being depressed feels like a bonfire trying to give me a hug. it feels like someone has replaced my brain with mashed potatoes. it feels like that exact moment when a paper cut happens, over and over.
if i reject the name you gave me,
just know that it is not because she was never mine,
but instead that i grew up and out of her
like every pair of lee jeans or oshkosh
you ever bought for me at k-mart.
know that when i think of the name i leave behind,
i’ll remember her only with a tender softness:
printed on a name tag with circus animals on my desk in second grade,
shouted with a sharp tongue into the sweaty dusk of summer
when it was time to come home for dinner,
and typed with precision on every rejection and acceptance letter
left in our mailbox during my junior year.
know that i leave the name you gave me with love,
as all things should be left,
and everything that she ever was
will live on in the person i have yet to become.
i would not be me without her,
and i would not have been her without you.
finally, know that when i drop jessica’s -ica
she’ll land safely in the mouth of a mother
exhaling the tail end of the name of her new baby girl,
and that name will fit her
like a brand new pair of lee jeans
valerie: “see, i’ve worked in state hospitals, and this place is a five-star hotel. you know, i can take a lot of crazy shit from a lot of crazy people. but you? you are not crazy.”
susana: “then what’s wrong with me, huh? what the fuck is going on inside my head?”
valerie: “you’re a lazy, self-indulgent little girl who is driving herself crazy.”
if you are a dude i basically hate you by default until proven otherwise and will use your tears about this post to bathe in for all eternity
in the winter of 2008 you got fucked in a barnes & noble bathroom and convinced yourself you were in love.
almost exactly a year before, you were holding a knife to your neck on a new year’s eve adderall and jealousy binge. you spent ten hours in the psych ward still wearing your new year’s black tie.
when you tell both of these stories, you often omit the parts about your neck, and being in love.
today it has been 9 months. io asks her mom what her sister would be doing right now if she could have come home. jenny responds, “crawling, and biting stuff, and getting into your toys.”
i) you are not as fragile as you have perceived yourself to be, even in your most vulnerable moments.
ii) you are not as hardened as you would like to portray to potential friends, lovers, and anyone else who might try to crawl inside your heart.
iii) your hands will always tremble, your teeth will always be slightly crooked, and your eyes will always give away your emotions.
iv) though you have become cautious, you are not fooling yourself or anyone else by denying that you know what it’s like to be in real love.
v) the mistakes you’ve made are outshined by your ability to forgive others.
vi) get more sleep.
things will be done to your body. you will consent to all of them but only because you want to stay alive. things will be put into your body, taken from you. it will hurt and it will be embarrassing.
you will not think jokes about death are funny.
you will feel assaulted. you will not feel relieved, except on a very simplistic emotional level. you will be terrified. you will watch your relationships morph and change. you will feel ugly. you will say words you never thought you’d say, and have feelings you never thought you’d feel. you will feel inexplicably angry. you will be set off by statistics.
you will feel entitled to live. you are - but not any more than anyone else. this will haunt you.
you will spend money you don’t have in order to live. you will allow doctors to misgender you in order to live. you will let people see you naked, touch your body, put needles and objects into your skin, watch you vomit, watch you cry. you will let them give you scans, enemas, ultrasounds. you will do all of this while your well-meaning loved ones on the outside scream “resist the medical industrial complex!” and try to give you holistic advice. you will pay any amount to live. you will turn off your feelings and let them touch you, look at you, hurt you, because you want to live. you want to live and it’s not about the man because the man isn’t the one who breathes for you.
in the amount of time it took me to determine whether apologizing to you would be appropriate, i’d already walked out the door
two men were standing on the sidewalk outside in a way where i had to walk between them. one said, “oooh” and the other said “suck my dick”
i didn’t feel sorry anymore, to any of the men.
sometimes this world is too hard and my body is far too queer and my face gets too soft when i feel emotions and everyone can tell