true love

when i was in my early twenties
a therapist tried to get me to
& to figure myself
i skipped town
& went on a cross-country
20 year long
after a year (or more–depending)
of no men
i have found that i am doing that work
i mean
i have always had the hobby
of self-analyzation
but with only four kids to distract me
i can really get work done
on me
& you know what i figured out?
i am still
still that twenty-something
year old girl
i am still her
but now–now i have learned
(am learning)
how to be her
how to be true to her
how to be the best me


dark flame

when i was nineteen i went into therapy for the first time. i was dating a man who would lock me in his basement/bedroom to keep me from leaving. escaping is one of my go-to defenses, so this was pretty devastating to me. he was one of the most awful people i knew and i knew this before dating him–and still felt attracted to him. so i started therapy.

i was unhappy without knowing i was unhappy. i mean, i considered myself an optimist even though my mom said i was a pessimist and another boyfriend labelled me a nihilist…or was it a fatalist?

anyhoo. i was unhappy without realizing it. or maybe it was that i had hidden my happiness so far away that i had forgotten where it was. i was also afraid. ever since i was a little kid. terrified of the dark. so afraid!

but in therapy, one day, it felt like a miracle, i found my happy. and i was no longer afraid. i didn’t realize i was no longer afraid until later that day…or that week…when a lightbulb needed to be changed in a storage room in the attic of the rooming house i lived in. to whomever was with me, i said, “i can’t go in there. i’m afraid of the dark.” and then, without thinking, i walked right in, fearlessly.

the miracle felt like a glowing in my chest. i could feel it like i can feel myself blinking, breathing, my heart beating. i could feel it in my chest.

i confessed to my miracle-worker of a therapist that i was afraid i would lose it again. that it would go away. i compared my fear to the story flowers for algernon. where someone is given the gift of intelligence, and then has to watch as it slips away again.

she assured me that it was mine to keep.

and it has stayed there. i check on it. sometimes it is small & hard to find. sometimes it is bursting out of me.

lately i have begun to wonder if i can share it? can i spread it around? infect others with my own happiness?

i remember that i have at times infected others with my seething anger. pushing & pushing it out of me until it clings onto someone else and i am free of it….

two days ago, i accidentally pushed too much of my happy out and left myself empty.

yesterday i left my happy unprotected and allowed someone to crush it.

today i am recovering. wondering how to do it right. do i keep trying? do i hide it away again? i don’t want to  hide it away anymore.

when i open myself up, i can feel it in my whole chest, glowing. a brilliant flame. it feels amazing.
so how do i share it without depleting it? without losing it to careless strangers?


i’m writing this because no one ever responds when i ask for feedback

when i was nineteen, i started going to therapy because i was dating a guy who i knew was bad for me, but i could not break up with him.
i knew he was bad for me before i even started dating him. me & another friend would make fun of him all the time calling him “geek lord” and telling each other horrible true stories about him. lets call him “lester.”
lester was all industrial & goth (it was the early 90’s.) he owned a “mystic bookstore” and was a total pervert. he would brag about how many times a day he masturbated–while attending to his store. he was so lazy he would pee in a pitcher instead of walking to the bathroom.
so i knew he was gross.
but i also knew he had the hots for me.
and somehow i started dating him. i’m not sure how it happened. i only know that i have extraordinarily low self-esteem and just want people to love me but cannot believe that anyone can actually love me.
so i started dating the “geek lord,” and he would do things like lock me in his basement to keep me from storming off. he once called my answering machine (the 90’s remember) and  left between 20 & 50 messages starting with “fuck you, bitch,” and ending with him softly moaning along to a ministry song.
everyone i knew told me to break up with him.
“i know i should,” i would answer, but i would stay.

so i started going to therapy.

among many other things, my therapist told me i had the social skills of a five year old. i was nineteen at the time.

the social skills of a five year old.


i eventually broke up with him for good. i was trying to shop & he wouldn’t let me shop. that is a weird line in the sand especially considering i really don’t like shopping. however, i had decided i needed to change my wardrobe. if i just changed my wardrobe, everything would magically be better, right?
so i needed to change my wardrobe.
years later i realize that this is part of having anxiety & ocd…but back then i just recognized it as a need that i need need needed.
lester went shopping with me. but every store it was all about him & what would he look good in? then he got tired of shopping and insisted i was done.
i refused to stop, and he tried to force me into his car.

so i ran. literally.
and then i changed my phone number.
i changed my locks.
i stopped going anywhere in that small college town that i might see lester.

it was the first time i had to go to extremes like that…but not the last.

so i am sitting here. feeling defeated about no one responding to my blog. no one responding to my facebook. and jenny lawson not validating my existence. so i am alone; alone and arguing with children and dogs. all while i have just gone to extreme measures to break up with yet another abusive narcissist whom i desperately looked for love from…

and i wonder…where are my social skills now? have i made it any further?

and wondering if maybe my therapist was being generous in her assessment.

why am i so needy? why am i always searching for that love i believe i will never find? why does it feel like a knife in my heart when i look at someone else’s blog and their “about” page has more likes than my blog has in its entirety? what does it matter…or why does it matter?

but it does, somehow.

fuck. i just feel so alone.

and i read jenny lawson’s book, and i sob because she might be fucked up…but she has people who love her. i don’t have that.

and worse…i can’t even imagine having it.