2010 – Story Starter #16

Fandango has a weekly Story Starter to get us writing some new goodies on our blogs, and it’s a great way to get a story started and be inspired to write.

This week’s Story Starter teaser is:

It was in the spring of 2010 when I first realized that I could…

free myself from the grips of a man who will never like me, let alone love me. I had thought in the beginning that he was the perfect one for me, but I could not have been more wrong. He was toxic, and I knew I needed to get away from his narcissisms. A chance came about where he went to jail for not paying his child support, and I made the attempt to keep him away. One of my friends drove all the way from Michigan to come and help me out. He had left me financially broken, which was not something that was new. I never had my own money, only his. That’s another way of many that he controlled me, with money. The other ways were with cars and forcing me to take drugs.

I had many different vehicles that he sold or trashed that belonged to me only for short moments. When he bought a vehicle for himself, it would be a manual transmission, since he knew I could not drive a stick. It required too much coordination, and I was not a fan of shifting gears. I was more of a put it into gear and go kind of girl. This disadvantage of mine, he used to his advantage to keep me home like a hermit. My only refuge away from the loneliness was my online gaming and social media. That wasn’t so bad, I guess. I got to interact with people who I found to be decent people, but I just had a small group of friends that could never save me from my solitude. It was what it was, but I knew I needed to get away or push him out.

As if the control with money and cars wasn’t enough, he then started bringing home drugs and telling me I was so fat that I needed to do them. When you are under control of another person, the manipulation of your mental health is easy, so I complied due to my self-hate that I already had about myself. He used my own issues with myself against me, and I did what he said. He brought home meth, and I either snorted it or smoked it. It would keep me up for days though, which was almost a good side effect to the drugs. I’m not proud of the fact that I did not have the willpower to not do them, but they saved me from a lot of sexual abuse while sleeping. If I wasn’t asleep, he couldn’t get at me like he normally did. I embraced that fact about the meth. It saved me a little bit from more abuse.

When he got put in jail, everything was a little less heavy, and I went to visit him to tell him that he was not allowed to come home. At this time, we were not legally married, and I owned the house and land that we lived on. My mom gave it to me in an attempt to keep me from ever being homeless. My friend, who we will just call T.G., helped me with a few bills and finding my love of coffee. He showed me another world. Sadly, it was short-lived because I was scared of my ex, and I didn’t want T.G. to get hurt or for me to get hurt either. I sent him away and took the loser back when he got out of jail. I was too scared. I failed at this attempt to leave him or push him out.

There would be three other attempts, with third time being a charm, to get away from him. That is how I ended up in California. He moved onto the next victim. I still feel like I failed at escaping him sometimes because he got rid of me, but it was the best thing that ever happened to me. I found myself here.

If you have ever been in this situation or are in a situation like this, get out! There are many resources to help you, and I never knew about them. There are shelters that hide you from your abuser, and there are people that will help you get free. Don’t let them abuse you like I did. You may fail the first attempt at freedom, but keep trying until you succeed.

xoxo, E.M.

Waking Up: Life with E.M.

From the time I wake up, I struggle with even wanting to get out of bed. The problem is that I really want my first cigarette of the day, but my body wants to stay in bed to avoid what is waiting outside. I do it though. I rise up and throw my comfortable covers to the side and allow myself to take the steps needed to go smoke. Then I play a few games on my phone, and then I write down all of my feelings from the time I wake up.

I have a legal pad that I doodle my thoughts upon. I never really read them until I feel like I can do something with them though. I use them when I need to heal and express. This week I have wrote more on paper than I have written on my blog, but sometimes I feel like, “Who wants to read sadness all of the time?” There is so much sadness and feeling pity for my situation.

Mental illness is terrible. I think I would much rather have the flu because you can recover from it. I wonder sometimes if I will ever find my version of happy or feel free of my own insecurities and inner suffering. The thoughts inside of my head are crucial, and they really mess me up. I am a human sponge when it comes to people around me, and I feel everything. I try to ground myself to not feel their energy, but when everyone is mad at you all of the time for speaking your own truth…it’s heartbreaking.

