People are fragile. We all sit in display in dusty, long-forgotten rooms, like pieces of china ready to shatter at the bang of a door. We are put on pedestals and expected to stay up there — these are unsafe expectations for denizens made of glass.
We are so fragile that even occurrences from years and years past still leave marks. Sometimes, we are so unaware of our own fragility, that it takes years and years to realize that we have been experiencing the fallout of our own personal disasters for a long time.
* * *
I was sexually molested as a little girl. What he did, what he made me do — they are as misty as morning fog. I can still remember, but sometimes it seems so far away, like a dream.
The molestation itself is not what haunts me. It is the ripple effects that still leave me unsteady, and prevent me from gathering myself up again — like the fact that my sexual life did not start appropriately, or that I had a very unhealthy view of sex for a long time. My self-destructiveness rendered my body into trash, to be disposed of to anyone who paid attention to me, anyone who would bother to notice me, pick me up, use me, then throw me away.
I equated my self-worth with how effectively I could seduce someone.
“Love” was lust and being used. Jealousy was my go-to reaction when that attention I desperately craved was taken away.
My self-destructiveness eventually evolved into people-pleasing. I would bend over backwards, turn myself inside out, etc. for individuals whose approval I wanted — i.e. everybody. I would always allow the other party to wield more power, because I felt like I did not have the right to put my own needs first. I had the perception that I was helpless to change my circumstances. I always had an excuse for keeping quiet or for giving in:
“I’m not an expert on this,”
“I don’t want to be an inconvenience,”
“I should just be content with what I have.”
After several heartbreaks and a couple regrets, I finally grew the instinct for self-preservation.
I had to protect myself — I was the only one who could.
I finally realized that my mind and soul, though deeply damaged, are worth saving. Through a few well-chosen friends, I finally realized that my mind and soul, though rather twisted, are worth celebrating. I am worth it.
* * *
As fragile folk, we need to recognize that the damage done to us does not lessen our worth. We are all imperfect and flawed, and we all absolutely need to be celebrated. There is no one like us—there is no one else like you—and we are all worthy of healthy, healing love. Sometimes, the hardest part is loving yourself, you with all your chips and cracks and stains and fractures.
People are fragile, and when the bang of a door knocks us off our precarious pedestals, we shatter and leave a glorious mess on the floor. But I am slowly learning to smile to myself, as it takes courage to leave my broken shards out on the floor, to better inspect them, and know that I can recover, all the wiser for it.
I am still working on being more gentle with myself, and to become accustomed to the idea that I was not—am not—the one to blame for the traumatic periods of my life.
You have power, I am learning to whisper to myself with love.
It is my mantra every time I see the sunrise.
Daily Post daily prompt: Fragile