Sometimes I have so much to say and no way to say it.
The words echoed in the room, bouncing off walls, reinforcing the loneliness I already felt deep in my heart but was too afraid to speak into life. I was always taught that words were cheap. That talk was cheap. That my words could mean absolutely nothing so it was better to stay silent.
My therapist readjusted her chair and absorbed the silence comfortably. I squirmed. A few choice words came to mind but I tried to hold her gaze steadily. I hate being on the spot. I am incredibly good at being unreadable, I thought. It’s my strength. That session, in my head, was over, and I never wanted to go back.
She waited, I waited. The silence was getting unbearable.
What if you could speak? I thought. The words would be too ugly, too false, too accusative.
Then she said a word that I haven’t heard spoken by another soul in a long time.
Abuse. Abuse is why you feel like you have to be impenetrable. Unreadable.
It’s an ugly word. It’s a dirty word. It’s an accusation of the profoundest sense because it implies the trashing of character. And she had just brought this into a safe place.
And then the tears came. And they wouldn’t stop. Sometimes our hearts know more than our head.
And sometimes realizations almost kill us.
I went to the grocery after the session and I dropped everything on the floor. I was so shaken that I couldn’t control my movements. The poor clerk stocking everything was so nice and polite and asked if I was ok, if there was anyone he could call. I managed to pay for the things and run out.
People ask why hurting people don’t ask for help.
This is why: Because we’ve learned to live with the pain. We’ve learned to stuff it under the rug and let it out when no one is around. We’ve learned to whisper it into the night. But asking for help is an admission of the weakness that caused our hurt to begin with. Much like an addict, we refuse to run back to the things that broke us and start again, we only use the coping mechanisms we’ve learned since then. We refuse to be broken again, and it’s the key to our undoing.
I’m still in therapy. It’s the brutally hardest thing I’ve ever chosen in my life. I (forgive the language) fucking hate it. But I choose it because I refuse to be this person anymore, and I have this hope that someday there is a light on the other side of the tunnel, even if it means that I have to leave the safety of the darkness.
I don’t have any wise words, but I have these hands with scars, and I’m more than willing to show you them. To hold your hand and walk with you together into the path of healing, if that’s what you’re interested in. And if not, say a little prayer for me to whatever god you believe in as I walk through the darkness.