I wish I could just shut of my empath skills, like for real. I am sick of feeling everyone’s disdain for their own lives that they project onto mine. I am tired of not being able to tell people when they upset me or disrespect me. I keep my mouth shut 9 times out of 10 because I hate confrontation and anger. I put on my smile, forget that they just hurt me, and move on with life because I am the only one around this house that is not entitled to have feelings or speak out when someone has made me feel a certain way.

I hate that I feel stuck and feel conflicted on what to do. I am tired of fighting to belong somewhere. I have struggled with that my entire life…never fitting in. I have always been different and seen the world different than other people. I think it has some aspects to do with having a few blessings of abilities, and the other part of it is that I am not an evil person. I wish I could treat people like they treat me and talk to me.

Honestly, I have to wake up and keep going because my pain gives me power, and I refuse to let them win. I refuse to let people continue to break me. It’s time to get help. It was the worst day today, so it can only go up from here… right?

xoxo, E.M.

Fandango’s Provocative Question #137 from E.M.

This week, Fandango’s Provocative Question, is asking:

Have you ever been to a clothing-optional (nude) venue, such as a beach, resort, club, party, etc? If so, what did you think of the experience? Would you do it again? If not, would you ever consider going to a clothing-optional gathering? Why or why not?

My Answer:

I have never been to a venue where clothing is optional, but I do not know that I would ever feel comfortable going to such a venue due to my own viewpoints about myself. My self-esteem is not strong enough to strut across a beach or sit at a table naked and feel normal. I would find myself worrying about everyone else judging me because that is how my life has been my entire life. “You need a diet” or “Putting on a few extra pounds there, eh?” Those are the normal things I grew up with. My dad was very body conscious and never was out of shape. When I started putting on pounds, he began being critical of me. I still feel the effects.

Sideways Conundrums – Day 3 and 4

So…back in 2017, I moved here. I did not really want to upend my life and live on someone else’s terms. I owned my land and my house. Here I would be living under the roof with the same woman that nailed me down to the floor and beat me in the back until I could not walk well before I was even in my teens. The deciding factor was that she told me I would be safe here, so I trusted her. People change right? Pfft. That’s complete bullshit…sometimes the change is for the worse.

The psychoticism I’ve encountered since moving here has been nonstop since May of 2018, but I was and still am in no position to stand up for myself. I started therapy to try to get me through all of the changes happening in my life. I tried to stay to myself. I kept my mouth shut and my eyes open. Until the day I could no longer be someone’s speedbag that they just punching over and over and over again, in the literal sense…not the physical. There was one time she got physical with her abuse during a tantrum where she was tossing lawn furniture, but it was after I threw a small, square, under a pound Kleenex box at her rear end to make her stop ruining stuff. Her tantrum trigger me and scare me.

I don’t like anger, and I hate confrontation, mostly because I am usually the one who will pop someone in the mouth first for the disrespect. I never liked being an angry person, and I got help with my anger. It’s just one of the things that go along with having a broken brain…Sidetracked again, my bad.

Long story short, I worked really hard to try to build a life for myself here and failed. Some of it was my fault, and some was the people around me and their actions. I am moving back to Arkansas…a place I never wanted to call home again because I felt like I was born to live in California. It’s scary. It’s intimidating. I’m not okay…but I’m here.

I have spent over 24 hours in manic depression, severe anxiety, and feeling of hopelessness. My head is pounding. My self-esteem is in the toilet with my pride, and I am fucking tired. I am tired of fighting to feel like a human being that is not a complete waste of time and space. It’s been a bad Day 3 and 4 to say the least.

