Let go

The feeling of wanting to escape is one that doesn’t leave. You move away, you travel, you run, you move again, you drink, you bury yourself in work, you run, you spend your day sleeping or surround yourself with people- even strangers- because it’s all reminiscent of getting away. You love another, pouring yourself into them expecting to maybe become them and ease out of yourself, even if it’s at their expense and your own, and behind you you’ll leave a marred landscape of hurt. It’s detonation and they (and you) will be left as a shadow of what you were. Escape, and all the while the calendar days elapse one-by-one, and yet you haven’t registered the passage of time. You think you can just leave, but it just hasn’t left you.

What are you supposed to do? Nine years and counting and you’ve realized that you’ve spent your entire twenties coping and just getting by. It’s silent and it’s invisible. Tight-lipped to even people you’ve known for years. They don’t know so does it really even exist? The point of escape. But to you you feel like you’re imprisoned, locked down in your mind and its memories. It’s been bad but lately it’s been worse. It’s nearly unbearable to be alone, having to face the emptiness left from having had your family ripped away from you at a young age. Something so new to you that it seems foreign, is the anger. You lash out at the ones you’re supposed to love and they bear it undeservingly. You’re angry that they don’t know how to support you and give you what you need (how can they though when you can’t even give yourself what you need?). You do it enough times to enough people and those people won’t be sticking around for long. You’re left shaking with rage, alone again with it and and the shattered remnants of broken love. This time the hate directed at only yourself, because there’s no one left to blame.

How is it to be solved? Laughable, really, to think that something so tragic and complex can have a solution. Maybe it doesn’t, but you don’t want to believe that. Your counsellor assures you it’s not your fault because you are a victim of such an unfortunate and sad circumstance and that you’re doing remarkably well for someone who has gone through what you’ve been through. Not many people would cope so well, she says. You briefly feel a glimpse of relief that gives way to a brick wall of disbelief. No. It’s not true. You don’t feel like you’re coping well at all. It’s more just getting by, you say. Maybe you’ve failed to accurately convey how you actually feel, and you wonder if there’s something else that’s wrong with you to make you this way. A ruse, you say. She looks at you with curiosity and truth. She says again how astounded she is at your marked resilience. Just take a moment to really feel that.

There’s a difference between giving up and letting go. You can spend your days trying to escape out of desperation. It’s certainly going to pass the time. You can continue to grasp at places and things and habits. Grasping at the people you love because you’re so afraid they’ll disappear if you don’t is only going to drown them. You can’t you can’t you can’t keep this up. You need to learn to tell yourself (even if you don’t believe it) that you’re not losing if you give people space and yourself space. During those times when there’s seemingly nothing left but yourself and your own rage and despair are the times when you need to practice this. To escape is to put something off; a temporary fix. It’s always going to be there wherever you go. To escape is to succumb to it, and essentially you are giving up. Letting go is to acknowledge that it’s there and that it’s part of you, but to let it be rather than to fight it. Why deny yourself a life of truth and self-tolerance that gives way to peace and hope? Learn to face it and yourself, because everything you need is already right here.

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love letter.

When I dream of you, you’re still alive, but you’re not here. I haven’t seen nor have I heard from you in so long, and I’m confused- dumbfounded, really- as to why. It’s so cold and callous of you to have left me like that. I’ve finally reached you after all these years, and you’re so cool and calm about it. Long lost sister living in a different city. I finally found you, and you don’t so much care.

There were times growing up, later on, when we were older, that I felt like you didn’t like me. I don’t blame you, I guess. I wish I would’ve been nicer and a better role-model instead of being insecure and feeling threatened a lot. But I didn’t know, and neither did you. We were really just kids. During those times- all pubescent- you were secretive and did your own thing. You had your own friends and did your own thing, and being more older and mature (finally), I tried to include you. I wanted so badly for us to be best friends. No, it wasn’t that way when we were little, but I clearly grew out of that before you did. I can’t blame myself though. You were a teenager.

When I can actually remember, I cherish the times we hung out. I remember when we went down to the park in phase six, wearing our big hoodies with our dark hair up. You brought Skye the dog- your dog- with you. It was windy as hell, just like it always was in that town. Around that time it was cool to take pictures on a disposable camera (as if we could afford a digital one anyway), so that’s what we did at that park. I remember we had fun that day. You weren’t withdrawn, and I wasn’t angry or sad. We just had fun. I think I still have that picture of you at the top of the playground, leaning against the fireman’s pole, with a wry smile and your dark doll’s hair framing your face. I snapped the photo from the ground, and so you’re above me.

I don’t know what went wrong. All this time and I still can’t comprehend you being gone. I’m so happy for the good times, but in my dreams the bad is expressed. I always feel abandoned or even disowned and wake up feeling sick. It’s a sick that pervades and permeates every corner of my life. If only you knew what it was like to live this kind of life- one eye open and your head on a swivel. Just in case, you know? I’m anxious a lot and sleep isn’t the same. The worst is the slowness (how things move so fast).

I wish I could tell you what happened. I’d tell you how fucking much I miss you and need you. It’s a hole that hasn’t been filled and can never be. I’ve wrecked relationships and can’t form new ones because everything is tainted now, like how a drop of ink just spreads into a glass of water. But that’s how it is, and I’m trying really hard.

I try to fool myself every second of every day by not thinking about you (or mom or dad- but this is about you this time). It’s sort of like damming back a river- eventually that shit’s going to leak through in some way. The agony that I keep frozen during the day (so that people can tolerate me) comes out at night when I’m too tired and in my dreams. So there you are, cold and uncaring. It doesn’t matter that you haven’t seen my in years as that was your intent. You’re indifferent to my presence while I’m burning inside. What can I do though, but sit and burn, as I’ve been doing. I can’t bring you back, and you can’t see me. I can feel you though, in me, and remember you through my love for you. Sister- with your black doll’s hair and your soft features, your coolness and that knowing sparkle in your eye, your warm energy and rare sensitivity, your you-ness that can’t ever be described fully but only felt by those who knew you- I feel you and I love you, and I carry you with me every single day.