Damaged For Life

As though waking up early and driving around all day is not exhausting enough, I listened to a conversation that really crushed me. I lay down to take a break and get some time to myself amongst all the craziness. In-between scrolling through my phone, I could hear the loud voices of my gran with my aunts speaking to my sixteen year old cousin. Her previous workplace had a bad reputation and they were giving advice with the best intentions, I suppose. They were telling her to be careful and cautious with men. They told her not to even let anyone kiss her, because then they will think that they can take whatever they want. She emphasised that there was no one that she wanted to kiss and that she knows all these dangers, even telling my gran that you can get herpes from kissing which was amusing, yet showed her maturity. I think that she has a better knowledge than I ever could have. For all the sex education they give you, they never mention psychological consequences. No one had these conversations with me. STIs are easily treated. I am glad that they spoke to her, but a part of me wishes that I did not have to hear. They told her that if she was not careful, that if something was to happen against her will, she would be damaged for life.

This is what has been ringing in my head ever since. Those words. Damaged for life. I keep thinking, is that what I am? Is that why I am like this? Does everything always come back to that moment? The most painful moment of my entire existence. The one that I wish I could forget, but that I instead relive when I close my eyes and fail to find sleep. Am I damaged goods? I thought time was supposed to heal. I hear it though. I hear all the judgements and thoughts that people have. They are beginning to become a reality. I think that this is for life. I think that this is a curse.

I fight it. I fight it everyday. Every time I stand up to face a world that has been so cruel. Every time I walk back into a home that never gave me a love I deserved. Every time that I am blamed. That I am told it is my fault. That I bring it on myself. That I am attention seeking. I fight. I get back up and I try again. Even though I often fail, I am a human and I have accepted my existence. I am trying to make it into a life. I am trying to forgive. I am trying to end the suffering. I do not want to be those words. Damaged for life. I cannot do it. That is not who I am. I am ruined. It is all because of one person. One moment. One mistake. One kiss. I think I have paid for every sin at this point. I think that I am more than I have allowed myself to be. I hold myself back in fear. I am terrified. I cannot just put myself out there. I cannot be open. I cannot break down many of my barriers.

I know that I will never be the same person. I will never be as trusting. My entire mindset has shifted as it had every right to do. Other people really have the ability to interfere with your life. It remains yours though. Every time that you take it back, you get to decide. You get to choose. Choose to be strong. Choose to accept. Choose to forgive. Choose to pick yourself up every single time you hit bottom. Choose not to be damaged. Say to yourself I am not damaged for life. I refuse for that to be my story. I refuse to let the demons win. I choose life.

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Pulling Away

There is only one thing that I know for sure. I push people away. I hate people getting too close. I hate it when you feel something for someone else. Loving scares me. I shake all night. I do not rest. I relive traumatic experiences. I scream. I cry. I shake. I sweat. I am restless. All night long. With no one to know. No one to see. I do not know what hurts more – loving or being unable to love. I still do not trust. I still ache.

I am not good at holding on. I let go. I let go of everything. Every few months, I decide that this is not me. I know that something is not right. I know that I have to get up and go. Just start again. Leave it all behind. I am only good for making messes. I wish I could care more. I wish there was more than just me. Love is gone from this body. It will come back. I will find it again, but not here. Not now. I am just not there yet.

I want to apologise to all the people that I have let go. To all those I did not fight for, because there was no fight left in me. I loved you, I really did. Maybe, I am selfish. The problem really is that I am a fighter, a survivor. I am trying to not let this world make me hate. The problem with that is I find hardly any room for love. Only love can drive out hate, though. That is why I am in such turmoil. Such despair.

I ache. I hate this pain. I want to put down this pain. It is worse than any pain I have had to endure. I am so close to giving up. I am strong, but I am so close to breaking. I do not trust people, because they are so quick to not trust you. To let you down. To not be there for you. Things change and then I will break. That is why I have to choose me and always choose me. I am not ready to break.

Damaged Children

Some children,

Search for love,

Everywhere.

