Monday, April 13, 2020

the stumble

set-off

It was innocent
She, I, veered at photos
Photos from long ago
Barely a woman staring back

Dead eyes
No smile

I remember the time as a blur
That dress
The scale
The tube

Haunting images
Skin and bones

Yet, as miserable as I was
I want her back
Not the person
Just the body

Unfair
To ask

Now I sit in tears
Refusing who I am;
A sister, poet, and friend
Someone in recovery

Toss me?
Keep her?

There is no place where we collide
It's me or her
You see?
I know

And, thus begins
The fight again


Friday, April 10, 2020

the scale: revision

You are below me
Like an ant to a tree branch
You are physically on the ground
My mind conjours this up: to get even I must now down
I intently focus on whatever number you spit out
It means nothing to you which I cannot fathom
Years of my life I worshipped
That definition of my worth
I cried, begged, and pleaded you to change your mind about me
Lost in a losing game
Now, here is a reality check
You define gravity
But certainly not me

box: revision

She confined me in a box.
Now I, her.
We are not even though.
She stole a piece of my soul.
Like a thief in the night.
I want it back.
Unfortunately, there is no way.
I instead have to regrow.
What I now lack I will not quite ever have back.
She has not won.
She's equipped with words but no gun.
I will grow and flourish.
A brand new me.
Whole, yet new.
Green to the world.
Afresh.
A box with a pretty now no more.

Sunday, April 5, 2020

exhaustion-2020

Mother Earth became weary
From pollution and noise
She sent forth a virus
To vacate her lands

The virus grew
Causing people to fear
Mother Earth rested
As the people dropped tears

From the grounds sprang spring
Signs of new life
While living stayed
Mostly cooped inside

As Mother Earth regenerated
People realized their gratitude's
Zoom became of high demand
In place of a hug

No one shall know
What happens in the future
But Mother Earth
Got her well deserved rest

And, people?
They got to understand
That they need people
Connection

And, the Earth

Friday, March 6, 2020

mirror, mirror

Before I really dig into this topic, first a few basics. What even is body image? "Body image is the perception that a person has of their physical self and the thoughts and feelings that result from that perception" (psychalive). Body image can be further broken down into four categories: 1. Perceptual, 2. Affective, 3. Cognitive, and 4. Behavioral. Body image is emotional- a perception tied to feelings. Not just what we see in the mirror, or what we think we see.
Negative body image has been my experience my whole life that I can remember. Even before the development of my eating disorder. In my experience body image was impacted by several factors. I grew up a dancer. As such, i was surrounded by mirrors and minimal clothing. I had teachers who would poke me and tell me to "hold it in". In other regards, I had older sisters who were seemingly always getting beach ready and a mother who greatly struggled with body image herself. Not to mention the objectification that came from years of sexual abuse. 
For me, body image takes place in two forms: one is the perception of how I see my body and one is the ideal I want my body to be. "Want" is the wrong word here, the way I think my body "should" be. The first image is inaccurate as it does not line up with what others say they see, my health, or what my body can do. The "ideal" image is more emaciated than I ever was even in the depths of anorexia. Both are linked to thoughts and feelings.
Our culture is slowly beginning to shift away from the "norm" and into reality. We look to people like Demi Levato and Kesha who are survivors. We hear about positive body image movements and embracing our bodies. We see resources that weren't there before.
How do we gain positive body image and what is it? Basically, positive body image is when a person has an accurate perception of his physical self and is confident in his body regardless of societal standards. Someone with positive body image is able to separate his physical self from who he is as a person. Seek out resources in the media. For the love of your higher power, stop clicking that diet article link that will ultimately make you feel like crap, do some yoga, be smart, think positive. Know you are not your body. And know, you are not a number.

Saturday, February 1, 2020

two boxes

Two sisters I know deeply. 
They have been placed in boxes. As if a box could contain them. 
They prefer the mind as a home.
One of the boxes is shiny and alluring like a picturesque sunset.
The other faded, often hidden as a secret fueled by shame.

Both sisters make promises they cannot possibly uphold. "Do as I say, I will make you happy."
Meet them with great warning:

Your soul they will keep.

