What is love?

What is love?

Growing up I always had insecurities surrounding love. From the moment I was created I was told how no on truly wanted me. My mother battling her own demons at the time and my father addicted to drugs were incapable of being able to fully devote all love to me. When I was created my mother had found out that she had cancer. From what I’ve been told Melanoma is the only form of cancer that goes from mother to child and my mother prior to conceiving me spent 30 mins in a tanning bed for her first time and developed a 4-5 on her bottom. I don’t have memories of that time clearly with being an infant so I go off of the things I’ve been told through the years. My papa used to tell me he believes deep down my mother wanted to love me but guarded herself due to the fact that I wasn’t supposed to survive the cancer. My mother tells me she was the only one who loved me. The story I’ve been told and brow beat for years with is my mother father and great grandmother were the only ones who came to see me when I was born. My family, mostly Caucasian, didn’t want to accept a multiracial baby into the family. They had tried to convince her to have an abortion. That’s where my mother says her love for me came in. After a few days my family came around and I believe they grew to love me. But imagine the difficulty believing that you could ever be truly loved and accepted by someone hearing this story over and over again at a young age.

I remember falling into a dark and lonely place very often while growing up. I could be in the middle of doing something with my grandparents and randomly ask them, “do you love me?” They would always reply with a yes and list all the reasons of why.

That insecurity has followed me and has carried over into my relationships. I feel unworthy, not good enough, and unloved a majority of the time. No amount of therapy has been able to change that for me. I am very big on actions. Your voice can express to me a million times the love you share for me but what you do is what matters.

I had a partner who would tell me in this tone that he used only when expressing love that they loved me, but in the same breathe do things that weren’t love in my eyes. They would allow family members to degrade me, hit me, disrespect me and try to convince me that it was love. It takes my brain time to wrap itself around the idea that love isn’t a cookie cutter definition. It looks different to everyone. In his eyes maybe abuse was love. I could understand that. In another previous relationship I had paired love with abuse. He would hurt me and return with apologizes and flowers with cards that said I love you. Every hit combined with “I love you, why do you make me do this to you.” I had been convinced for 4 years that love was violence and fights. At the time it made sense to me. My father abused my mother, my mother abused me, my family degraded one another and they all claimed love.

The other night I was talking to a friend who referred to love in almost the same way. I think we learn love and it’s meaning very young. We see the people around us show love in their own ways and we are programmed that it’s how you demonstrate love. I know what love should resemble based on Disney and Romance movies, but that isn’t real life. So how do you truly know how to love if you’ve only seen it in forms of violence and half ass apologizes? How do you rewire years of trauma like that?

I look more and more to my grandparents. The way they interacted with one another is the type of love I yearn for. My Papa never forgot an anniversary or passed up an opportunity to make my Nana feel special. They had their arguments and tough times but when they looked at one another you could feel the electricity they shared. I try to rewire my brain to accept only love in a form as pure as that. The type of love you don’t have to water down. Love isn’t just in partners but love is in friendships as well. My friend tells me love is being your unapologetic self. It’s being able to be open and talk about the hard issues with one another. I look at her and wish to be as confident and secure.

I’m learning there’s no time constraint to heal that past trauma surrounding love. However; you shouldn’t demonstrate the false love you’ve been programmed to show on others and refer to it as such.

Sincerely,

Me

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Changes

Changes

Index finger flexing on and off my fully lit screen. “What do I even reply to this?” I say to myself through the tears. I click in and out. Starting, erasing, and retyping my message. “Is there even a point?” My biggest insecurities being shoved down my throat by my own destructive thoughts. Im always the one who cares more, tries more, gives up last.

I respect your decision

One of the biggest lies. I didn’t respect it. I didn’t understand it. But I had to be okay with it.

In that moment I decided I would never give anyone the power to break me again. I’ve said this a million times…..but I meant it this time.I put to much into the people I care about most. In a matter of 5 months I had experienced some of the biggest heartbreaks while trying to heal from my past. “Now? Now is the time you want to walk out”, I think to myself, “This is when you decide to hurt me?” Timing is everything and at the time I thought this was the worst thing that could happen. Who Chooses to give up on someone they care about during times like these?

I could never do this to you

The same 7 words I thought to myself for each individual betrayal. “This is a permanent decision to a very temporary situation.” I spoke out loud as if I could be heard through the just sent message. This is something that I won’t be able to forgive. How could I? I know myself and as bad as I didn’t want it to be true……I knew in that moment my view of you had changed. I could never look at you the same way I once did.

