In the Dark

2AM, as I lie awake in bed wondering if you’re thinking of me. My thoughts turn inward, wondering why I push people away and why I often times feel so incapable of connecting. I’ve been here before. Many times. This… what would one call it? Feeling? State of being? This mindset? There’s always been this longing in me to step out of my shell, to let people see me, to let people know me but over the years I have only gotten better at shielding myself. I lie and tell people I’m okay. I tell no one about the way I’m drowning in my head. I make up all these wild scenarios in my head and I tell these stories over and over and over and over and over again until they have no choice but to manifest. And then I lament, I knew it would be true.

1AM the next day, and I am asking myself why I’m clicking refresh on Pinterest when I should be asleep getting ready for a new day. I thought about ending it. Me, myself, my life I mean. I thought about ending it last week and now I’m sitting here looking at affirmations, trying to keep going just one more day. My therapist tells me my life matters and I almost break down. She’s the first woman of color to say that to me. And I am sitting here in this bed trying to will myself to pause on the refresh and believe I have something worthwhile to say and to stop myself from procrastinating. I give it another 5 minutes.

I am bobbing through my dreams and I wake up crying because you kissed another woman. I know, I simply make no sense. I let go but I’m still here wondering. I want to let you in, but getting close triggers something in me. I think it’s called PTSD. Years of childhood emotional abuse. My brother thinks I just need to get over it, but he can’t see how deep the trauma is embedded in my bones. It’s in me. That’s why I can’t remember past today. All I remember is I’ve always been depressed. All I remember is I’ve always hated my presence. But this beast protects me from anyone trying to get past the gate because I still have wounds healing from being handled carelessly by loved ones…

11AM and I break down in the kitchen. It’s nothing. It’s everything. There’s no one in the kitchen but the room feels so packed. I can’t breathe. I know if I leave I’ll be too ashamed to cry in public. So I put on some jeans and find my way traveling through the city. Where the earth meets the ocean. I remind myself I am beautiful. I remind myself I am safe. I remind myself I am worthy of life, of love, of good things. I remind myself I just need to take it easy. I am healing. The pieces are making sense to me. I am returning to the real me. And I am hoping that this journey will allow me to open up, to let people in and, finally, let someone know me.

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