I feel like my heart is breaking.
I feel like I would do anything, ANYTHING, to turn back time and go back to Tennessee.
I am so frustrated at the lack of the proper wording to explain how I am feeling that I want to throw this fucking computer against a wall.
Grief of the heart. A filling so full that it shattered my existence.
I ache that it’s over. I was not prepared for what it was going to mean. How completely those seven days would change me.
Last night I dreamed of death, though I can’t remember the details. Only that today my mouth is full of my own mortality. And a fear that I will never have an experience like that again before I die. So devastated that it’s over. I see all of their faces, I hear all of their laughter. Val. Jonathan. Ryan. Claire. Milly. Catalina. Eli. Mary. Elizabeth. Kari. Julia. Susan. Stella. Sarah. Hannah. Julie. Sebastian. Erin. Heather. Casey.
I have hungered so long. Since I understood what passion and love were. The taste of it on my tongue. I have chased and searched and wished and ached for an emotion I couldn’t name or even do a good job of describing….the want to be understood. The want to be welcomed and recognized and embraced as a whole.
I have always been an outsider. As a kid I existed with the knowledge that my parents didn’t really like me. Maybe they loved me — I know my mother would have a fit if she read this, staunchly denying she felt anything but warmth for me— but they didn’t like me.
I had problems. I had issues. I was an inconvenience. I was sexually abused by my paternal grandfucker. Better put, my soul was raped and torn open before I even knew what a fucking soul was. My brain blocked all the memories.
But PTSD showed up in other ways. Telling kids at daycare that when I got home that day, I was going to kill myself. The daycare person, so perfectly named Daisy, told my mother. I remember her rage on the drive home. Her absolute fury at the embarrassment. WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU? was like the anthem of my youth.
At ten I stopped sleeping at night.
The sun would go down and senseless anxiety would set in. Awake all night. Crying most nights. I didn’t know why. How could I know why? If children recognized PTSD from sexual trauma they would certainly say so because kids are FUCKING HONEST. My mom sure thought I knew why though. WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?! quickly coupled with YOU’RE NOT TELLING ME WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU!!!
The first time I ever knew I was alone was when my mom left the house and did not tell me where she was going or when she would come back. It was another awful night of panic on my end and furious exasperation on hers. I told her that I thought I was depressed. Her response was that I was too young to be depressed and then her sudden departure from home.
I crawled in bed with my father and I asked him to hold my hand and he wouldn’t. I can’t remember what I did after that. My brain has also wiped that moment clean. The emotion stayed. And grew. And drank up each aspect of my life. It flavored all feelings, it blanketed each experience, introduction, arena. That knowledge of being alone. Of being disliked for who I was. I didn’t understand why I was the way I was so how could I ever change it?
I feel things deeply. I feel the seasons changing, not just in temp or landscape, but I feel them emotionally. Winter is a death. Spring a renewal. Fall feels exciting. Summer is a dream you wake up from too soon. I feel the days of the weeks…the hum of Mondays through Wednesdays. The glee and intensity of Fridays. The quiet sadness of a Sunday.
As a kid, if I had a friend over, when they went back home on Sunday, I was forlorn. Even though I would be seeing them the next day at school, the moment had passed. The time was done.
The moments that stand out on the linear path of my life are the moments where I connected truly. where pieces slid together and movements were fluid. Moments that shaped my soul. The two dominating sentiments that color these moments are either LOVE or PAIN.
Love was the smell of summer. The way wind felt in my hair when I rode my bike. It was the first time I felt music. The way Stephen King wrote about Maine. It was the way writing never felt like anything I had to learn first. Love was coming out. Cutting off my hair. Going down on a woman. Holding her after. Being held. Love is making people laugh. Love is the joy that it gives me. Love is Lake Superior. Love is lyrics and a melody. The drums in “1979” The guitar in “Wish You Were Here”. Love was a cup of coffee and a Marlboro Red. Love was standing on a deck at dawn wrapped up in a boy who looked like Bowie. Love is going deeper. Going all the way. Going as far as I can. Going past what scares me. Letting go and flying. Love was LSD in a forest in Michigan. Love was marijuana at 17. Love was Samantha. Love was Amanda. Love was Gina. Love was Rikki. Love was Jean. Love is Karen.
I fall in love completely. I don’t understand the word “casual”. I will remember every date. Every first. Every nuance of our secret language. I will feel the beauty that is the arch of your eyebrow. I will commit to memory the shape of your hands. I will live off the taste of your mouth. I will feel for you to a depth that is the most wonderful misery.
When it ends I will feel that vacancy in everything. Then I will forget what your voice sounds like. I will forget what our sex was like. I will forget the way you kissed and absolutely will forget the sound of your laughter. My brain tasks itself with removing these pieces swiftly. A blocking out again of painful reminders of what’s been lost.