I can’t remember the last time I was enough.
Way back when, there were days when I walked through the world… full. Not like these days where every waking moment is filled with worries about what I should be doing?
I should work out.
I should do something with my face like the other women my age.
I should wear different clothes.
I should write.
I should develop routines that get me out of staring at the ceiling building monuments of all the things I’m not.
These aren’t [all] bad suggestions. I’m 36 years-old and drink too much wine. I should burn it off. The clothes I put on should make me feel ready for the world. I should face my thoughts on the page so they don’t choke me from the inside out. I should take a “just do it” approach to getting the fuck out of my head.
The suggestions aren’t the issue. The issue is I’m grasping outside of myself for a thing I know comes from within. I am a flame. I radiate. I don’t grasp.
“You know what I love about you?” a friend once said over drinks and dinner. “Beyonce didn’t have to tell you to get in ‘Formation,’ you stay in ‘Formation.'”
That was me once upon a time.
Sassy. Independent. Bold. Defiant. Raw. The shining sun in my personal solar system. I played by my own rules and refused any “opportunity” that required me to compromise my identity. I loved that me. She fit so well. Made me feel alive.
Then, she flew the coup and left me with this shell. This anxious, self-doubting, smallll, pitiful bitch who skulks around the corners of her own life asking for permission to be.
Old me wasn’t perfect. She was self-obsessed, self-righteous, a touch delusional.
Yet I feel her absence so acutely. The hollowness in the middle of my being where a spirit used to live. It’s so empty I don’t know how I fucking breathe some days.
It’s easier to adapt to the world crashing when all I want to do is hide. Fewer opportunities to blow my cover. The snark, the smiles, the storytelling… All stage instructions followed by a timid understudy in itchy costumes that don’t fit.