After weeks of self pity and displaced anger I began to pick myself back up. There is nothing like a heartbreak to make you start your soul journey.

In 2015 after my life actually began to take flight I embarked on a spiritual journey. Derailment happened as it will and In November of 2016 I went through an Evolution course taught by Truth Irvine. It was one of the greatest things I could have done. I learned how to love myself, put me first, set boundaries, and let go of so much trauma. I felt renewed. I remember waking up on morning and thinking I had finally reached enlightenment. I forced myself to be happy every morning and I just knew that I had really understood the meaning of that insightful weekend. Do I have to say it or do you already know what’s coming next?

Yea you’re right….I was wrong. I didn’t know crap about enlightenment. Two failed pregnancies later and I was right back in the darkness that I was trying so hard to escape. I let it consume me. Drinking, partying, and all the escapades to numb the hurt that I didn’t want to address. If I push it down and don’t think about it then it’s not real. It never happened right? My idea of dealing with my shit was pretending it didn’t exist.

Years of doing this brought me to two tours in outpatient therapy due to a failed suicide attempt and on the verge of another. 5 days out of the week I was either in group, individual, or processing therapy and classes. It wasn’t until the second go around that I really understood the key ingredient I had been missing all these years. It’s okay to be sad, it’s okay to be angry, it’s okay to be anxious.

It is what it is

Those key words. I can’t judge the emotions. What good is that going to do? I can’t change the people around me. I can either express myself and my feelings to the person at hand and if that doesn’t work then accept it or let them go. In the previous heartbreaks I spoke of in the beginning I chose to accept one and let the other two go. Learning that you can’t heal in the same environment that made you sick is something I find myself saying daily. I’ve taught people in the past how they can treat me by what I’ve allowed them to do or them see others do. I’ve allowed people to hurt me, walk away, and then waltz right back in again. That wasn’t healthy or healing for me.

This time around I feel so well rounded. Knowing that it’s okay to not be okay is so healing in itself. Just realizing the judging of my thoughts and emotions and letting them just be that. Emotions without judgement is so peaceful in a way. I’m not saying I don’t cry or get angry because I do, but I don’t root myself in it. I’m not living there any longer. An hour or two and then I wash my hands of it till the tomorrow when I allocate time for it again.

During the past 2 months I’ve said goodbye to people I never thought I’d let go of, left my job of 8+ years, strengthened some friendships with some old friends, made some new friends, saying no more….especially to people who don’t contribute to my growth, and started school for a career in a field I wanted to join right after high school. So many changes that I never would have done before. I’m a firm believer that rock bottom can be the solid foundation you can build up from.

I am communicating how I feel in a more productive way as well. Depression, anger and frustration can be brought on by lack of communication or understanding. I’m learning to admit when I’m wrong and stand my ground when I’m not. I express my feelings and don’t allow them to be diminished.

I think there is some type of ease in knowing that things will never be perfect, but they will be okay. You will be happy as long as you allow yourself to be the main source of happiness. At the end of the day you have yourself and that has to be enough.

Sincerely me

Finding My Way Back From OZ

Finding My Way Back From OZ

A mixture of lavender and over cooked corn tortilla shells was the scent I remember from that day. I can’t remember my thoughts before, the color of my shirt, the location of where I even found the pills, but I can remember the smell that filled the air. It’s ironic isn’t it. Lavender. The calming, stress reducing, essential oil. That’s what I smelt, yet there was no ounce of calm in my body the moment my mouth touched that orange pill bottle.

Reading my text messages from earlier that day nothing seemed out of the ordinary. Complaining to my boyfriend about what a stressful day I was having at work wasn’t off kilter seeing how everyday this year had been intensely overwhelming. I ate lunch with my usual lunch group, talked our usual talks, did my normal work routine. Yet my world went black at some point.

There are a number of things I told the doctors, but nothing after the fact that I can say was the true blue reason of why. I remember taking my father to the behavioral health center after a drug induced psychosis. One of the questions was, “why are you here?” My dad explained he felt like he was trapped in OZ like Dorothy and he needed help finding his way back. There are things that happen in your life that might not hit you right there in that moment. It might be days, weeks, even years later before you finally feel what you should have felt then. But sooner or later the pain you’ve pushed down catches up to you. I finally understood what my father meant by that. I’d clicked my heels a million times, but still couldn’t escape the confines of my own personal OZ.

