emotional abuse

I tried to drink it away.

I tried to drink it away.

I can’t stop thinking about that line.

It’s a haunting reminder of a past and the person that goes with it. Who I am, who I was, and everything in between. But the way the words linger, I can’t stop hearing over and over.

If I could drink it away, I would. Every last drop. Every thing to keep this memory from forming a nostalgic image in my romanticized past. Everything through rose colored glasses. Everything blurry, messy, vile and perfect.

All I have are memories. The late nights in crowded rooms. The cigarettes I’ve smoked. The countless men I have kissed, just to wish it away. The countless times I tried to drink it away. Nothing worked. Even sitting here going over lines in my head, I can’t keep it away.

I rub my hands together in nervous energy. Running the fingers down the palms of my hands. Thinking of a million things. People I have longed to forget. Everything just keeps coming back. If I say everything out loud it just puts words into the atmosphere. It makes the names disappear but the faces remain. When all I want is to do it take this pain away.

I drink to forget. I drink to let go. I hold the bottle close and wish this away. Years will pass eventually and the nostalgia of you will disappear. Until then, I continue to drink these feelings away. Putting out words in the atmosphere until you disappear completely.

I am going to let you go.
One drink at a time.

 

San Francisco, CA
January 21, 2009
#thisishowIletgo

 

 

 

 

 

 

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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

I can see your aura.

A psychic came up to me in the mall today. Which sounds weird just saying it right off the bat, but this isn’t the first time. I always wonder when stuff like that happens, if they could read everything in your mind. What you’re feeling, who you’re thinking of, and everything else in between. It caught me off guard. When I was busy thinking of people I thought were long forgotten in my mind. I know it’s a hustle, I know it’s some mind game, then I start thinking, “what if?“.

What if she knows something I don’t know? What if everything isn’t just some bogus hustle and she really sees me.

“Your energy is very strong…I see good things coming your way but something is holding you back”, She tells me. Hands me a card and then walks away.

I’ve written about psychics before but something about today made me think back to the first time. I remember it so vividly to the clothes I was wearing and the deep cigarette smoke of a crowded Vegas casino. I was in Planet Hollywood and a lady looked at me and said “You look like you need someone to talk to..” I wanted to cry right then and there because she was right. I sat and listened to her talk about my life at it’s current state. The people who have hurt me. What I was doing to myself. How I needed to stop being in love with people who would never love me back. How my Aura was bright but I lived in a state of complete darkness.

I don’t talk about my problems. I talk about my dreams, my ambitions but to talk about what’s hurting me, I don’t talk to anyone.

At that point in my life I was keeping a variety of secrets and dealing with my own personal demons and self destruction. I’ve had people tell me “If you need someone to talk to, I am here”. Which I am grateful for, but I am stuck in a memory of my problems aren’t half as bad as everyone else’s. This isn’t a pity party. It’s easier to hear everyone else and fade softly into the background. But here I am, seven years later and someone tells me: “Your energy is strong, good things are coming your way but something is holding you back”.

I know what’s holding me back. I am holding me back. I am holding back everything I can to not let people in. I am holding back my life in order to let others feel happy. I know this all too well.

He used to say he could see my aura.

“I am looking at your aura”, he’d say
“No you can’t. If so what color is it?”, I’d reply.

He would fidget and laugh, then never answer. Always changing the song and tapping his fingers to the beat. Songs that I never understand until long after he had gone.

“I can see your aura”, he’d say. Over and Over, again.

Many times I wondered what that meant. Just another ploy to make me believe he cared. That he was the only person that could see me. The only person that saw straight through me. He always gave off this impression that he knew me best. That he knew better than what I was putting out into the world. Telling me that I wasn’t living up to my full potential. Words that have remain triggers to my self-esteem, after I swore that I was letting go of everything that belonged to him.

Seven years later, my heart stops when someone says “Your energy is very strong..”. Because I don’t doubt that my energy is strong. I don’t doubt that I need someone to talk to. I just can’t help wonder how these people find me. Is it through the cosmic energy I put out into the world? Is it my big dopey sad eyes that go looking for them? I know it’s all bullshit. I know it’s all some hustle for money. Still I nod, smile, and take their card. Tracing the number on the card, over and over, until my friend returns. They always find me, just when I am ready to let go.

