We are NOT alone.


Of all the lessons I’ve learned, this Extreme Year.
The most eye-opening has been this:

We are NOT alone.

And let me tell you why.

Until this year.
This Extreme Year.
I had, probably assumed, without much backing or assertion from friends.
That I was crazy.

That the thinks that rambled through my brain at a constant clip were nuts.
And saying them out loud to ANYONE,
CONFIRMED it.

I had another, very different blog when I was in College.
And I wrote very different things.
When I was in college.

But.
There was a day.
When I counted. 
In a Communication 342 lined notebook.
The number of times, I thought about how I didn’t fit in. 
Didn’t belong in my skin.
With my friends.
In this class.
At this job.

One day.
How many times didn’t I fit in?

And the answer.
As I stare at that worn notebook now.
Ninety-Three.

Must have been a slow day.
Because it feels like it was a lot more.
And there are days when I feel like it’s times ten.

Ninety Three times in one day.
I felt like I didn’t belong.
And in tandem, I also felt like the world might be a better place without me in it.

And I sit here.
Waiting to go into therapy.
Ha.
And I think.
What a lonely sad place that was.
That I lived in.

And not just because I felt like I didn’t belong or fit in.
More so because I spent the majority of my time making other people think I did.
I had…have?  A strong personality.
I think I had. :)
Now, it’s more of me just shining my light.

Back then it was more - can I convince you with EVERYTHING I’m not, that I belong here.

This I believed would make YOU happy and paint a picture of someone I wanted so desperately to be.

Happy, yes.
But more than that.
I wanted to FEEL what it felt like to fit in.
To be a part of something.

Irony – as a staple of my life was that in the picture of fitting in.
I did.
I was House Council president.
A University Tour Guide.
A Student Admissions Representative.
A Residence Advisor for the Boston Ballet’s Summer Dance Program.
In good standing as a student.
Loving being a Communication Major.
I worked Free Lance for Bunim and Murray Productions casting for the Real World and Road Rules.
I was dating.

And in love.
I had friends.
And crazy roommates.
My co-ed softball team tanked, but we had a lot of fun.

Need me to draw more of the picture for you?
I belonged in a lot of places.
And yet.
The skin I was living in.

Didn’t fit.
And not just the fat skin.
That’s not that point.
The actual body.
I was in. 
Felt.
Hot.
And Sticky.
And not me.
And when you looked at me.
It wasn’t really me.
Because I didn’t like me.
Enough to be who I really knew me to be.

I would go so far as to say.
I hated me.
And I’m grateful that I can write that in the past tense.
And mean it.

I hated the skin I was in.
I remember one of the dates I went on.
Back before I started dating my OTL.
And I thought.
Throughout the entire date.
“If we dated, he would figure out how awful I was.  
And how much better he could do.  
Someone prettier, funnier, thinner, better.”

And so as the longest and best first date ever came to a close – I said, 
“I don’t really like you, like that, like you, I just like you like a friend like you.”

Yeah.
I know.
IN REAL LIFE.
How mean is that?
Especially since it wasn’t true.
That sentence is forever burned in my brain.
And I’m sure.
Totally forgotten in his.
I just knew he’d figure it out.
How ugly I was.
How much better he could do.
And I didn’t want him to.
So I made up the worst friend line ever.

If I were to ever see him again in real life.
I’d apologize.
For hating the skin I was in so much.
That I lied.
Though, I’m pretty sure he grew up into one of my many gaysbands, so we could still be friends.

I digress.
The point of this post.
Is that that self hatred place.
Was LONELY.
And crazy making.

Metaphorically.
It was the beginning of Peter Pan.
When Peter is desperately trying to put his shadow back on with soap.
And it won’t stick.
And it’s totally his shadow.
Part of him.
And it won’t connect.

That’s the self hatred I know.
The part of me that hates everything I am.
Brown.
And big.
And crazy hair.
And oily skin.
And man hands.
And big thighs.
And flabby arms.

And that’s also the lonely loner part.
The piece that doesn’t fit.

Until.
This past year.
When I realized.
I wasn’t alone.
And there were plenty of people who pretended right along side of me.
That things were fine.
And everything was wonderful.
As their lives slowly fell apart.
Or unraveled.
Or they revealed the truth.
That not everything was perfect.

I am ever so humbled by this awareness of self and others.
That I am not alone.
In my crazy thinks.
And in my sane ones.
That YOU are there too.
Sometimes in the crazy.
And sometimes in the sane.

Sometimes in the crazier thoughts.
That make me rethink mine.

And I cherish each of you for stepping forward.
Out of the darkness of self loathing.
And into the community that has formed.

Together.
We can figure out how to reattach our shadows.
And fly.


10 comments:

  1. Such a transformation, physically, mentally, and spiritually. You are an amazing young woman, and I'm glad to know you. DeniseMB

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for reading and your kind words.
      You rock!

      Delete
  2. Jami, you are beautiful. The first time I met you at the Rock School dorm...I thought you were so bubbly and beautiful then. Congratulations. Keep smiling. It's contagious.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for the kind words.
      My rock family.
      Is the absolutely B.E.S.T.
      Ridiculously Long Hugs to you! :)

      Delete
  3. We matters indeed..love this post

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  4. I just adore this post... I can relate so much with it. I feel now that I have lost weight that it is hard for me to remember who i was when i was fat...because I didn't really know who I was at that point... just surviving. Trying to hide and remain unseen. Or trying to overcompensate my personaility so people wouldn't judge my body. So thanks for being open so others can be open :) -J

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks for the kind words.
      Thanks for relating.
      Thanks for writing.
      YOU ROCK!

      Delete
  5. Replies
    1. Thank YOU.
      For writing such kind words.
      Thanks for reading!

      Delete