Today I am struggling. I was struggling yesterday, but today, today is different. Yesterday the messages just kept falling out of sky and hitting hard. Ones I needed to hear but really didn’t want to listen to.
It’s hard sometimes to hear over the noise. It is like 50 voices in the same room all trying to be heard over the one next to them. Each one saying something important but you can’t hear them clearly because they have been drowned out by the one next to them. I’m afraid to call them out, I’m afraid to let any of the voices become clearer. Because once that happens that means I can no longer continue to ignore them all. Having all of them muffled and barely audible for some reason gives me comfort. I can continue to say I can’t hear you, it’s too loud. But I’m afraid to say step closer and speak more clear so that I may be able to understand and hear you. Because, that, that would mean that I have to deal with my own shit.
I have a hard time dealing with my shit, my life has been a series of boxes and back shelves for so long that I’m not quite sure where and how to unpack the bullshit. I need to be free of the baggage. I need it like I need to breathe… But… and there is my problem. But… I am afraid of what it will say about me, I am afraid of what I will see when I pull the box off the shelve and start to unpack. I’ve created stories upon stories of who I am and what I am and what my life is supposed to be and what it is to look like. And dammit, I need it like I need to breathe…
A box haphazardly fell off the shelf yesterday, I mean it was like someone was there and was like oh this box looks like fun lets toss it on the floor and see what she does with it. If I remember correctly, I nearly passed out while driving. And then my breathing became uncontrollable and I wasn’t sure if I would be able to pull over quick enough. My spirit must have realized I was on the brink of an anxiety attack because in that moment I received a text that simply said… breathe
In those 10 seconds that it took for that box to fall and all of its contents to fall out, life as I knew it changed. It instantly took another turn and I wasn’t sure how to handle the quick turn of events. Most times I am very adaptable, but this… this was different. I could no longer hide behind the veil I put up for myself. My shit was strewn all over the floor and all I could do was breathe and look at it. Normally I would scramble and try to pick it all back up and put it back in the box before damage had been done. But this time, there wasn’t anything I could do but look at it and wonder how I would survive it. I wasn’t quick enough and to be honest I didn’t want to be quick enough. I wanted to deal with it, I needed to deal with it like I needed to breathe…
I needed to be able to tell myself that it was ok. I needed to be able to say I did what was in the best interest of myself. That I did what was in the best interest of our family at the time. I needed to hear myself say I am not a horrible person and that I do have feelings and that I don’t need to be ashamed or guilty of any decision I have made in my life. Each decision has propelled me to where I am today.
I am a woman and I made a choice that was best for me and my body. I am a woman that had two others to think of. I am a woman and all I could think of at the time was I don’t have to do what a man says because he tells me to. I am a woman and I control me. I am a woman and I was sexually abused as a child. I am a woman now and I was sexually abused as a teen. I am a woman and I have realized that’s my past, it shouldn’t dictate my present or my future. But it has for so many years. Some years I was unaware of the hold being a woman had on me, I didn’t realize the hold my abusers had on me. And today I am saying I am a woman. I am a woman as much as I am Iiona. And what I realized was that some days I wished that I could have separated being a woman from being Iiona.
I wished so hard on so many levels I did things. I needed to feel the full extent of being in control of me. I needed to understand what being me was and what being a woman felt like. I knew a woman could control things, but I didn’t see the magnitude of that until I was rejected. And in that moment, I realized I was but a tiny human who felt alone and by herself in this world and I was using being a woman as a means to feel needed and wanted. I needed to feel wanted as much, if not more then I needed to breathe…
Yesterday I learned to breathe. Today I am learning to continue breathing even when it hurts. I have no idea what tomorrow will look like, but thats ok. Because today I am Iiona, I am a woman, and I am needed and wanted.
Today, that is a step.