I was never taught to love myself. All the different parts of me that make me unique. I was never taught to be unapologetically flawed. Many days I’m not sure how I’ve made it this far… the self-hate was debilitating. Everyday I painted a smile on my face and got up to face another day. When all the while I was dying inside. Death was eating away at every part of me. I lived in fear constantly. Sleeping with knives under my pillow. Thinking tonight would be the night it all ended. Startled out of my sleep by the sound of shouting. I remember feeling as if my heart would beat out of my chest. I remember thinking someone may die tonight. I remember thinking why is it always me? Why am I the one putting myself in danger to make sure nothing permanent happens?
Why doesn’t anyone see the lies behind my smile? The violence just under the surface? Locking myself in my room didn’t help to quite the voices. Locking myself in my room didn’t make what was going on go away. When most people think of abuse they think of the physical but no one recognizes that sometimes the emotional abuse is a pill much harder to swallow. For years I hated my existence. I didn’t understand why my family life wasn’t perfect. I didn’t understand why it seemed like the walls were closing in on me. I grew up before I should have. Surprised a lot of the pain. The shame. The misery. The hate I have is still strong… it’s still pure. What happens when you don’t feel safe at home… the one place you should above all others? What happens when grown men try to force themselves on you and you feel you have nowhere but to turn? I was never taught to love myself so I went searching for it in all the wrong places. It’s hard to dispel the cycle. It’s hard to remove yourself from the continuous loop. It’s hard to break the silence. I should have left.
I stared death in the face a time or two and I’m surprised I’m still here. I was threatened in high school. Told I would be tossed out a two-story window… in the place I was supposed to feel safe. Loved. Protected. Instead I felt fear. Hopelessness. Rage. Why would you let your child endure such hardships? Why would you stay? Most importantly why the hell did I?