People have always told me that I have a knack for listening to people. I sit there while they tell me their issues or what they are feeling in that moment. I listen to them because I want them to know that they have a person who is willing to sit down, shut up, and simply listen to what they need to say. I’m told how much I care about people and how deeply I care about people. I have heard people refer to how strong I am to be able to get through all that I have been through.
I question these people. I question their thoughts, their opinions, and their view of me. How can I be strong or caring when I’m depressed, Anxious, and feel weak? How can I care for people when I feel as though I am taking advantage of them? Yes, I have been hurt. Yes, I have learned to be strong. Yes, I care for people deeply. Or at least I try to.
How can I be strong when I have been trampled on? How can I care for people when I feel abandoned? How can I care for anything or anyone when I can’t even get off the couch most days.
I have heard people say that I have to much in me to just “mope” around all day. That I have to much in me to be scared of talking to people on the phone. That I have to much potential to waste it all.
You see, my mother sees me as a failure because I have no job, and am living on my older sisters couch. But, has she seen the pain that she has caused me? The hurt? The withdraw I have from life? To her, I am a burden. She moved. Moved in with my high school therapist that she insisted I needed to see because of her divorce. She left me, without a home to come back to. She left.
My father should be more understanding. He has depression, anxiety, and mood disorders. He should by sympathetic right? Wrong, he left when I was fifteen. He became angry, violent, and manipulative. The bruising, the fear, the lying to my peers, a restraining order. I wanted out.
I wanted to be able to run freely and never look back. To run where no one knew me as so and so’s younger sister. To be known as one person, me.
I didn’t run away, I went to college instead. A christian college as per my mothers wishes. A Christian college that taught me that being part of the LGBTQ community meant that you were alienated from the rest of campus. That my friends, some who I have known for years, would look down upon me. A college that tried to make things “better” for “those people” while still trying to live up to their denominational standards.
Now, I am here, flailing about like a baby bird falling from its nest. I am hurt, broken, and cursed with pain that I wish I could just will to go away. I am still here! Even if a part of me is wasting away. I am still here. Listening, watching, caring.