I walk through a forest preserve to clear my head and get some fresh aid. As I walk, I see two trails in different directions. One to the left, and one to the right. No trail markers, just two paths forcing you to make a decision. It seems like it would be such a simple decision yet if you really think about it, its a difficult decision to make. I see it like this, one path is the choice of recovery, the choice of taking care of myself, and the choice to accept my future. The other path however, is no change, no recovery, only putting others first, and pretending everything is okay. Everyone tells me to chose the path of recovery and self love but something always holds me back. Am I truly ready for recovery? Am I ready to love myself? Am I ready to face the shame? I stare down both paths seeing the good and bad to both. Which path should I go down? I talk about this trail but, this is what recovery looks like to me. A constant decision making process with no right or wrong, everything is grey. I take one step forward and look down both paths one more time before starting to walk down the path or recovery. I may stop sometimes and take on or two steps back but, I always continue to take more steps down the path of recovery. I will always make mistakes along the way but, I will always continue walking down the trail or recovery.
I walk into a room and ask for a table for four. They ask, “Who are you waiting for?” and I say “No one, they are already here.”. The waiter, clearly puzzled, walks me to my table and walks away. Only I see who I am sitting with because, they are already with me, all day, everyday. I don’t always talk to them or respond when they talk to. me but, they always follow. A party of four, depression, anxiety, PTSD, and I. That all talk while I sit with them quietly but, I can’t ask them to leave because they never leave. Everyday is a constant battle as I try to get rid of them forever, even though that might be impossible. I try to fight them until they all share on chair quietly in the corner but, most likely they will never completely leave. We will always be ‘four’ however, I will only need a table for one.
The waiter walks up to me and asks, “How many people?” and I proudly say “Just one.”
We write in pencil so that we can erase our mistake or anything we don’t like. We only use pen when we know we won’t make any mistakes, or when signing something important so we can’t quickly erase it if we change out mind. I think that’s why so many people write in pencil, if they make a mistake they think it doesn’t mean anything. The thing is, what we say and do in life is all written in pen. There is no eraser to take back whatever action we decided we didn’t like in the first place. Stop using pencil, stop being afraid of making a mistake or showing you aren’t perfect. Write in pen, be confident, be proud, accept your mistakes and be okay with nothing being truly perfect. Show the world who you are, WRITE IN BOLD! You were made to write in pen, otherwise you wouldn’t have been given one.
I admit my mistakes, not always to others but to myself. Some say that doesn’t really mean admitting my mistakes but, I view it as owing no one a explanation. This is me, not you. This seems frequently lost in translation because some still look for this explanation even after hearing “no”. Why would anyone think they have rights over my body after 20 years? Those rights expired on my 18th birthday and I didn’t exactly let anyone sign up for those rights again, yet they felt entitled to them and took them. Who knows, maybe I gave some of them away. I still let others speak and I take what is said into consideration but, when it comes down to making a decision, I’m the one signing the contract of life. What I have never really been able to understand is why we are forced to begin inclement in this contract the second we are born. I earned the rights to the contract at age 18 but, not completely. No matter what, I cannot terminate this contract unless I tear it apart. Doing this however, makes the original owners of the contract break. After all, they loved the contract beyond belief even after losing rights to it. I may no longer like all of the pages I have signed in this contract, but I can pick some words from each page and slowly change them one by one in the future. Someday I will love signing a new page everyday but, its okay if that day isn’t today.
I look in the mirror. Why. These marks are like a roadmap wrote on my body in permanent marker. They fade with time unless the map is re-written. I run out of room in one spot so the map extends to other parts of my body, some places easier to hide than others. I am used to these maps on my skin and watching them fade. The more it fades, the more I wish I could re-write it somewhere else. These maps hurt when being written but, I get a release from the maps and I constantly want more. The struggle is to constantly hide these maps since many people don’t understand why I would like these maps written all over my body. I am a series of roadmaps being wrote on my skin with cuts, bruises, and scars.