Sometimes I wish I could tell you about this, where in some universe we were still friends. Still able to talk about things as if nothing had happened. But then I remember that you’d always turn this around like this was my fault. That I asked for this to happen. Always my fault and it would end in an argument where I was the one apologizing. This is where I should be angry, this is where it still hurts. I can’t help but think that you never saw my aura, even though you said you did. You lied to me when I thought you were being true. I am tired of letting this sadness hold me back.

It’s at that moment, I completely forget you. Completely let you go. I fold the card in half and stuff it in my pocket.

I can see your aura“, you would say, but could you see me?

This is how I let you go. This is how I let go.

 

 

 

Daly City, CA.
June. 2016

 

 

 

 

Self portrait with Chopped hair.

IMG_4079

We grow our hair like weeds for people that will never love us. To later chop off all the dead weight, once they leave us. This time, I wanted to do the leaving. I wanted to cut the man at the source, and resort to every dramatic episode I could think of. Because it was never his choice. It was my choice, my decision, and it was my turn to leave this time.

If you cut your hair, I will leave you.

How I watched every strand of hair grow to the middle of my back. How happy he seemed as he ran his fingers through it, paid no mind to the person before him. It’s when I think I have him, that he leaves without notice. His ghost that trails behind then lingers once he leaves. It’s when I think I have won, that I have lost everything before me.

When you believe you love someone, you’ll fall for anything. Even something simple as leaving every strand of hair on your head, just as they like it. I loved him, from the deep parts of my soul, to every long strand of hair that fell across my back. I watched as my hair became my shield, my armor from the world. My way of hiding these feelings of doubts and worries. My hair continued to grow into a tangled, tousled, mess. I continued to listen to his threats, as empty as the love he gave me. No matter how long my hair grew, he never came back.

Frida Kahlo - Self Portrait with Cropped Hair - 1943

I wanted him back for all the superficial reasons I hated. I wanted to stop this numbing suffocated feeling of being alone that drugs nor alcohol could fill. My hair continued to grow and I continued to wait. He said I was perfect and to never change. If I cut my hair, he would only leave me. He would never come back. And I continued to wait. Until the weight of my hair became the weight of my worries. Until my hair became heavy, that I could no longer hold my head up to the sky. We do these foolish things for love but at what cost does it love us back? At what cost do people understand that we are people underneath all that hair? That our hair doesn’t make you love us any less. There were days I wanted to rip every strand from my head. Tear apart the existence of what I believed he wanted. Because for a brief moment I was perfect to you, don’t I ever think of changing.

I watch as the strands of hair fall to the ground. Inch by inch. The memories of you and the ghosts before you. If you cut your hair, I will leave you.  I try to keep myself composed. Hold the tears back. Love was never what held us together. The strands of dead hair that laid before my feet; bear witness to this change that comes over me. I am more exposed to the world without my shield. I am showing the world who I really am, beneath the hair.

 

When the final strand of hair falls, I will forget you. Someone will come in and sweep away the memories scattered on the floor. It won’t be me this time. For the first time, I have stopped listening to ghosts.

 

Some place good.

People have a funny way of disappearing. Coming in and out of your life as seasons change. I met you in the summer, and you lasted through fall and winter. By spring we couldn’t run away fast enough. We were so limited in our time together, and some days I feel like you couldn’t leave fast enough. You disappeared and expecting this all to go away. That leaving was easier than the need to stay. The winds of spring blew you away and the only thing I have left to show for it, are these scars of the coldest winter.

You weren’t suppose to leave, I was. I was suppose to tell you everything I felt and walk away from everything. You were suppose to have your heart frozen to stone and unable to sleep for weeks on end. You were suppose to replay my words until they become a recurring dream to you. To feel these words long after I have left. Haunting you like fog and disappearing through the clouds. You were suppose to be left with the corpse of who I used to be. But you left. You left and didn’t hesitate to look back. Here I am haunted by every word, as your face comes across every person I meet. You didn’t love me. As much as you implied it, you never once said those words. You seemed warm like fall but you were cold like winter. Never said a single word, unless it was to hurt me. I realize that now. After all these years I realized that what we had wasn’t love. And as much as I thought I loved you, in the end I knew deep down I didn’t. And it tore me apart. Because I wanted desperately to be with someone, to have that comfort in someone, but I knew it wasn’t you. I just wish it took me sooner to realize than later.

