“Life is not a game!”
“You only live once!”
“You’re special. You can have whatever you want!”
I’ve been lied to my entire life. By media, by authority figures, by friends & family, and worst of all by myself. Life is a game, there are many lives to behold and I’m not special nor can I have whatever I want. I can, however, be especially welcome to have whatever they want me to want.
It never occurred to me, until just now in this very moment as I write this, listening to the bass vibrate the flooring from the party raging above me, whilst my roommate breathes rhythmically a few feet asleep from me, and the rare and welcoming pattering of rain darting on the windows. The rain reminds me of being home and being unable to rest. Being unable to provide my family with a version of myself that was the best instead of performing at the top like I could, I did much less.
To me it was simple really, I wasn’t stimulated enough to progress. I was given a set of rules, sold a bunch of sayings, and nothing was enough to make me invest. Instead of telling me the answers or molding me to the party line rules, I should have been given a set of questions that would penetrate my whole being and show me what I am and better yet who I am.
It wasn’t until my 31st year (last year) I was presented with a question that made me take a deeper, harder, rawer, look at myself and really tear up layer upon layer of defense mechanisms and reveal what the culprit was which was impeding my reach to me.
It was a question a relatively new friend had asked me when she let me live on her couch for 2 weeks in her studio apt. in Hollywood no questions asked. She housed me, fed me, and revived me. The question she asked seemed like such a simple one, but it wasn’t question anyone had ever thought to ask me, most likely because it’s not a question anyone had probably ever asked themselves.
“What’s broken inside you?”
What’s, what? I thought retaliatory, but as fast as I thought it, I dismissed it. I thought for a moment. What is broken inside me? Broken? Well, I’d just recovered from a massive heartbreak and a traumatic fracturing of my right ankle, but those answers didn’t suffice for my zany friend. She encouraged me to go deeper.
“There’s something that isn’t right inside of you. You’re too smart, too beautiful, too popular, too interesting, and too strong to be homeless with nowhere to go and have nothing to show. So, I have to know… what in you is broke?”
I spouted answer after answer. Shed layer after layer. Unveiled my fears, my tears, and more of myself to her than I ever had to anyone before. Yet she wouldn’t back down. She now had me teetering on the edge of all which I had kept dormant, but didn’t dare exhume. Then boom! I figured it out, the one thing that was keeping me in gloom, the one aspect that was likely the most obvious thing in the room, but for me was the doorway to doom, the one thing I buried so deep revealing it would cause me to bloom.
I have never felt good enough nor accepted in my life by anyone. Especially, myself. My whole life had been wasted, getting wasted, and gaining external acceptance because I didn’t want to accept myself. Even though I knew this my entire life I still ignored it. However, this time was different because here was someone letting me stay in their home based solely off my reputation… I had been accepted all this time, but I had not chosen to accept myself and there for I shamed myself to gain sympathy.
The next day I woke up brand new, ready to conquer the world, ready to shed the lies and live my truth. I started to admit things I kept hidden, for instance, I love women.
I have my entire life. I thought about all the friends I had from childhood until kidulthood. They were all the same. I harbored sexual feelings about them, but that had been extremely disgusting and abhorrent in my family so I buried those emotions along with the notion that I was never good enough for anyone because I would never be the little girl my family wanted. In my little child mind I was just a burden to my father and bother to my mother, a joke to my cousins and annoying to my aunts & uncles.
Little kid me would spend all grown up me’s life trying to deal with it, but I wouldn’t let her. I kept her well distracted with booze, other people’s news, sports, school, watching TV and breaking rules all that and dealing with tampons and pubes or how come I wanted to touch boobs.
What was broken in me? My spirit, my attempt to grow, my heart, but most of all my self. An aspect of myself that was arguably very important to the development of my identity and personality. I’d suppressed it for so long it became a myriad of other issues blinding me from the real problem. I grew up being what everyone wanted me to be and allowing them to be whomever they felt comfortably and never once would I judge or ask forcibly. I was afraid to feel in case it might reveal my sapphic zeal thus being of less appeal. I was never real, I was real broken and I was ready to heal.
When I was able to fully comprehend and was no longer able to pretend. Then on the second to last day of my two week allotment I found an apartment, an apartment I could afford, one that I could enjoy, and one that was available the very next day.
Strangely enough, this apartment was outside of Hollywood and away from everything that represented my past. So, I moved out of La La Land and into the Universal Gateway where I was able to begin not with a new me, no with the original me, the person I should have been and always meant to be.
When my zany friend provided me with a question and forced me to find the truth because I didn’t have an answer or a succinct quip to suffice, only a simple question to rely on which caused me to reach beyond and entice.
I will be forever grateful to her persistence & existence because without her there would be whole, a new me, piled atop the other “new me’s” which were holding me back significantly. 32 years later and I finally am becoming what I intended to achieve originally. Seeing with the eye inside of me, not being swayed by the systematic beliefs of those asleep extrinsically, courageously questioning myself intrinsically.