They do not know

What it should be,

What it looks like.

It seems like love

When people

Pay them attention.

It is a desperation,

A deep craving.

Sometimes,

All they need,

Is a voice of reason,

Imparting wisdom.

A man that wants nothing,

Does not touch you,

Will not hurt you,

Calms your fears,

Allows you to confide.

That is all you are

And can ever be.

 

Parent

I often wonder what type of parent I would be. Damaged children, you see, are either severely disadvantaged or majorly advantaged. I hope to be the latter. However, I think that this requires reflection.

My mother does not know me. Not even a little bit. She could not tell you my passions or how I spend my time. She could not tell you what or who I love. This is not because I do not talk about it. Trust me, my passions they consume me and when I speak, I find I way to force what I want to into conversation. When I love something, it is not gentle. It radiates out of me and my eyes light up. She just does not listen or does not ask. She wants to hear only what suits her. If she cannot relate, she will not pay attention. Believe me, it hurts.

I want a child, I really do. I thought for a long time that I could not carry the burden of messing up another’s person life in the way my mother has. I did not think I had it in me to be a mother. I always considered myself too damaged to be responsible for someone else.

Actually, I think it is important that I am a parent. I want someone who is not just a soulmate to love. I want to see what good I can do. I want to tell my own how much they are loved every day. I want to give a child opportunities, maybe my own, maybe adopted. It does not bother me, so long as they are raised in a home of love. I want that child to grow up with choices and possibilities. I will not force them into anything that makes them sad and I will push them to pursue what they enjoy. I will guide them until they find what it is and let go when the time is right. I will not be resentful if it is not what I love and I will not say I told you so when it does not work out. I will leave them to explore and watch silently, ready with comforting arms on the difficult days, of which there will be many.

Most importantly, I will teach them what love is. I will never let that child go a day without it and they will not go into this world unable to recognise it. You will not mistake false kindness or trickery for love as I did. I know now that it was not my fault, but my parent’s. I cannot repeat that sin. You will always be important, you will always be heard and if anyone ever tells you otherwise, I will always be there. From the moment you enter my life, it will no longer be about me. It will be us and you will be in my world. I will never overlook you or regret you, no matter how you came about.

I am proud of my path. It has not been easy, but it made me. I do not think it always has to be that way. I will teach you everything I have learnt. I will not use excuses or disguises. When it is appropriate, I will be completely honest with you and I will ask you to be honest with me. I will explain to you that if I cry or yell, it is my flaw, not yours. That is what happens when you are so connected to a person; you hurt when they hurt. I may be disappointed, but I will never be judgemental. There is enough judgement in this world and the last person it should come from is a parent.

I will ensure that we live every moment. That we create memories together. I will follow you in your dreams and every picture, scrapbook or embarrassing thing I do, it may seem as though it is for me, but in many years you will realise that I wanted to show you love. I wanted you to never forget it and I wanted you to always be proud of yourself, because I will be forever proud of you.

One day, I will undo all the wrong that has done to me. I have repaired the hurt. All that is left now is the love I have to give.

 

Fearless

You ask what there is to be scared of, as if the answer could ever possibly be nothing. That is unlikely. I am scared of everything – I am scared of my own feelings and getting too attached. I am scared that no one will ever want me for me. I am scared of the daylight, when I lie exposed with all my scars visible and I am scared of the corruption that takes place at night.

Maybe it is not that obvious to you, maybe I hide it that well. I have been hurt before. I will probably be hurt again. I hide it all and you say why not be open, as though it is an easy thing. I struggle to even exist. It is all a façade. It is not a case of a small taboo, it is heavy. I carry the burden and sometimes it spills out. It can be so awful and obvious. I see it in people’s eyes, when they recognise a pain but even they themselves are too scared to ask what it is.

You say these things so lightly, but the truth is that it maybe is too much for you to handle. That maybe your fears are greater than mine. At least I know and face mine, but you cannot even ask the questions or bare to listen to the answers.