“What triggered your breakdown?” I was asked. It could have been a number of things, but I do recall before leaving work a coworker stopped and told me that we would be losing our health insurance. Because our job has decided that we are not and I quote “their problem”. How lovely and compassionate. Before kaiser I had medi-cal. My kaiser OB reviewed my charts from my first pregnancy and came to the conclusion that it was indeed a viable pregnancy. Yet my medi-cal doctors didn’t have the time or education to figure out what was going on with my body causing me the pain. They just decided that the pregnancy needed to be terminated. So hearing that I might have to go back to these doctors broke me. I still hadn’t really dealt with the trauma of losing my angels. I just stuffed it deep down hoping it would disappear just ask quickly as they did. Driving home my mind started spinning, calling people to get comfort and understanding, but no one really knows how to comfort you when you cant explain to them what is making you feel the way you do. I have a tendency to have every bad thing that’s ever happened to me crash down upon me when I’m stressed out. It’s like I’m going through it all a new. No words were going to make me feel better. In that moment I had never felt more isolated and alone. I was sad, extremely tired of being this sad, and I just wanted it to stop.

Depression is an evil thing to live with. Most people don’t understand it or even try to grasp how you are feeling. In a room full of people you still can feel so alone. You can’t call into work on your weakest days with the reason being you are depressed without some snarky retort. It’s not an acceptable reason in their eyes. You can’t cancel plans with friends or family because you can’t stop crying without a cure all remark of “can’t you just be happy”. As if it were that easy.

Depression had consumed my souls once again and this time I was ready to let it have me.

I don’t remember much after that. I remember going upstairs to work on some shirts for a friend and that is about it. Bits and pieces of a heated conversation between my boyfriend and I. Then the blackness.

I don’t remember what happened after my world went dark, but I do remember coming too and calling my best friend to take me to the hospital. In that moment I knew I made a mistake. My heart began to race. Not from the pills, but from the thought of making a permanent solution to a temporary problem. My boyfriend tried to talk to me but I can’t recall a word he said. My mind was else where I thought of how if I were to die by my own hand that I wouldn’t go to heaven and see my babies I so desperately longed for every second of every day. I thought of my little rebellious ones and who was going to look after and fight for them if I wasn’t around. I thought of my best friends and how they would wonder why I didn’t talk to them more about the sadness in my soul. But most of all I thought of my Papa and how his heart couldn’t take another loss.

Regret set in around the same time as the nausea and foggy bits. They escorted me to a room with a guard where I waited to purge the poison I had ingested. With every heave I cried. Once again alone with my thoughts. For hours I tried to sleep but my nightmares consumed me.

I was given the option of inpatient or an outpatient program. I could do out patient if my friends agreed to sign saying they would ensure I wouldn’t hurt myself again. With the burden of my life being on my friends I knew I had to focus on getting my heart healthy. Over a month in a program called IOP and I was feeling better and ready to go back to work and be around the world again with all their harsh judgment and criticism. I had two more classes when I received a text saying I would be changing classrooms when I returned to work. Inside I was shattered. This would be the second time my job had decided to retaliate against me during a hard time in my life. But I just replied with excitement. Change is something people going through things can’t really handle. Those two more classes turned into another month in therapy.

Tip toeing through conversations. Every choice word well planned and thought out. I felt equipped to handle the world around me with my tool belt full of new knowledge and understanding of my emotional experiences with the stress of my job, the loss of my babies, and the broken ness of my family. “It is what it is” was my mind set returning to the real world. You can’t change people or situations…..but you can accept them and change the way you allow it to effect you. Catty remarks of “how nice of you to come back” were a great welcoming from a few. If they only could experience half the things I’ve had to maybe they would have a heart and not be so callous. But an overwhelming amount of love and support was also showered upon me from several people as well. For those people I am grateful. You never know what someone is going through so why not just be kind?

Life after a breakdown doesn’t feel like life at all. I feel as if I’m floating, just making it through everyday like a dream. I didn’t know how to quit interact with others. “What were they thinking of me?” “Do they think I’m weak?” So many thoughts creeping through my mind.