Some view the girls as best friends. Others, foes. 
I say they're monsters of the mind.
Presented in two boxes. 
The sisters will fool you. Though, in different ways. 
Each convincing you her way is the answer to every question. 

The poison you choose to consume has little to do with how well you play the game.
The key is not what you are consuming.
But, how consumed you are by one or both of their wits. 

Once opened, almost impossible to close. 
I've met the girl, the monster, in each box. And, consequently been put in boxes myself.
The outter box may morph. 
The inner pain, deep rooted, remains the same.
So, I ask:
"Which one will you listen to?"
Shiny or dull?
It matters not.

I've entrusted my life to both sisters. 
Yet, I still stand today.
On the path where pride wrestles shame.
I walk.
A little bit more hesitant each day. Though questions come up. Confidence in them I do not lack.

They play two different games. With two sets of rules. 
The cost to play and win is life.
Stay away from the boxes. 
Without warning the sisters will bite. 
You'll be playing a game of life and death. 
Once the lid is off. 

Two boxes there are. Which come in many forms . 
Disguised as shiny and ideal, dull and weak.
Somewhere in between the spectrum you may fall. 
Do not cram yourself in a box.
Please hear this warning:

Beware my dear.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

beneath the mask

What's beneath the mask? You probably should not ask. I have a smile on for a reason. A long road behind.
It twists and it turns through a burning forest of wilting trees. They scream in agony. They wear no mask.
My mask, my smile, it is plastered for a reason. You could not take it if I took it off. So, you really should not ask. What's beneath the mask? You keep asking and prying like you DESERVE to know. Like you have a RIGHT to my story. I am here to tell you this: you do not. You do not deserve or have that right. 
Because what's beneath the mask? What's inside? A fragmented version of who I thought I would be. I lay in bed awake at night. My skin crawls remembering where his fingers traced. My eyes float shut long enough to be reminded of his face before they spring back to life. 
So, this mask, this smile, it is plastered for you. To protect you. Not me because the damage has already been done. Now, tell me, why is it you felt the need to know what's beneath the mask?

Saturday, January 25, 2020

beach of broken glass: stanzas

As I peer into the mirror, her words fill my mind "too fat".
 As I step on the scale, her eyes see the number "too high". 
And, as I drift off in the bathtub after an exhausting day at the gym "too lazy", she takes my hand by surprise.

I was merely floating? She convinces me I was drowning.
 I can see clearly the image she's planted- myself under the water gasping, straining for any source of rescue.
She pulls me ashore. Offers false air to restore my lungs. It stings as I inhale. Though it tastes refreshing- dancing on my tongue. 
I'm no longer looking into a mirror. The flavor of something invigorating. 

My life feels brand new.

We've met before in passing. The monster in my head and I. Now, she is me. 
Long curly dark hair, pale skin, green sunken eyes. 
I depend on her. Without me she cannot survive. 
Entangled. 
Like two roots growing down the same path. 
Enmeshed. 
Like two lovers who dare not part ways until the bittersweet end. 
What a beautiful tragedy. 
No more scale to mark my success. Now I've become something new.

She doesn't allow me to swim. At fear I might not return to the shore of "safety " she's created for us to exist on. There's  no freedom on her sand. Rules are always here. She gives promises she cannot uphold. Screams at me with every change of the wind. Even the wind tries to fall silent in return. The wind is futile in it's attempt, as I was at the gym.

She wants it all- my entire soul. 
A beach full of broken glass has become home.
In sand of shards I play. 
I pick up a handful to see blood glistening in the sun's rays. 
Risking my very life. It's what she wants. And I love her. Yet, I'd give anything to see her go. In truth, she'll never leave me. I must be the one to swim. 
Away from the beach of broken glass.
Floating in life once again. I awake in the bathtub. Clean flesh, tainted soul. 

