Sounds a Lot Like You Leaving

A list of reasons I left him for the people who won’t stop asking:

My feelings are valid – he didn’t think so

You don’t put down someone’s interests

Especially if it kept them from taking the step over the ledge

Just because you don’t feel the numbing pain they way I do

Doesn’t mean it’s less real

He had me in the palm of his hand – I would’ve taken a bullet for him

Even if it were him behind the trigger

He tried to stifle a future he didn’t know if he’d ┬ábe a part of

His empty threats of suicide if I left

Hit me like a train every single time

 

Relearning the validity of my feelings was more difficult than the day I picked myself up and left

It was like rebuilding a house that collapsed on itself

His name still stings

His name feels like road rash and bloody knees every time it leaves someone’s mouth

When it runs off my tongue it feels like coffee that’s a little too hot

And I want to say I feel nothing towards him

So that he wouldn’t have a space in my heart to live

We all know how much of a lie that is

 

I fall asleep with a new boy’s hands tangled in my hair

Sometimes I think about the way your hands run through her hair

Fingers wandering p and down her skin

And it feels like daggers

Because I know you erased me

You’d rather pretend I don’t exist

 

I guess I would too

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Mental Health Education

Things I would tell my 13 year old self if I got the chance:

That emptiness you feel is not normal

You know how you feel submerged in the Atlantic mid-winter? That numbness?

It’s called depression

It’s going to get worse before it gets better

One day you’re going to know the details of your own death

You’re suicidal but you don’t know there is even a word for it

You don’t know

You think this drowning is normal

Five years later and you’re still tearing yourself open

I’m sorry

I’m so sorry

There are so many scars

That won’t pack their bags and leave

But you’re still alive

You’re going to make it

Cooking for Two

Your name is a book collecting dust on my shelf

That I haven’t read for years

Because I already know the ending too well

I started smoking again to get the taste of your lips

Out of my memory

As if every exhale takes a fragment of you out of my soul

Kissing people doesn’t make me forget the way your lips felt on mine

It just makes me remember how ours fit perfectly

I chase down vodka with Coke

I have this delusion that if I get drunk enough to forget my own name

Maybe I’ll forget you too

But after a few shots my chest gets all fuzzy

Just like the first time I kissed you

I guess sometimes true love comes at the wrong time

Your fingerprints are still tattooed across my body

No matter how many people I let crawl into my bed

You’re still living in my heart

I still see your smile everywhere

I hear your voice beckoning to return to your warm embrace

As if I’m not trying

But your arms aren’t open yet

I’m ripping each word you breathed into my neck

Out of my skin

You no longer live here

So why do I keep setting a place for you at the table

And cooking for two

Moody is I

It’s 95 degrees Fahrenheit

Clear skies, sunny as all can be

Yet I’m using an umbrella because I fear I’ll be struck by lightning and that’s the only thing that can protect me from being abducted by aliens

Mood instability is a rollercoaster with no exit

So, ladies and gentlemen, keep all your limbs inside the car

 

The only people who can tell when I crash are my parents

Who sat through plenty of therapy sessions

Of me describing what it’s like to scratch off your skin because you feel bugs underneath

Every time my father sees the light in my eyes switch off

His heart breaks a little

 

People like Vincent van Gogh, Sylvia Plath, and Paul Gauguin

All suffered from the plight of their own minds

They were all loved by someone

My father watches over me

Because he has seen the destruction

From his own father to his daughter

He has seen the storm of sadness tear the walls from my foundation

Just like van Gogh had his brother Theo watching over

 

Hopelessness and desperation come crashing over me as powerful as riptides

There are days happiness reigns over

Sometimes you have to dig the sunshine out of your bones

Sometimes you have to push yourself off that bed

Just to see the light of day