The Rhythm of My Chaos

Yesterday’s word challenges (September 23, 2021) were effort from the Daily Spur, suggest from Fandango, another day from Ragtag, and needles from Word of the Day Challenge via Cyanny. The poetry style I will be using is another Laura Lamarca style called La’ritmo. It was pretty cool that the words are all cohesive with one another and should be easy to correlate together in creativity and in the type of day that I had. I don’t like being late, but I always show up…even if I am late *smiles*.

Today’s word challenges (September 24, 2021) will also be on this post, and they are passion from Daily Spur, lecture from #FOWC, lamp from RDP, and anemone from the Word of the Day challenge via Melanie B. Cee.

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It was supposed to be a normal, routine day
Waking, to the nothingness and quiet, I pray
Sometimes to no avail, but I always plead out
The rhythm of my chaos wins, without a doubt

Another day would have been better than that served
More effort extended, my intentions now curved
My triggers standing on end, seeking to obtain clout
The rhythm of my chaos wins, without a doubt

Surrounded by feelings, tears suggest I may care
The environment around me steals all the air
Thick and suffocating, the toxicity stout
The rhythm of my chaos wins, without a doubt

The way that they hate me is needless and obtuse
My mouth zipped shut without speaking, no more abuse
My unwanted voice silences to stop debate
The toxicity wins, my feelings desiccate

The needing to end my suffering and torment
Never-ending pain, like soft skin pounding cement
These emotions are raw and hard to navigate
The deep toxicity wins, the soul to desiccate

The normal girl full of passion and much desire
Saves her soul from this world, filled with that of hellfire
The lantern of my eyes fade and soul chips like slate
The deep toxicity wins, the soul to desiccate

Like an anemone, stinging me by the touch
This is all weighing too heavy on me, too much
Twisting and turning, there has to be a new route
The rhythm of my chaos wins, without a doubt

Normal sounds blissful like a fairy tale ending
Can you not realize the thoughts my head are upending
Another lecture, uninvited, I can never take that bait
The deep toxicity wins, the soul to desiccate

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xoxo, E.M.

A Work in Progress – Days 2 & 3

Day 2 –

I woke up at a time that is considered late for me, 9:13 a.m. PST. Normally, I am up before 8. I did the normal routine of dreading dropping my feet on the ground, but my dogs were nagging to go outside since I slept so late. They’ll sneeze and make the bed move, sort of to say, “Hey…get ya ass out of bed woman!” I did…grabbed some of my iced coffee out of the fridge, and made our way out the patio doors.

I had not been up long and my phone rang. It was my ex’s mom, and boy, she had a lot to say. My daughter was there, and both of our jaws dangled on the ground with all of the hateful things that she had to say about her son. She had no idea that we had became friends and put past history aside…may even be working towards reconciliation…but I won’t assume to know or want to know about that. It was toxic at the end, and I have enough toxicity in my life without adding a relationship known to be toxic back to into the mix of my chaos. Anyhow…change the subject E.M.

Back to the call, I listened to this woman beat words of hate about her own son that she had carried and given birth to from her own body…absolutely triggered, shocked… I stood up for him and tried to make her see her son as something other than a “monster filled with anger”. He had a rough life, as most of us have, but life can be rougher if everyone who is supposed to love you actually hates you and despises the shoes you walk in. That was something I know better than anyone who has ever been in his life, and he would support this claim I am making.

With all that said, I contacted him immediately after hanging up the phone. Writing had to be put aside because I had to meet with him and give him a recording of the call that my daughter took after hearing the conversation’s first 30-45 seconds. He’s like a father to her. We love him. Always have and always will. He saved me from myself many times…more than I like to admit. Oh…there I go again…back to task *smh* We met up and had some dinner, passed the file, and gave some hugs…then I went about my way in the dark.