Friday, January 24, 2020

metamorphosis part I

The age of which I was I am unsure
Eight or 9
I was small then
Innocent
Two brown pig tails down my back
She came to me like an angel in a dream
The next day the thoughts began to swarm
Her own illusive creation
I listened intently: fixated on her voice 
It was sweet, gentle, and everything I needed
Knowing what she wanted me to do 
Of course I knew, I could hear her plain as day
"Disappear"
Too young or too smart? 
I listened only

the voice of hope

Moaning, sobbing, screaming 
Silently in my mind
In my prison 
In my hell
My brain aches from the wrestling of the words within
They tear each other down
They put my soul through pure torture
I do not wish to proceed with this thing called life
Just when i think i can bare no more
I hear a whisper
It is faint
Yet it exists
The voice is calm and soothing
It is the voice of hope
The words shake my world 
"Dont look back keep on going better days are yet to come i promise"

her words are whispers revisions

She whispers antagonistic words.
They trickle out like water dripping off sea salted hair
kissed by the waves at dawn.
My feet become wet. 

Not everyone can hear her. To those who listen, she is captivating.
Every ear which can hear her does not listen equally. 
To some her words are nonsense. Others hear great truth.
Until they are waist deep in rough waters. I am the latter; utterly stunned.

She opens her mouth, letting her whip of a tongue lash out as she whispers, "you're not enough." 
I am enchanted.
Letting that whisper carve my soul 
like a shoreline of deteriorating sand.

The volume of her whisper is deafening. Not easily ignored; I hear nothing else.
As her whispers ebb and flow into my system.
Outward streams the tears I bleed.
They are added to the rushing water, now up to my neck; strangling me like a hungry snake.

The whispers are constant. All consuming. She does not even pause for air. 
The snake has swallowed: I am submerged now.

Her whispers are commands, "get off your lazy ass." 
My mind and body are her playground. There are laws that only she gets to enact. Her words are whispers.
To those who listen a warning: 

You will surely drown.

Sunday, January 12, 2020

beach of broken glass- revision

She takes my hand by surprise
I was merely floating?
She convinces me I was drowning
I can see clearly the image she's planted- myself under the water gasping, straining for any source of rescue
She pulls me ashore
Offers me false air to restore my lungs
It stings as I inhale
Though it tastes refreshing- dancing on my tongue 
My life feels brand new
We've met before in passing
The monster in my head and I
Now, she is me
Long curly dark hair, pale skin, green sunken eyes
I depend on her
Without me she cannot survive
Entangled 
Twisted together like two roots growing down the same path
Enmeshed 
Like two lovers who dare not part ways until the bittersweet end
What a beautiful tragedy
She doesn't allow me to swim
At fear I might not return 
To the shore of "safety" she's created for us to exist on
There's no freedom on her sand
Rules are always here
She gives promises she cannot uphold
Screams at me with every change of the wind
The wind tries to fall silent in return
I want to swim away from the beach now
I'm realizing her ways are like her sister's 
A figment of my imagination, no doubt
That relationship took up all that I was
Now teetering with nothing left to give
She wants it all- my entire soul
A beach full of broken glass has become home
In sand of shards I play
I pick up a hand full to see blood glistening in the sun's rays
Risking my very life
It's what she wants and I love her 
Yet, I'd see anything to see her go
In truth she'll never leave me
I must be the one to swim
Away from the beach of broken glass
Returning to participate, floating in life once again

Friday, January 10, 2020

stop

This body is a shell
A vessel
A mode of transportation 
Stop labeling it
Stop attaching value to it
Stop seeking my worth in it
Stop abusing it
Stop using it
You have your own

social anxiety

Are they looking
Do they even care
Am i enough 
Am i too much

what i can do

I am very special 
It is true
Here is an example
Of what i can do
I can pull air through my nose
Filling my lungs
I can empathize with others
Based on my own experiences 
I can peel back my eyelids gently 
Each morning and welcome the day
I can then reverse the process
Each night
Only to repeat again and again
I am very special 
It is true 
These are examples 
Of things i can do

Thursday, January 9, 2020

youth

"Open your eyes, foolish girl!" 
Her father hissed
"You're missing your damn life."
But, she, young and naive, was content behind her eyelids
Years passed
She began day dreaming
Eyes wide open
Of an escape to a better place 
Now, far from content in her life
To struck in the face by reality
Without the safety of her youth

faded

She woke up from a dream
To find she was still living
A nightmare 
Hell on earth
No simplicity 
Everything in her broken
Everything she tried broken
No way out
No way up
The fire in hell rose
And she, everything she was
Faded out