ellie lopez

Your English.

WOW. Your English is very good.

If I had a dollar for every time I heard that sentence. I would probably be out of debt by now.

I try my best to bite my tongue. Because no one wants to hear what I have to say, let alone care to hear where I come from. If they only knew how many times that happens. How people often talk to you in Spanish because they hear the thick accents of your parents. How people assume you don’t know a lick of English. How people assume that you were born in Mexico and ask you questions about where you are from.

My Mom would tell me how ladies would look at her and ask what part of Mexico my brother and I were from. When she would reply, “They were born here”, they more then often would repeat the question. They would ignore her. Because her accent gave her away. You’re not from here and neither are your kids.

Growing up people always asked how I spoke English so fluently. Because the minute they saw my name on paper, they went straight to my last name. Didn’t matter that my paperwork was in front of them.  All they saw was my last name before they saw me. I remember how my childhood friends parents would talk. Talk as if I wasn’t in front of them. I was always “that little Mexican girl”. How it was amazing how the little Mexican girl can enunciate her English words. Just as fluently as the Spanish words come out.

How do you speak without an accent?
Is your first language English or Spanish?
Why is your English so good?

I wish people would stop talking. Or when they try to be funny and talk in Spanish to me. As if my language is a party trick for their amusement.  After they had second guessed my English.

It doesn’t matter what I say. It’s not what they want to hear. They want to hear my accent. They want to hear me mess up my words and be there to correct me. They want to prove a point that no matter how many times I say I was born in the States, they want to tell me I am from Mexico. They want to hear me get angry in Spanish. They want the Mexican to come out of me.

One day, people are not going to like what I have to say.
One day the taste of blood in my mouth will not hold back my tongue.
One day  I am going to say “Funny, how English is my Second Language and I speak it better than you do.”

But I won’t dare. That’s what people want from me. Instead, I bite my tongue. Allow my mouth to overflow with the blood of my tongue. The blood that keeps me together. The blood that keeps me sane. I have learned that at this point, it’s not worth a fight. It’s just best to let this all go.

My English is good because I was born in the states.
My English is good because I was born in the states.
My english is good because I was born in the states..

Am I making myself clear yet?

 

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It happened to me.

He says he’ll leave me if I cut my hair.
So I wear it longer on the days I see him.
When all I do is hide behind a curtain of hair to hide every scar I am feeling.

He doesn’t like it when I wear that color. It reminds him of her. So he bans me from wearing it in order to please him. I don’t hesitate. I don’t say no. I just do as I am told. To avoid an argument. To avoid the words that he holds still and strongly behind his tongue.

I am afraid to speak at times. The outcome outweighs the lasting effects of anything I could ever say. I don’t know myself at times. I was a smart girl. I was a strong girl. Now I am letting someone else dictate my thoughts and actions.

I don’t know who I am anymore, I tell myself.
I am not me without you, I say out loud.

It’s not the fists I am afraid of. It’s this unseen power a person can hold over you with the mountain of words that follow. How easy it is to say how you feel and mean what you say. How easy it is to cut down a person without giving it a second thought.

I found myself saying that I’d wish he’d hit me. Something to show the world of the vile person he was. Create the villain among the sinners. All they see is my reactions to every one of his actions. All they see is my skin burning red and my tongue lashing out at everyone that defies me. All they see is my anger and his calm demeanor. Because he was always too cool and too good of a person to hurt people. He was always the cool guy in his nice kicks. He couldn’t hurt a fly they’d tell me. How I wish he’d hit me just to prove them wrong. Just to show them that I was right and they were wrong. Then all these feelings would be real not under the surface.

People always say “That would never happen to me”. I hate that. As they see a girl cover her face or hear a story of a girl who just couldn’t take it anymore. They don’t know what it’s like. They don’t know what it’s like to hide from your friends and family. To pretend your okay when your whole world is falling apart. How it feels to cut your arm in places because the words were too big of a burden to keep to yourself. So you punish yourself for being the sad expectation of who he wanted.

I was the dead weight he refused to carry, he’d often said. If I was skin and bones he would love me more. Hold me tighter. I believed him. I was stupid and I believed him.

I used to say “It would never happen to me“. That I would be one of the lucky ones to fight until my hands were red and my throat was raw. They don’t know that sometimes when a man loves too much they just ignore you. Tell you how worthless you are. How every time they see you it makes them sick. They don’t know how sometimes it’s more than physical. That words have a way of leaving bruises and scars on every inch of your skin. But they’ll never see it. They’ll never know.

They’ll never know that the reason you stopped dating is that you hear his voice in the back of your mind. That nobody will want you after he has had you. That nobody will ever love you as much as he had loved you.

Nobody.

It would never happen to me, they’d say.

But it happened to me.

Tracy, CA. 2015
#ThisishowIletgo

Amelie

I feel like Amelie.

Every time I look out my kitchen window.
Every time I finish baking and start washing every dish.
Every time I forget an ingredient for a recipe and have to stop everything and run to the store.

Hand it to me to think of characters that don’t exist. Thinking of characters as real life scenarios. I find myself daydreaming so often, I believe it is real life. Which leads me to Amelie. Her need to fix everyone. Her beautiful wardrobe, her tiny flat overlooking her neighbor’s window. How toward the end of the film she thinks of the man that had caught her attention. How she daydreams that he is right there with her and it draws so much emotion from her that a tear falls from her eye. 