In between all the stuff going on with this son-bashing mother, if you will call her that…the toxic ones start their bull by texting about “if they can cook something to eat because their sick of fast food, sandwiches, and tv dinners”. Let’s make a note right now that this is her house, not mine and my daughter’s. I just occupy the downstairs bedroom…the blue room. All this petty nonsense is so unnecessary and more triggering happens each time…she knows this. So, triggered, night blind, and frustrated, I get us home to an alarm letting her know we are home and a door once open now closed upstairs. I try to write my challenges for the day, cannot concentrate, and spend the evening sitting outside enjoying a cool night with my daughter.

Unsuccessful day of writing to say the least, I admit. I’ll play catch-up today…

Day 3 –

Thus far, uneventful. That can change in an instant. I’m still feeling the effects of the triggers from yesterday. A conversation this morning did not help repress the trigger effects, so I am kind of all over the place. More to come…

xoxo, E.M.

How Do I See Me?

I am at it again…with my combined word challenges *giggles*

Todays words will be drop by Daily Spur, lethal by Ragtag Daily Prompt, boutique by Fandango’s One Word Challenge, and sparkling from Word of the Day via Kristian. I will be doing the Lannet poetry style today, which is a 14-line, 10 syllable count line, no-rhyming sonnet by made by Laura Lamarca. As always, be sure to go to these pages and show some love while challenging yourself to be creative!

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On days like these, opinions vary, strife
As much as I wish to see sparkling, happy, free
The mirror, at times, is my nemesis
My self-esteem towards my view is lethal
Like time is rushing fast, I see wrinkles
Curved around my lip like an hourglass
My teeth gone like yesterday’s terrible news

My body screams when I struggle into tight-fit jeans
My favorite ones from my favorite boutique, sighing strongly
I feel my head drop down in shame, affliction
Who was this girl who had gotten so round?
I choke, I cry, I fall to my knees, defeat
My power and esteem stuck in the past
How I miss the days of being blissful….

#Ragtag Daily Prompt

It’s been a while…

There have been many things that have happened in my life since my last post. This will be a long post and a daunting read, but I needed to share it somewhere to start my healing process. It’s an everyday struggle to feel normal when you are not the textbook version of normal. There has been so much happen, good and bad, in my life that I need to share and express…ramble.

In November of 2020, I lost the love of my life due to some really crazy circumstances that happen in the toxic house that I live in, but we will touch on that later with some ramblings and expressions. However, not everything has been bad since you last heard from me. Losing him from my life for a while, did have some really negative consequences for my mental health though. The grass is not always greener on the other side…real talk.

Lets see…on December 13, 2020, I was blessed with my first grandbaby…a little girl that stole my heart. In May of this year, I graduated from my local community college with two Associate transfer degrees, and I completed them in less than two years in Administration of Justice and Political Science. I lived and breathed college work. I had to and needed to do that for myself and to make a point to those who have never believed in me, including my own mother. While busting my arse to get all of that done, I also completed all of my general education requirements to transfer to any college within California State University…all while being active in my student community as the Public Relations Officer, Vice President, and President of the Beta Phi Lambda Chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK), where I earned a Leadership Award and a completed the Competitive Edge Program within PTK. It was something I would have never seen myself doing 10 or 15 years ago because all I had ever been was a momma and a housewife. My current goal is to get certified as a paralegal to help work with lawyers who focus on wrongful convictions and police brutality cases. My dream goal is to become a lawyer, and I still think I can make that dream come true. I have the tools to get me there, and I am working towards all of my goals, dreams or otherwise. It’s going decent, but my mental illness has made concentration a bit frustrating. All in all…I am glad that I made the move from Arkansas to California, since I do not believe I would have had these kinds of opportunities there between having an abusive ex-husband and no educational growth beyond working at a Walmart. I volunteer my time with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) in California because I know how it feels to lose everything due to an unjust and unfair system that we live in. I have found a voice in being an activist. I have met some great people in my process, and at the end of this post, they will receive their credit for adding to my growth and being positive figures in my life.

