Denial: Give in or give out

I have never been a person of duty. Never have I let something as unimaginative as obligation weigh me down. What is this word, “obligation”? I do what I want, even if it’s irrational… even if it’s selfish.

See, when I deny myself something, it starts to fester — whether it’s dissatisfaction with my partner, a difference of opinion with my friend, or a long-dormant resentment towards a family member, it never fails to ooze out over time. I know I’ve let it remain under wraps for too long, when my demeanor towards them starts to change, through no fault of their own.

Denial is a slow-burning creature. It’s there. It stares you in the face. And when you turn to the other direction to avoid it, maddeningly, it will readjust itself to look you in your eyes again. It accumulates, the more real estate you give it.

The only positive way to handle denial is to succumb to it. It’s one of those things, where, the more resistance you give, the more it will push back. I always give in, in the end. I’ve taken the day off, and broken relationships, and dropped bombs on my family because I didn’t want denial to dominate my being.

Obligation is just the martyr-child of denial. It may be selfish to surrender to denial, but in the end it’s self-care.


Daily Post prompt: Denial

My sponge friend

ba455a17e02fa54d34c0c250f9d3bcda

* * *

I miss you.

I heard a friend today talk about the courage it takes to make that leap of faith of being with that person who loves you and terrifies you because of what they bring to your world.

It reminded me of you, and how you used to tell me that it hurt that I never believed in us enough… That it just hurt because I didn’t reciprocate that hope. I didn’t have the courage back then. I used to wonder how different my life would have become if I’d taken that leap of faith.

More so these days, I am simply missing you and your presence in my life. These days, I am constantly pushing myself to be the best communicator I can be, and this is oftentimes where my thoughts drift back to you — I think, wow, I was always so good at communicating with him. He always helped me be the best communicator I could be. 

When I spent time with you, I felt counted and real. I felt like a sponge, just absorbing all of life and participating in the grandest way.

I miss being your friend, and having someone in my life who just gets it. Gets me. Gets everything that comes out of my mouth. It’s nothing romantic — really, it’s just my soul going, “Huh. Well, there’s that thing missing. Wonder when we can resume that. Because it was awesome.”

So there. I miss you, simply you. I hope your life is copacetic. I hope we can be friends again soon.

* * *

ღ, ts

Betrayed by a “maybe”

The-sad-thing-about-betrayal-is-the-fact-that-it-n

Sometimes I think, did my mother really allow her daughter to get molested?

Sometimes I think, did she know the extent of the harm she was causing by allowing this to happen?

Sometimes I think, did she know she had inflicted permanent scars upon me the very day she found out and made silence her response?

* * *

I remember the day I confronted her. We were in my stepdad’s office. We were glowering at each other. I had done something despicable to her, and I, stubbornly unapologetic, thought that moment opportune to turn it around on her.

I said, “Ma, did you know what [he] did to me?” I paused and tried to read the expression on her face. She gave nothing away yet. “Did you know he was touching me inappropriately back on the island?”

Her lips pursed, and she looked sideways, almost as if the memory could be found splattered on the wall or something. Then she looked back at me with searing eyes and said, “Maybe. I think so.”

I was rendered so numb by her answer that I forgot I was staring at her. It was like I blacked out with my eyes wide open.

All I could do was think back to all the little hints from my childhood that possibly implicated her:

When he would pick me up right in front of her and jokingly tell her I would have the body of a porn star when I got older … When he would keep asking me to give him a forehead massage right in front of her … When he would stay home while she would run errands …

* * *

Sometimes it feels like a bad dream. But I knew it was reality as soon as I heard my mother confirm my worst fear. Screw her half-assed “maybe”. She knew. And over the course of my childhood, she let it happen.


Daily Post Prompt: Maybe

Oh, these cravings

18af03724ecf55af60b0d0a36c9f0365

the air

There are some days I want to experience air. A big, unapologetic whiff that makes my nostrils flare and my chest visibly expand. Some days, in the constant walk-a-thon that is my job, I feel like I truly take air for granted. When I feel this way, I stop and glance around, like I’m seeing my surroundings for the first time. Then I breathe, starting slow in the pit of my stomach, making note of the flavors that enter my nasal passage. Once I reach the peak of my breath, I savor the deliciousness of the view. Then I make my way down the valley of my exhalations, careful not to fall over the edge and release too quickly.

the strangers

There are some days I crave male attention. When I was sixteen, and my mother would drive us south every weekend for several hours, I would relish making eye contact with some truck driver, or a man in some Subaru. I would make believe the man was intrigued by my lovely cheekbones, in the partial shadow of the passenger seat. I would hold the gaze for as long as I dare, feeling desired, if only for a few seconds. I thought that if they couldn’t see the rest of me — just my long, black hair and intense gaze — that would make me more desirable … at least, more desirable than if my awkward body were set against the backdrop of high school lockers and bland classrooms. Sometimes, I still feel like I’m sixteen, falling in love with strangers.

the salt & the sea

There are some days I yearn for the sea. I am convinced salt water is my element. Warm, cold, turbulent, calm — doesn’t matter. If it’s salty, if it’s endless, if it hits the sand … then it is truly mine. I used to climb coconut trees, collect shells, run like a madman along the beaches with my dogs. All of this was with the sea to my side, the briny wind on my face, two giants embracing me as I played. You know how you hear the ocean in a shell when held up to your ear? Some sunrises and sunsets here, in the city I live in, truly feel like a shell is being held up to my ear.