In second grade I thought I was going to grow up to become a librarian. In fourth grade I saw a documentary about a cave diving marine biologist and decided I’d become a scientist, a dream that lasted until my senior year in high school when I realized I didn’t in fact like studying biology at all. Never through all those years did I think I’d grow up to be a poet. It’s a passion I fell into through taking a chance, one that took coaxing to start, but one I will never regret.
I’ve written a lot about heartbreak lately, as I’m sure you’ve noticed. Poetry is the outlet that lets me heal, my real true love. No matter where my heart drifts or cracks, it will always have a home in words. Thank you for listening and letting me sing.
I often tell people that my blog followers know more about me than anyone. I’ve never felt afraid to spill my secrets on here, mostly because I’ve only ever received support, never judgment. I like that I can write about my insecurities and struggles like I would in a journal entry, a freedom I’ve come to rely on, one that has helped me immensely in gaining confidence. I’ve started to appreciate my vulnerability as a strength and have realized that if I don’t have any fear to write about having an eating disorder or obsessions over boys on my blog, then there is no reason to hide that honesty from the people in my daily life.
I used to bottle my emotions. I never wanted to burden anyone around me with what I was feeling and my silence drove me over the edge. Few knew that I was spending my free time sobbing in my car, driving through a veil of water, alone and lost. I kept it all in until I didn’t know how to handle it anymore and I came to the conclusion that the only way to make the pain stop was to kill myself. This was 3 years ago, a time I never want to relive. I use music, writing, and an always jam-packed social life to make sure I never have to.
Since then, I’ve made it my mission to be honest with myself about my emotional health and also honest with the people around me. I don’t hide my struggles. In fact, I embrace them. I’m not afraid anymore to text a good friend and say, “hey, I’m struggling. Are you free?” What I’ve learned is astonishing. The more that I open up, the more the people around me feel comfortable to open up. It turns out that we are all fighting battles and most of us are holding them in. Now that I know the importance of talking through my insecurities, aches, and irrationalities, it’s become my mission to help the people around me open up too.
One of my best friends said recently that he wasn’t sure why, but whenever he hung out with just me, he felt comfortable talking about what was bothering him. I think it’s because we trust each other, a trust that was built upon a mutual understanding that we could be straight with one another. I will always have your back if you have mine, an unspoken agreement that started with honesty about what was below the surface.
My point with all this is that if I didn’t have poetry or this amazing community on here to help me work through all this, I’d still be that girl that hides how I’m feeling, invisible because I was too scared to let anyone see me. I thought, if I just hide my flaws, then I’ll be safe. I couldn’t have been more wrong. I’m the safest when I expose my quirks, even the embarrassing ones, like having no self control in how often I text boys I have crushes on or that I like “16 year old girl” music. I want people to see ME, to know ME, to appreciate ME, because there is no other version of ME that should ever exist.
Thank you for sticking with me. You have my back and I promise, I have yours.
It’s almost 2 in the morning and my eyes are burning from keeping them open too long. I didn’t sleep much last night either. I have this frustrating urge to keep fighting, to push a little longer. I don’t think I’ve ever posted a poem this late, or early, depending on how you see it, but I couldn’t help myself. I needed to get these words out. I needed to try. I just need to keep trying.
Good night now,
I’ve started writing in a diary. I’ve found I like the senseless entries, writing whatever comes to my mind, confessing secrets, knowing no one is ever going to read these words (hopefully). One of my favorite teachers back in college used to tell us to write for 15 minutes a day, no matter what it was. The whole point was to develop the discipline to write. I used to write lists of what I did that day or complain about my homework. But then I finished that class and the journal entries stopped.
About two months ago I started them again, maybe not every single day, but whenever I feel like it. This poem is inspired by what I wrote in my journal today during my lunch break, scribbles about it being February and how it’s the month of love. It provoked a particular memory, something profound that happened to me in a February past, and before I knew it, I’d written this poem.
What do you think of when you think of February?