Ten things I hate about you

I hate the way my voice fills with molasses when you compliment my legs. As if I don’t hear the thunderous applause of my cream colored thighs as I walk into a room. As if I haven’t been conditioned by men for millennia to hate every curve and soft spot of my life giving body. This body, that sheds blood to give life. I hate the way my cheeks redden when you compliment my breasts. As if these pendulous pouches haven’t been the talk of the town since I was 12. As if teachers, bosses, seamstresses, boys, and girls, haven’t shamed me into hiding under baggy clothes, minimizing sports bras, and the prayer for a reduction. Too long I’ve been taught to hate. Hate my hair, whose alternately curly wildness and limp tameness have caused me to be endlessly mocked and insulted. Hate my body hair, the ancestral remains of our evolution. I hate the way I’m praised for putting on makeup as if you haven’t told me time and again, “well, you should do what you can to attract a mate”. I hate the way I can see the beauty in my friends but not in myself. That I can’t let go of the insecurities I’ve wrapped around myself like armor. That for every half step forward, there are months of moving backwards. I thought I’d learned to be happier with who I am, but one compliment about my thick, creamy white thighs, and I’m back to being a quiet and shy pre-teen who quickly learned her body would never be her own, but a weapon to be yielded by suppression hungry men and the females they left plugged into the matrix.

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Who You gonna call?

Hundreds of numbers in my contacts. Only four that I feel comfortable reaching out to when I’m in need of a friend. Makes it real tough when none of them can answer and I’m going through some shit.

Its amusing I suppose. Many people have told me that they think I have a lot of friends. I put on a great face at work. I’m loud. Constantly talking. On many committees where I have to present in front of crowds. I do a lot for my school community, and I (mostly) do it with a friendly face and a smile. Truth of the matter is, I often feel very alone. I only have a small number of people I trust with my inner sadness and anxiety. It’s a vulnerable position, calling someone when you’re lost in the throws of an anxiety meltdown. You’re open.  Exposed. Raw. And although I know it’s not true, it makes me feel even more lost when I have to fight through it alone.

I think part of me thinks that the “others” will leave me. That once they see a glimpse of my bleak side that they’ll abandon our friendship. That they’ll realize how worthless and unlovable I am and leave. I understand that that’s a cognitive distortion. I know I am worthy and lovable. What I don’t know how to do, is get the cognitive distortion to shut up. I can quiet it often, and occasionally for longer periods of time, but the minute I am overtired or over stressed, out comes the doubt and anxiety. It lives inside the stretch marks across my lower abdomen. Inside my ‘Wagner waddle’. Inside my inability to remember how I forged such emotionally close/intimate relationships with my four close friends to begin with. Inside the constant bad messages on OKC and the constant lack of replies. Inside the, week of normal conversation turned to ‘so tell me how you want to be fucked.’  I’m so tired of hating myself but can’t seem to make, not doing so, stick around long enough.

One week later, I’m writing a letter nightly…

My parents haven’t called me since July.  I saw them in July.

My parents moved to Florida from Upstate NY in February of 2015.  I had a very very hard time with it.  I’ve also done extensive work in therapy about why I’ve had the feelings I’ve had about them moving and how to work through them.

I’ve done a lot of work with my therapist about whether or not I can say something to them.  Is this just them?  Is it just how they are?  Maybe.  They did the best they could.  They’ve raised two wonderful daughters.  They’ve given up a lot of my sister and I.  They worked hard, provided for us, supported us, loved us the best way they knew how.  How can I possibly take grief in them enjoying their retirement?  I can’t.  And I’ve done the work to process those feelings.

The problem now, is that I literally don’t hear from them.  They answer my text messages.  They answer my phone calls.  I have not had one uninitiated conversation with my parents since I last saw them in July.

Are there still things I need to work through?  Absolutely.  But they have things to work through too.  Don’t they want to call their kids?  Don’t they care at all?  My dad just texted “I brag about you everyday.”  That’s great.  Fucking call me.

I’m just so exhausted.

Can you hear me now?

I was talking with my therapist today about my relationship with my parents. I used to talk to them once a week at least. Partly, I’m sure, in a desperate attempt to make sure I was still loved…it’s a mildly complicated relationship that stems from a lot of things I don’t feel like putting online. When I made a recent(ish) breakthrough in therapy, the phone calls stopped. I stopped needing to call them so much. That’s all well and fine…accept today, looking through my phone records, which only stem back to August on my cell, I’ve spoken to my parents 6 times, and every single time, I called them. My parents have not reached out to me on their own since August 2nd.

I know not everyone hears from their parents often. I have a good friend who essentially NEVER talks to his parents. Maybe once or twice in a blue moon and everyone is ok with that. That works for them. But it doesn’t work for me.

What parent doesn’t want to know how their kid is doing? I’m not saying call me every day, but not one incoming phone call in 3 months?  That bothers me a little.

I hope that you BURN

My mom asked me a few months ago if I was having suicidal thoughts.  Makes you take a hard look at how your handling things.  For the record, I’m not.  Not really anyway.  Do I feel hopeless?  Yes.  Do I often stop and think, “What the fuck is the point?” 100%.  But I keep fighting, even if that just means I wake up and put on clothes and go to work.  I’m having a hard time handling the news again.  I may need to stay off all social media again.  45 now says he’s banning people who identify as transgendered from serving in the military.  And how was your (non-existent) service you overgrown weasel?  Tell me again how HC was going to ruin the lives of the LGBT community but you were going to fight for them?

I want to fight but there are so many things to fight for and against that I feel like I’m drowning.  It’s hard to breathe, hard to move, hard to stop crying, hard to get up and out of bed.  Where do I put my efforts?  How do you fight when all the people who hold the power can’t be swayed?  How do you fight when a man who was just diagnosed with (essentially) terminal brain cancer, races back to DC to repeal health insurance for millions?  How do you fight when there are pipelines, oil spills, senseless killing of black men and women, a women in control of education who doesn’t think people with disabilities have value or deserve education, a defunded National Parks Service (Where are you LK?!)…how do you fight?  How do you keep your head above water and say, “This is the way our nation has always been.  We fight, we change, we grow slowly and painfully.  We make mistakes and fix them eventually.”  How do you keep from slowly drowning in fear, depression, sadness, and hate?

Someone please tell me, because I don’t know how.