It makes me think of the men that don’t know I exist. Even after all this time. How one in particular has been fixated on my mind often that if I ever met him in person, he would be a disappointment. Because I have built him up in my mind; from his mannerisms to his essence that he would be too good to be true in real life. Hand it to me to find a man that doesn’t exist. To fall for someone way beyond my league. I guess over the years I find it’s easier to fall in love with a person that doesn’t exist. That way men like him could never let me down. When every man has failed you. Has brought you up only to bring you down to the worthless way you feel. I fall in love with people that don’t exist. Characters in films, fictional people that could never exist in real life. Hiding from my own reality. The reality of feeling broken by the last man that thought he knew me well.

I believe these daydreams because reality has been too much to bear at times. Because the men on the dating sites have been too busy wanting someone else, because I am never what they are looking for. They take too long to reply, take too much of your time or string you along for their own benefit. They want me when they want me. I have spent too long falling for  people that will only bring me down. For them to leave me for someone better.

I wash another dish. Stare at the window, and wish to be somewhere else. To believe that the man I dreamed up, that follows me in my dreams does exist. Forgetting that I have only spoke 4 words to him. Or that we saw each other years later in passing. But sometimes when I forget an ingredient or think of something silly, I feel like Amelie.

It’s then that I stare at my reflection that haunts me through the window. My hair that never falls in the same place as hers does. How people will never care about how much I try to fix things. And no matter what I do, daydreams are never as good as when someone tells you they love you.

I can’t help but feel like Amelie. As I wash another dish and continue to stare out the window.  If only movies were real and dreams came true just the same. But they don’t. Back to reality, back to staring out that window. 

50 Bucks.

Money means nothing when you have it. When you’re struggling, even the tiniest mishaps cause you to break. I have never been one to never have money. Even when I don’t have it, it still doesn’t affect me. However, I am no stranger to human emotions and human errors. If I had it my way, I just wouldn’t complain about anything. I wouldn’t put my heart out there to get broken and all that other nonsense. Of course everything all started when I lost a 50 dollar bill, somewhere between my room and my car. The more I searched for it, the further away it went from me.

Its not that I lost money, not that I shouldn’t be losing money. Its that moment when everything in life feels like it’s hanging on by a thread. One more thing to add to the list of unlucky messes. This never ending cycle of bad luck that continues to follow me. 50 bucks is nothing, but at that moment it was everything. It was the straw that broke the camel’s back. Before I knew it, it opened up my heart and brain to all sorts of heartbreaking things. Because this would happen to me. Of course it would happen to me. Why wouldn’t this happen to me? Of course when I need something it’s not there. Then the water works form and I am back where I started from. It’s so easy for people to believe because I never say anything I don’t feel my emotions. I am only human, if only they knew how I really felt. I find myself getting upset when people tell me I don’t understand or I haven’t been in their situation. Then I find myself feeling rather selfish.

Really? Because you lived my life right?

The more things happen in my life I think about these cards I was dealt. I think about the number of times I have to fall to get right back up again. I wonder how much longer until the scabs on my knees heal, til it’s back where I started from. I am upset. I am upset that I feel like no matter what I do, I am stuck thinking that I have to deal with all this bullshit. Like clockwork people need me when it’s convenient for them. People spew out all their bullshit and I take it. But I’m the bad guy? I am always the bad guy.

When you’re hurting you think of every fucked up thing that has happened to you. The people that used you, the people that want something from you, the people that have such a miserable life that they make you feel just as they are. I am fucking tired of it. Everyone else plays this victim card very well and I am always the villain. I allowed these people to take advantage of the good in my life to be left with nothing. I know everything is one big test, but these same people continue to find me. Then come the mountain of apologizes. How can you say sorry to something that’s already been said? Something that’s already formed such a huge scar in my heart. But I am the bad guy? These same people just get this huge “get out of jail” card, and I am left with all the bullshit ashes of old life. Why do I have to clean up the pieces, and everyone else starts fresh and new?

I am just tired of being this second or third choice to people. I am tired of always having to be the punching bag. I am tired of the same thing happening over and over again. Sometimes I wonder what’s even worth it anymore. Everything I do just gets fucked up in the end. I am not saying that everyone else has it easier, its just sometimes I think people forget that everyone has feelings too. With everything that’s happened this past year it’s hard not to look at the bigger picture. Shit sucks right now but maybe in a year from now it will all change. I guess even if I have to cry my eyes out in a parking garage, it shows I still have feelings. I fell hard today but I am the one that gets back up again. That’s life. Life is one huge mix up of emotions but in the end it does get better.

All this because I lost 50 bucks. It’s funny how emotions work.

6/7/2013

I wrote this after a very bad terrible day of losing 50 bucks (which I later found underneath my drivers seat of my car). After I posted this, I was sent home from work for being a terrible mess. I spent the whole weekend then week, in a huge shade of sadness. I am happy to report that things did change after that. Anything can be a trigger to open up a mountain of sadness and emotion. I am no stranger to that but people always find it rather surprising. I can hide emotions just like the next person, but I am not immune to them. It’s all just a process of understand what makes us who we are. Things in life do get better, only if we want them too. I can’t help if I have a bad day, it just makes a good day even better.