myself but, want to step in. Now, this trait has gotten me into a lot of trouble because used to sacrifice my mental health just to try and cheer someone up. I say used to as if it’s been a while but, I think it’s only been a few months now so I don’t know if I’ll be falling off the wagon again but, hopefully, I can keep the chip this time.
I would expend so much of my energy giving a damn about somebody else just because they do or have made me feel good one day, that I’d be a wreck because I hadn’t spent time on myself. And often times when I’d ask for what I needed from them I’ve been trying to stop that now.
For a long time it took me forever to just love myself now I’m working on treating myself better… It’s been a long road and even though I feel better I don’t know if I’ve made the strides I think I have. I won’t really know until I’m faced with the same situations… But, I can see the people who really need help and at least not put myself in the same position I’ve put myself in before. So hopefully that leads to something new.
So anyways, Turtles All the Way Down paints interesting characters who try their best to rise above their own problems. The main character is so interesting and seeing inside her head is both frightening and beautifully complex. What I love about John Green’s writing is it’s witty and careful and the people are actually people none of them are exactly who they appear to be. I’m not surprised by how much I liked it, only surprised by just how much his work could still impact me. I think I’ll be a lifelong fan.
I’m confident in a lot of things about me. If you ask anyone close to me they’ll probably tell you how I can talk about myself for hours. Which is probably true. I am not afraid to talk myself up. I don’t mind putting my best foot forward and I think people actually respond fairly well to it. Am I a little cocky? Probably. Does that make me a bad person? I don’t think so. But to get to my point there are a couple things I’m not too confident in.
I don’t think I have much to offer people. It’s probably the last dregs of that teenage low self-esteem angst but, I’m not sure how much I add to people’s lives. I mean they tell me they like having me around but, everyone lies. People get into relationships (all types) because they want something from someone else. Whether it’s companionship or because the person is smart and they can help me get ahead or do good on a math test. Whatever that is they offer something. I don’t know what my thing is and I overcompensate.
I try to be a big part, helping them through their pain and troubles. A shoulder to cry on when they’re in need. If they need something they can always count on me. I push myself way too hard to be available and ready with the right thing to say. Not that I’m bad at that part but, it weighs on me. There’s sometimes when I’m an absolute mess and there’s no one to talk to. They tell me their problems and I try and fix them. It’s easy not because it keeps me away from my own problems because it makes me feel useful. I like feeling useful. I like knowing that no matter how low I get someone’s life would be worse without me in it.
Does that make me selfish? Probably. Do I tell them? Yes. I tell them that I’m self-centered that I do most of these things for myself. Do they believe me? No, they just think I’m being humble. If there’s anything you learn from reading this blog, other than the fact that I’m an overthinking basket case, it should be that any bit of demureness that comes from me is due to uncertainty.
The other thing is my writing, it’s not as interesting as the earlier topic, not much to analyze here. I guess I’m the same as everyone else here. We’re all just trying to get through the next project and hopefully, one day write a hit. I know I’m not alone in wanting this so bad you lie awake at night hoping just hoping that it’s good enough. That the right person thinks highly enough of it and tells all their friends about it. That it somehow gets on the right person’s blog and they read about it and love it. And everyone is just clamoring to get their hands on your book like it’s the only one out there. They read it all in one night or savor it over a week. They love your world so much they dream up their own characters to fill it. (Deep breath. I actually did this while writing this.)
I want what every writer wants. What every person wants. To be loved for what I bring in the world. To be admired for what I can do. And to be cherished by the people who love me.
PS. Sorry, this is so heavy but, I had a lot get off my chest.
Okay so the other day a friend who I think of as rather dear to me said I don’t respect anyone. This was after I had said something vulgar while in the break room and the manager came over and says something like “I don’t really care what you say but maybe tone it down because someone in here might be offended.” I look around and one of my older co-workers gathers her things and head out the door.
My friend shows me something she wants to post on Facebook I say she should go for it. Social media is about you and expressing how you feel. She she can’t she’s got family in there. I say “So?!” She says I really respect them. And we return to the tell tale phrase “You don’t respect anyone.”
I immediately try and defend myself. “I respect everyone.” It’s not true at least as far as I can tell but I couldn’t help being defensive. Give me a break right. So they obviously call me out on it.
Vulnerability isn’t something I worry about. It’s something I practiced. I don’t have any issue being open with my feelings. I learned that being open and honest with yourself would lead less stress and anxiety. I have always felt everything on an increment of ten. My feelings are loud and explosive. I figured once I got a handle on what I was feeling then I would never rule me. Learning this I am far more myself today than, I have ever been.
The only way I know I know how to write is by pouring my soul out in the things on the page. In a way, it makes me feel alive. It’s cathartic and it’s freeing in a way, talking about it with others ever was. I don’t feel judged. That people are weighing their experiences against mine. I think writing through your pain heals me in ways I didn’t always understand until now.
I still get anxiety and I’m still depressed at times but, it’s helped me a lot not only to talk about how I’m feeling but, to write it. I’ve found things out about myself just saying things aloud. I realized that my ability to honest with the things that hurt me has only made me stronger.
Like most people, I’ve lost friends throughout my life. But some have really stood the test of time. They remember who I was before and how much I’ve changed they’ve seen me at my best and worse. I don’t think I’d rather have anyone else at my back.
My best male friend who shall only be known as The Editor did so on my first book has been the only person who I can talk most about my book with. Having read it and given me ideas on how to make it better has made him instrumental in my development as a writer.
There were questions he’s asked about the world of the Aftermath Collection, that I hadn’t actually thought of. He’s done more for the world building than any flights off inspiration I’ve had. I wouldn’t have come this far this quickly without him.
Friend 2 is probably the person I trust most in the world. No matter what I’ve come clean about to her she’s never judged me. I don’t know anyone with a bigger heart and better judge of character. The fact that she spends time with me, makes me believe that I might actually be worth it.
They’ve been with me through a lot and I will never take them for granted. I don’t think I’d be anywhere near this far in life or in the career I want without them. They’ve taught just taught me so much.