Sunday, November 23, 2008

Early poetry is painful

I've written here before about my issues with weight and my family while growing up. Here's a poem from half a lifetime ago, literally (age 19 from my current age of 38). As I read it now I see the pain that I felt then.
Love Me

I starve myself
because Mommy and Daddy
don't love fat, ugly, stupid girls.

I play the game with my life
but no one can win.

they've put me in the hospital
and filled me up with medications
to make me feel less anxious.

Nothing works.
Not their pills,
not my mind.

I only want
to please my Mommy and Daddy
even if it means
that I lose myself,
fade away,
and become nothing.

I don't care if I die
if only
someone would love me.

I used to be really good at self destruction. Self harm was what I was all about starting in about fifth grade. I had one of those families where everything had to look good, but I never looked good. I was fat and had glasses and I could never keep my hair looking nice. I was shy and hoped that if I was quiet then no one would notice all my imperfections. Fat chance.

I was scared of trying anything new because I felt so inferior all the time. I wouldn't try out for chorus and I was never a Girl Scout. I just read and played by myself because we lived mostly in the country. I would get lost in books because books didn't require that you look or act a certain way. Words that I read never hurt me in the same way that spoken words did.

I recall sitting in the back seat of the family car in sixth grade sobbing to myself as my parents drove around. I couldn't explain why I was so unhappy except that I knew I was a square peg in my family's group of round holes. I could cry without making noise and the tears would just flow into my jacket or shirt sleeve.

I know all this cr@p makes you stronger but I still haven't learned the lesson from it all. What was I supposed to learn?

Being fat doesn't make me happy, sticking my fingers down my throat doesn't make me happy, killing myself to be thin through starvation and pills doesn't make me happy. I've chosen all the wrong men to be in my life so that isn't the lesson. MS is a pain in the rear which just makes living harder. Depression has been my longest companion along with not being thin.

Maybe the lesson is that life is about riding the waves. Sometimes you're on top waiting for the wave to break and sometimes you've just run into the shore. Life is cyclical. Feel good, then bad, then pain, then a glimmer of hope, and sometimes sunshine and repeat?

1 comment:

Jen said...


There is a fantastic book called The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle. It talks about the present moment as all we've got, whereas the past is dead and the future is never here. We are continually living in a state of "now", where we are complete and whole and not in need. And the now is the definite portal to divinity or God, which we all have within us (although some don't know or can't quite feel it.) Not around us or unattainable because we are not worthy. Within us because we are always worthy and a part of the divine whole, whether we are overweight or too skinny, shy or annoyingly loud (!),mentally impaired or a Mensa member.

Take a look at his work (he's got several books)-- it might transform how you view yourself. And have a Thanksgiving that makes you feel blessed.