During these challenging times I’ve learned that I need to ask for help when I need it. My job is just that, a job. It’s not my whole life. If I need to take a day, a week, a month off to gain mental clarity then I need to do just that. Some people are cruel and I just avoid those people. Not everyone is going to understand what you are going through, but some are willing to try. I still look through my therapy notebook on trying days. I’m not fine, but I’m getting better. Stress management is definitely something I am working on. After the loss of my babies I was told often how strong I was. I didn’t feel very strong. I felt weak and bruised. With tears in my eyes and pain in my heart I urge you to hug your “strong friends”, Show people who seem distant a little more compassion then usual. You never really know what anyone is going through in life. The people with the biggest smiles and deepest laughs can be the ones hiding the most pain in their hearts.

Same Song and Dance

“Today is going to be o….” I began to type before deleting the message. Type, reword, delete, type, reword, delete….it’s a vicious cycle that you have put me in. Concocting novels to you used to be as simple as putting my fingers in motion, so why does a simple sentence feel like such a skill to grasp?

Towards the end of my last relationship I was talking to my best friend about how things were going. I remember telling him I could feel the coldness in the already rigid conversations. The lack of interest in each other’s lives being masked with “that’s cool” and on some days utter silence. “If you know it’s coming to an end why don’t you just say goodbye?” I’ve never been good at letting go. Goodbyes have always broken me. The idea of one night falling asleep with someone meaning the world to you, never imagining life without them, to waking up and having the feeling fled has always been so hard for me to navigate. It’s like you just wake up and no longer love a person. What brought you to this point?

Along this spiritual journey I have done many things to make “letting go” that much easier and less traumatic. I’ve taught myself that people, material objects, feelings they are nothing more than just “things” if you give them a special label and hold on to it tight it begins to romanticize it which makes it so hard to say goodbye, but if you cherish it minute by minute and tell yourself that it doesn’t belong to you it makes it that much easier when it’s time to relinquish it. Death is hard. It rattles every fiber in me, but I think having someone no longer want you in their life is harder. That slow distancing song and dance is heart wrenching. I have gotten better at letting go of things that are no longer doing me any good and draining my vibrations, But with you it’s different. You changed me and my coping mechanism way of thinking. I decided on you for an eternity of banter.

When I decide on someone I am choosing them for my whole life. Usually the good bits and the gory ones too. I don’t ever fathom the idea of distance or separation, but with a heart like mine that’s a dangerous thing. With every step backwards in opposing directions I feel a piece break off.

I slowly start to say goodbye to the thought of you and I. Each day creeping closer to the expiration date of who we used to be together. Pointed toes, fidgeting fingers, strung together with well thought out responses. What has gotten us here?

One day at a time

These four walls have never been the same since the day I found out about your existence. This white room, this porcelain tub…. none of it feels the same since that day. This was the room I first saw those two blue lines and this was the room I ran to after I knew I had lost you.

As I soak in the same tub I contracted in I feel so much pain. My heart aches and longs to just know any sense of who you would have been. You would be over a year by now. You would have a new baby sibling and the miscarriage would have never had the chance to happen. I feel guilty when I think of you. My heart broke just the same with the 2nd ectopic and the miscarriage, but for some reason my mind always wanders back to you. My first. My sweet Elowyn.

I thought I knew what love was before you. I thought I had felt a broken heart. But nothing compares to the love I have for you. The moment I knew of you I wanted nothing more but to protect my womb because I knew that was your place of survival. The soul shattering realization that the same body and person that was supposed to protect you is the same reason you aren’t here today. I’ve waited a long time for this pain to lessen. I remember people saying that it wouldn’t hurt so bad after awhile but there are moments when I feel a tinge in my stomach, the same fluttering feeling I would feel when I thought you were thriving inside of me, and suddenly it’s hard to breathe. I’m brought right back into that moment in the hospital when I had to chose between your life and mine. Ive been working hard on myself even though the doctors said that there was nothing I could have done differently it’s hard not to blame myself. I could have been skinnier, I could have done more yoga do eliminate stress, I could have taken more supplements. All these things creep in and I begin to blame myself. I want so badly to try again.

Being a mom and holding my baby is something I want more than the air I breathe, but the joy of pregnancy has been damaged and smudged with chemo shots and multiple hospital visits. Three pregnancies with three angels in heaven has made the thought and idea of pregnancy so traumatic I can’t even fathom what it would be like to bring my sweet angel to term when the time comes. In the months to follow I hope you stay close to me every step of the way. Trying to conceive is hard enough on its own without all the stress of making it past my dreaded 5 week marker. I know that you will be with me helping me through any negative pregnancy test or any slightest twinge I might experience when I do get pregnant again. My sweet first love. I wish you were here with me. Just know that I think and dream of you often.