You were like all the seasons. Changing leaves to adapt to the ever changing weather. You only like someone for the moment when it’s convenient for you. Until you fly away and find someone new. I was a fool that believed in summer love that would last through fall, winter, and spring. I was stupid to believe that you would stay, when all you do is change color to who ever you want to adapt too. But this time I leave you in the summer. In the blistering sun and the swelling heat. Leave you begging for the fall and holding on for the winter. I can change just like you do. Only I change for myself and not anyone else. Thats something you haven’t grown accustom to yet.

You can watch the leaves fall. Changing colors from green to gold to brown to rust. Watch the winter rains swallow up the valleys and leave you gasping for more. I am not coming back, just so you know. I am not coming back. My summer skin has healed, now all I am left with is gold.

7/2/2011

What’s wrong baby?

Why are you single?
Why haven’t you dated anyone?
Why aren’t you dating?

So on and so forth.

If I had a nickel for every time I have been asked the above questions. People make it sound so easy. Falling down, dusting yourself off and then trying again. I know everyone means well. At the risk of sounding crazy, I just let people assume what they want to believe. Its easier for people to believe what they want about me, then having to tell them how I really feel. Because how I feel people seldom understand. I feel scared, I feel crazy, and most times I feel completely broken.

Broken in the sense that my past has broken me into a different person. Instead of shaping me into a better version of myself. I find it harder to trust people, because the past has a funny way of coming back to haunt me. When people have hurt you, it takes a while to come back from. I watch how easy it is for my peers to jump from relationship to relationship. Meanwhile, I watch myself still haunted by the past, with it’s broken words and promises. Hurt does that to you. It breaks and bleeds everything you touch. It claws at your insides, until the raw emotion eats at your soul. I was never like this before. I loved this illusion that love gave you. I loved the sappy love songs, the cliche films that remind you what love should look and feel like. I loved this idea of love and the beautiful orchestrated soundtrack it came with. Now I feel like a completely different person. This illusion of love has broken up my insides and rebuilt itself a different person.

How do you tell a stranger you feel broken? How do you describe it in a way that doesn’t scare off the other person? That pieces of you are slowly going back together again, but the pieces have left you shattered and cynical about love. When people ask you the same questions, how do answer truthfully without sounding tragic?

I don’t know where to start. I don’t know how to tell a complete stranger that someone broke me down completely. With words that are still tattooed on the inside of my heart and creep out onto my skin. The past is the past, but how can you be honest with someone, when you can’t be honest with yourself. Some days it hurts like hell and I want to claw every piece of flesh on my body. I want to scream out every obscenity until it doesn’t hurt anymore. Because thats what hurt feels like. Even after six years, the words don’t feel so vividly anymore, but they still haunt me. They’re faint insignificant words that still linger after the smoke has cleared. I know that not every one is like that. I know people won’t hurt me as bad as my past was. Still, it hurts and I can’t pretend that it doesn’t.

I feel as if these fingers continue to point at me, and I haven’t a clue what to say when people ask me why I don’t put myself out there. You might as well just state “What’s wrong with you?“. I don’t know how to answer those questions without being honest. Then at the same time, I have this need to keep guarded about my feelings. Trusting people is hard. Especially when your heart has been through a lot. I don’t know how to start a conversation with a stranger and not feel completely broken. People want the truth. People want you to be open and honest.  I know that. Deep down, I know that. I want to be open. I want to say everything I have in my heart. I want a level of trust to return, where I can feel open to be honest. It’s hard for me to be open. It’s hard for me to say how I feel, and instead I change the subject completely.

I am not asking for anyone to pick up my pieces. I just want people to understand that its not easy. It just takes some time to feel like myself again. If it takes me a day, a month, or a year, I know I will feel like myself again. Some days are easier than others. I am not sure if this answers anyones questions or judgments about me, but here it is. These are my cards on the table. Take it or leave it.

12/7/2015

Life Support.

I’ve been sleeping with the lights on.

When you love somebody enough, they could never leave you. If you push, I’ll just pull you back in. Anything to bring you back to me. Illuminate this darkness I feel washing over me. Take away all this shame and desperation. I need this comfort in knowing after all this time, we could be fine. Through the storms that turn to hurricanes. I wish I could tell you that breathing gets easier after the fog fades. I wish I had all the words to say to make you come back, but all that is mystified illusions that never existed.

I spent a lifetime relying on people. The wrong people, the right people, what does it matter. They became a crutch that helped guide me through the unknown. I am fixated on the idea that these people are the only people that understand me. They’re perfect and untouchable, everything I wish I could be. Nothing can hurt us. Placed high on these pedestals, untouchable perfection. There are cracks in your armor. Cracks in the foundations from which you stand upon. Still I would break myself before you broke. I would patch up every crack in your armor. Anything to make you better, anything to make you love me.

