Where, hours/days/weeks/months sometimes years later you still aren’t sure how you feel about them?
I have crying fits. I’m not fond of them, whether or not they’re ‘justifiable’. They’re annoying and inconvenient.
A few weeks back, something set me off, and I went into the bathroom to cry myself out quietly- and this little girl, this baby, seventeen years old, she comes in to check her hair and straighten her skirt, and then she sees me and comes and sits with me and starts asking me why I’m crying.
Not ‘are you ok?’ which I know, is kinda a dumb question to someone who obviously isnt, but it’s a nice, tactful way of asking if someone wants to talk about it.
I tell her I will be, sometimes I just get overwhelmed and start crying. All the women in my family are criers. I used to think my mom was kinda a weirdo for bursting into tears at the drop of a hat haha karma y’know? (because like, who wants to bear their soul about deeply horrific personal scarring to a complete stranger without even the veil of the internet? seriously)
this bright eyed baby girl proceeds to tell me how weird I am, and how maybe it’s just her, but she’s been through a lot in her life and she just doesn’t cry, because “I guess I’m just a really strong person.”
And I just started cracking up- and I feel like such a monster and I’m so proud of myself because she had no idea how close she came to serious harm.
Its a different kind of angry than when someone hurts you, when someone tells you you’re weak for breaking under the strain (not even the ‘you don’t have a reason to be crying’, but the ‘reason doesn’t matter you’re just not keeping up appearances’). I think ice really is a perfect metaphor for it. It feels very calm, and cold, and clear.
I’m going to take you apart. I thought. You think you’ve been hurt? You think you’ve been confused? You think you’ve been hopeless and in pain and afraid? Look at you, fed and clean and kept and believing you are inherently worth anything?
And I am frightened at myself.
But I’m also a little proud. Because I took a deep breath and I reminded myself that while she didn’t know a thing about me neither did I know her story.
And when I was seventeen I thought the same way. I was strong- I had proved myself, I was a survivor. And I had no idea what was about to hit me, but I think, that bravado may have saved my life.
Because we have to believe we are strong enough to face our next battle. You can survive without truly living but you have to have that base- you are still breathing, therefore you are winning, if you are to have any kind of hope for a life beyond that. It’s hope that keeps us going. Not the ‘happily ever after’ hope that things will get better, but the ability to say ‘this is not going to kill me because I damn well say so.’
So while I still want to slap her. I also feel a bit sorry for her. Life is going to take my revenge, and I would spare her that, if I could.
Still want to slap her.