Everything here began perfect in my eyes, but this relocation to California has definitely had its ups and downs. As much as I would love to focus on all the positives, this uprooting my life to start a new one has been chaos on my mental health. A few months ago, I was diagnosed with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), which would explain my major depressive episodes and disabling anxiety. My life has never really went the way I ever wanted it to, and I always figured I was being punished for something I did in my past or a choice that I had made throughout my young life to adulthood. This process of moving to California and finding a new version of myself has become being a people pleaser to everyone around me, which is part of the illness too. I am hard to live with because of my anxious and depressive episodes, but I try to figure out why everyone finds it “okay” to abuse me in one way or shape or form. It has been that way my whole life, and I always try to figure out why I deserve it or why it keeps happening to me. I usually say, “It has to be something I am doing wrong” or “It must be my fault the reason people hurt me”. It could be the right things to say, but something inside me thinks that it’s both problems with me (my illness) and problems with them (their illnesses or behaviors). The one thing I can say for certain is that I am tired of suffering and being a victim of everyone that finds a way to have a problem with me or around me. I have had my property destroyed (car, clothes, shoes, items from my dad after he died, and so much more), been called terrible names, had someone put their hands on me (on Mother’s Day of all days), and been bullied and harassed for reasons that I may never know unless they decide to fill me in on the big secret or the behaviors I exhibit that causes them to do these things to me.

The people doing these things never apologize, and they never own their mistakes. They will wait a week or a few days and act like nothing happened and put on fake smiles and fake love. I own my mistakes! I apologize and say that I feel bad about not being able to help out due to my physical and mental problems…almost on a daily basis. On Mother’s Day, the person that pushed me did so after I threw at half empty Kleenex box at them. I did this because that person was throwing a tantrum and throwing lawn furniture after telling her that she had been the subject of most of my therapy sessions due to her being overbearing and treating me like a child. I won’t name names or throw mud in their face on the internet, but this is not the first tantrum that she had thrown. Those tantrums scare the crap out of me, and I wanted her to stop doing it. I really could have thrown furniture at her, but I chose a box that weighed less than a pound. I did not aim to hurt her at all…only stop her behavior that was triggering my anxiety. She came at me like a bull who had just been poked with a stick, and she aimed to hurt me. She pushed me and poked me in my bad arm…trying to trigger me to hit her. I held my ground and restrained myself as she was less than an inch from my face yelling, poking, and pushing me. If you know me, you know that had it been anyone else, they would have got it back tenfold, and I would not have felt bad about it. The problem was is that I need a place to live more than I need to throw some hands. The reason I tell this story is because this was the incident that I haven’t been able to come back from, and it is the incident that keeps me feeling like I am held down in restraint from being the person that I want to be. I have a hard time trying to find a way to rise above all of the abuse in my life. It haunts me and targets my empathy, sensitivity, benevolent heart, submissiveness, and, most of all, my mental woes that comes with having a mental illness.

I love too hard, care too much, and feel everything stronger than most people that I surround myself with. I’m selfless, and I give all of me with nothing left to give when I am spent on giving. I am educated, intelligent, empathetic, and self-driven to invest in servicing my community. With personal relationships, I always try to make sure that everyone is happy and content with my presence in their life, and I am the person that will give the shirt off my back or the last dollar out of my wallet if it means that it will help someone better their situation. It’s hard to ask why these are bad trait to have, but I do ask that all the time. Why is life so hard for me when I make others’ lives enhanced and allow their quality of life to be better. My quality of life is downgrading, and I really need to “catch a break” to get to a place where I can be happy and feel better.

The reason I chose to share this on my public blog is because I thought maybe one or more of you are going through the same thing or have gone through the same thing. I thought I could reach out to my community and leave my “comfort zone” to find help. Therapy helped for a while, but when things go bad for me…they really go bad, making the techniques I was taught in therapy null and void. I have been a self-injurer since the age of 10 or 11…not sure which. I started with banging my head on walls, then began punching walls, and finally I found cutting gave me emotional relief. I have not cut for over a year, but that urge to cry tears of red always haunts me and is always the first thing I want to do when my shoulders are too heavy. I thank God that I have not done it, and I am proud of myself for the fact that I have fought that urge, which if you are a cutter, you know it is not easy to not cut. The struggle to be stronger than the demons that try to control you is very real, and it is very hard to overcome. I will write more posts on how to control those urges to injure in more posts.