There’s a method to my madness
It’s clear that you don’t have a clue

The cuts they heal. The bruises they fade. The words are nothing but a lingering memory I could never escape. False hope and sweet desperations. Exasperated expectations that would never come true. I am holding on to the last bit of string that connects us. The string keeps this illusion connected between us.  I can’t hold on any longer. I can’t keep pretending that it doesn’t hurt when it does. Pretending that my scabs can easily heal into scars. You were the deepest cut, the biggest bruise, and still I wanted everything then nothing from you.

This is my world, this is my choice
And you’re the drug that gets me through

All I have left is this string that connects us. I am ready to let go now.

03/12/2008

This is where I leave you.

I leave you by the cracks in the pavement where we said our last goodbyes. When promises were nothing but spoken illusions under starlit skies. I have nothing against you, I just want nothing from you. Because everything you did merits no reply. Everything you said, were nothing but lies.

I watch nostalgia pick you apart. Take you down from your pedestal, piece by piece, and inch by inch. I have nothing left, aside from the memories I have packed for you to take at your will. I don’t need this anymore. I don’t need you anymore. Everything you did was never my fault, but how carelessly I believed otherwise. This is the last time, and this time I mean it.

How carelessly you held my heart, and dangled it in front of me from a string. I wasn’t good enough for my own heart and never good enough for you. I watched you go through your rolodexes of people and never paid no mind to me. And you wonder where this leaves us after all this time? You wonder if after all these years, would I still bother for your time?

I am done and this is my parting note.

This is where I leave you. I leave you with this goodbye.

11/5/2010

The ghost of you and me.

Disappearing is easy. You fall through the cracks and blend in with your over powering surroundings. If there was a how to guide of “How to disappear completely”, you’d have written all the books. It’s always harder to forget but you’ve made it easy to remember. You become a ghost of your former life, just a fragment of a story people tell at parties. The person you were and the person you used to be. All of which have nothing to do with you. Nothing to do with me. Nothing to do with who we’re trying to be.

I can change.
I can be what you want me to be.

You didn’t have the time to wait and I didn’t have the strength to see myself. Through the darkness, the trenches, and the misery. That was then. People can change. I can change and I tell myself  constantly. I can be better then what you want me to be. I can be perfect. I can be happy. I can watch this madness take over my veins and infect my bloodstream, pretend it doesn’t exist. Pretend that ghosts stop haunting even after the sun comes up. I was never good at hiding and you were never good at pretending.  Even I can’t pretend as good as you do.

Then you fail miserably.

Before you know it you’re right back to the drawing board. Reinventing yourself. Hiding all of your past failures and pretending a part of you didn’t exist. It breaks you up inside, but you never tell anyone. You bleed, you fall, and you never tell a single soul. You hide every flaw so perfectly, just as well as you guard every inch of your heart. You disappeared into the fog and like the mist you reappear. Reappearing only a fraction of the person you used to be. So hollow and vacant and still, I can’t help but want all of you.

I was wrong for everything. Wrong for wanting the imperfections and expecting perfection. Wrong for believing in changes that actions could never deliver. Wrong for believing in the ghost of you and me and all the memories that followed. Still I wanted it all. Everything and in-between. Maybe I expected too much. Maybe I wanted more than I deserved. Still I wanted ghosts to reappear in the forms of you and me. But I can’t have you. I can’t be who you want me to be. The more time passes the more you become what you always were. A mystery to the people that you surround yourself with. Like the ghost you were, you disappear completely.

I can’t do this anymore.
I don’t need you anymore.
I don’t want anything to do with you.

Disappear and take all my memories with you.

12/17/2012

 

 

Swing away.

You never mean to hurt the ones you love. You say the words that cut down their roots, but you never meant to break their trust. You love and protect, you forgive and forget. Apologizes are just words that bleed rust but have no meaning anyway.

Everything hurts.

I didn’t mean to show you all my fears. I didn’t mean to cry when people said goodbye. I didn’t mean to pry in the things that had no meaning to me anyway. Here I lie with the words that seem unclean, that hurt the longer I pour salt on all these wounds. It only hurts if you cry. Only hurts if you focus on the pain. This blood is thicker than water, but the water has been washed clean.

4/12/2009