when i was curled on a hard chair in the mental hospital, the TV blaring, trying block out some sort of tiff between the other patients last august, i thought my life had plummeted to the bottom of the bottom. it was the first day of school and any time i pictured someone else putting backpacks on my children’s shoulders, i cried tears that i wiped away with the cuffs of my sweatshirt. it was some sweet agony to be away from my family. to be in a building full of strangers. to have all my movements restricted. to not feel exactly safe, even though i knew i was some sort of safe.
i would have given anything to have my own pillow.
and, i hate and apologize for ambiguity, but now here i am even lower. it’s amazing how the heart expands as easily for anguish as it does for love. that it can accommodate pain the size of texas, with room, i expect, for more. i feel like i am crawling up a mountain, treeless and covered in cactus for cinematic effect. the sun blazes. the spines poke my knees. but i know that if i stop crawling what little i have will be taken away from me.
as i crawl, i slowly learn that being hurt does not make you immune from being hurt again — it doesn’t give you a divine pass, one year off from stuff that sucks. instead, trials can come thick and mighty, piling on top of you until it’s hard to breathe.
and what do you do when you suddenly discover that instead of being the princess, you are actually the pea?