Back when I was part of a recovery program I used to tell my story periodically, and my guiding principle every time I stood behind a podium or sat at the head of a table was always the same: just speak from the heart. I would say a little prayer right before the meeting was turned over to me. I would clasp my inevitably shaking hands together where no one could see them and internally mutter something like, “God, please give me the courage I need to speak from my heart. Give me the strength to be open and real. And help me to trust that whatever comes out of my mouth will be exactly what needs to. Guide me.”
I enjoy thinking of myself as a good writer. To that end, I edit everything I write relentlessly. It can easily take me over an hour to compose a personal email, and that’s only if it ends up being two paragraphs or less.
I haven’t allowed myself that here. I’m not saying that I haven’t been making use of the delete button, but for the most part, it’s just been at the start. By the time I arrive at these posts, I’ve spun so many thoughts through my head that I’m lost as to where to begin. I start and stop and start and stop again. Eventually I’ll breathe and I’ll remember to just speak from my heart. To just start with what feels most true and alive for me right here, right now in this very moment. And it just goes from there. I haven’t even been rereading these posts before hitting the publish button.
I don’t want this to be about writing. I want this to be about having the courage to say whatever is inside me that I need to say. I want it to be about claiming space for my version of things. I want, ultimately, for it to be about my heart.
I felt like I was dying. Before I started this site a week ago, I was so painfully aware that with each passing day I was taking another step toward death. My life had no life. I’m not sure that it does now, but at least I have this. At least I have what might be a start.
I told my therapist today that I am desperate for someone to come and save me. The face of the person who comes flickers in my fantasies between my mom, an unmet lover, a friend, or a magical being. Just like I knew yesterday that as desperate as I was to escape, there was no where to go, I know today that no one is coming. I can’t be saved from this. And no one is coming.
I think my heart just broke. I wonder if that’s what the feeling has been that stops me gasping for breath in the middle of a sidewalk. Maybe my heart breaks every time I brush up against this truth that I still refuse to stand before and acknowledge to be real. Gasp. And my heart breaks.