Now! I want to give credit where credit is due. I am so thankful for my children (Shannia, Leina, and Daniel) for giving me the strength to battle my demons. Without them, I probably would not be writing this post because they help me battle my inner demons. Along with my babies, my grandbaby, Dessa Boo, is the shining light in my eye and reminds me of all three of my children wrapped into one feisty, amazing, and beautiful little princess.

I want to take a moment and recognize some people who also keep my head above water and have enhanced my life with their friendship and counsel: (If I do manage to leave someone off of here, just know that if I have told ya…ya know where you stand with me)

Porsche – My sister from another mister…my rock…my friend…and my therapist (lets just hope she doesn’t start charging)

Travis – He’s my level-minded, level-headed voice of reason. He’s been around a very long time and has seen me go through hell and back and through hell again.

Steph – He’s a real one, and he fights battles so much stronger than you nor I could even imagine. We’ve been through so much, but he never stops fighting for me…and I will never stop fighting for him. He’s another victim of the California justice system. This man struggles every single day of his life since the early 2000s, and he still makes time to call this crazy girl to see if I am straight.

Pierre Rushing – Who is fighting for his life in prison on a wrongful conviction for murder. He needs all of our support! Links will be posted for how you can help.

(All Links will open in a new tab)

Ollie, Mama Dee, and Atone – The Rushing family that took me in as one of their own and showed me the greatest hospitality when I visit Oakland to help the cause to get Pierre free. They made me feel like I was part of their family, and I am so appreciative of their kindness and free-will to bring a stranger, like me, into their circle.

Yung Pretty – This man talked me through so much stuff and helped me in ways that he will never really know or realize. He’s always been a supportive person of my educational goals and is a great friend. Y’all better recognize that he coming up too. He’s going to live his dream, and I couldn’t be more proud to have him in my corner.

Landon – you know what you do and how you do it….thank you

Denardo – your ear is always there for me along with motivating advice, counsel, and sillyness that is the epitome of you *big smile*

Claudia and Candace – for listening to all my bullshit and always being there when I needed a friend or a shoulder to cry on.

Tiana – always has an open ear for me to talk to and has great advice. She’s a freakin’ rockstar, and she makes the most amazing shirts and whatever else you need in that department. She handmakes crystal jewelry, and she has great prices. #shopblack

I am sure there are so many more people that needs their credit where it is definitely due, but these are the ones that I can think of off-top. My brain gets a little foggy on these meds. However, if you think you should be on there, and you aren’t…there’s a good possibility that you are part of the problem *shrugs* I am not people pleasing anymore. These people deserve there clout, and they have every bit of my time, respect, and mention.

With that said, grand rising, blessed be, and there’s more to come.

Beautiful?

Sometimes I get out of bed feeling good, and I put myself together feeling beautiful, accomplished, and happy. I try to start a new day better than the last, and that’s how I have been healing myself.

Then we have the days that I cannot bear my own reflection, and the day follows the same pattern. These are the days spent with the misery of past relationships, trauma, and abuse. I could write a book of everything and everyone who have killed seeing myself as a beautiful woman. These days are hard to heal.

The worst part of being a caring and thoughtful human being with empath skills is that you break easier and harder than the rest of the population that is considered “normal”. When someone causes pain to someone like myself, the first place it strikes is at the head of insecurities and weaknesses.

For me, those insecurities and weaknesses are contained within my self-image and vanity. I have never been a vain person, but I would rather look in the mirror and see myself as beautiful no matter who threw crap in my face. Some days are better than others, but I always hear my demons roar.

Today was an ugly day. I’m ready for a pretty one.