Sincerely

Your mommy

Keeping On

The taste of last nights antics still lingering on my tongue when I woke this morning. The memories and darkness come creeping in. My soul longing for my next drag and drink. Anything to keep the sadness at bay. Overwhelmed and overloaded. Filling my life with anything to distract me from the fact that my heart is in a dismay.

Weekdays full of work, school, working out. Any down time results in clouds and rain. Get up and go for round 2. Keep on keeping on meaning keep busy so you don’t lose sanity.

To speak my pain into words would mean that it was real and it happened. I won’t allow it. I can’t let this break me. Not again, I tell myself. There’s a dark cloud hanging over my heart.

When the tears begin to fall I know it’s time for another diversion. Anything to create some confusion within myself to make me forget and be filled with something to hide me from my own pain. Illusion after illusion. I jut really miss you.

My mother has decided I have a drinking problem. I’ve decided I have a remedy for an excessive amount of bullshit and pain being dumped on me at any given moment. Enduring pain that would bring grown men to their knees. 3 pregnancies lost in less than two years. A family in disarray. And a love for a father who’s trapped in OZ.

The same thing that can save me is the one thing I’m afraid will kill me. Wants, needs, and desperation. Refusing to open up the slightest afraid that no one will understand. “Cheer up” “You okay?” Stifled with a witty remark.

Attempting to save myself from myself. This was easy the first time around. A false and inaccurate use of the word, but easier compared to now. With every day I got a little bit stronger. I relish for that feeling again. Jealous of the person I was before. Proud for mustering up to courage to push on.

“How do people help you through it when you shut them out?” How hard is it to make yourself vulnerable just to be unheard and misunderstood. Mistakes you can’t allow yourself to make. So you long for the next interference in your heartache.

The weekends creep in and you pray someone calls to fill the next two days with amusement and engross your time until the busy week approaches once again. The two days others long for are the days you despise the most.

Monday comes and your hands are idle no longer.

Keep

On

Keeping

On………….

The Butterfly 

The Butterfly 


I look for signs in every part of my day. A beautiful humming bird is usually my Nana, a sweet dotted ladybug is your oldest sister Elowyn, those magical dragonflies are our sweet Jane, and yesterday when that butterfly entered our classroom…. I knew it was you. I wished and I prayed for you for a very long time. The short week I knew of you I loved you more than words could express. Pregnancy is a really interesting experience. You create this little miracle that you haven’t met yet, but you love it like your whole world depends on it and it alone. You want to protect it from anything that might cause it harm. Including yourself.
This time I was very proactive. I immediately contacted my doctor and began the pokes and the probes. With every prick of the needle I feared if this were the day I would hear that horrific word “ectopic”. I looked for every sign and symptom like the last. But nothing, until the bleeding came. I knew in that moment I had lost you. Shortly after I got the call from the doctor saying she was sorry, but my levels were fading and you were gone. I excused myself to the restroom and cried. “How could this be happening again?” ,I thought to myself, “How can God be so cruel?” I tried my best to compose myself deciding to stay and finish the rest of the day at work so I didn’t have to be at home alone. I went back to the class and began working trying to keep the tears at bay. And then there you were, a beautiful light green butterfly fluttering around our classroom. Looking for a quick way out as soon as you entered. How metaphorical to our situation. Just as quick as we said hello it was already time to say goodbye. I knew I had to be the one to set you free. I approached you and you did not fly away, i sent you all the love I had in my heart and I let you go. 
At the beginning of finding out I was pregnant with you my biggest fear was ectopic pregnancy again. I knew that this time I wouldn’t have the heart to be the one to end your fate. My soul wouldn’t allow it. My biggest regret till this day that eats at me every moment of every day is choosing my life over Elowyn and Janes. The soul person put here to protect them was the one who took them from this world. I knew it would kill me to do it again so I would have to risk it all with you. That’s the conundrum of this whole thing. Yes I am very sad and hear broken that I will not have you in my arms, but I’m relieved that I did everything in my power to protect you this time. You are not leaving at the hands of me.
So I will be seeing you my sweet girl. In every passing butterfly. Sending you love and hugs with every prayer at night. You were wanted and wished for. Created with love beyond this worlds ability to express. You were just to good for this Earth and God knew it. I’ll dream of you until we see each other in heaven.
Love you my little butterfly