Self Protector: An Open Letter

Disclaimer: Strong language linked to discrimination and bullying as well as instances of abuse as well as self-harm.

Today, as I worked through my daily routine, my mind was not completely present with my body after thinking about where I’ve been, where I am, and where I’m going. As I thought in my mind about how I truly got this far with the mental state that I’ve carried for the past 30 plus years, it really brought tears to my eyes as I separated my mindsets and read myself a letter in my head about my survival.

At that moment today, my “self protector” was speaking to me.

Dear D,

Ever since you were little, you were always something special in this world. There was something unique about you that no one could pinpoint and no one could duplicate or imitate. Your mind was filled with so much imagination and so many hopes and dreams surrounded you.

However, to those that did not understand, they brought you down. They made you feel weak. They made you feel small. Even though you did not know why they made you feel this way, each instance chipped a little bit of that innocent world down around you. They called you names that, at first, you did not understand.

“Darkie…”

“Turd…”

“Nigger…”

“Faggot…”

“Sissy…”

“Monkey…”

“Queer…”

“Worthless…”

“A waste of God’s given space…”

Just a few of the daily shots thrown at you for no reason whatsoever. I watched you as you took them all in. You started to build your wall and would cry in the corner when no one noticed. These words and verbal shots starting playing like a record over and over again in your head.

Yet I watched over you.

I watched as you grew older and as your world slowly dissipated to nothing in your eyes, you slowly grew numb of emotion. You yearned for the attention to just belong somewhere and was manipulated into false forms of it — first by the relative of someone who your mother trusted to take care of you while she worked several hours a day just to make sure that the basic essentials were available to you in the house, then followed by bullies and even some people within the family that you trusted, yet they made you feel the same as those around you. I understand you were truly thinking to yourself, “What the hell is wrong with me?”

Yet I still watched over you.

As you moved into your high school years, it was at that point that I saw you mentally give up. You didn’t care about the world or anything around you. You didn’t care about building a future for yourself. You didn’t care to think about the pending legacy before you. Instead, you just cared for it all to end. You would walk around either angry or just sad, rebelling against anyone and anything that didn’t think the same as you. Every night, I watched you come into your room and not come out, locked inside with your thoughts.

Even though you didn’t know it, I still watched over you.

Then your universe started growing dark. Dark thoughts took over and suddenly there was a form of you that I knew if it was brought out to the world, it would bring concern to everyone in the world. Suddenly, thoughts of sharp objects and great heights came into the picture. The thoughts would fill quickly throughout your mind as the what-if’s played over and over again. You resisted as much as you could, but I had to hold back to test you. However, you succumbed to the desires of the end and completely lost yourself.

That’s when I stepped in.

Thought you may not know it, I have been with you throughout all of your highs and lows. Going through your mental struggles is not easy, I know. However, you are not alone. I am here to carry you through. You have so many that do truly love you and care for you, but at the end of the day, you have to care for you.

I will care for you. It is my duty to care for you.

When you are feeling small and down, I will use my strength to get you through the storm. When you are hearing those past thoughts replay in your mind, I am there to revert you back to higher ground. When you feel as though the end is near, I am there to guide you towards that extension in the road to keep you going. I am your self protector, reminding you of all of the good that is inside you. Reminding you of that world that you left behind that still lives in you if you just let it. Reminding you that there is so much of the world left for you to explore. Reminding you that you have so much to offer the world, even if you feel like what you have is not enough. What may be small to you may end up being a lifesaver to another.

You are greatness. You are beautiful. You are loved. You truly matter.

I will always be watching you and will never let you down. Believe in me as much as I believe in you and we will introduce to the world the best self that we can be.

Love yourself as much as your self protector loves you.

Always with you,

Jaysen, Your Self Protector

I share to you these thoughts today as the protector in me has given me much inner strength, helping me to know that every day is cherished and I am not alone. I hope that this letter helps out those that are going through the same thing. Remember that you have those supporting you, cheering for you, and loving you all around you, but most importantly, you have the self protectors within you carrying you through everything in life and helping you to be your best self possible.