I feel like, I'm always doing this reintroduction - because, the times in between my writing have been so sporadic. Nonetheless, I'm back. I've stepped away from writing for a while, because well - new mom life and then, mostly because I'm honestly tired of my words, my art being weaponized against me. I can't tell you how many times, someone has used my own words to try and harm me. It's disgusting and I'm over it.
Being vulnerable has N E V E R come easy to me and I mean N E V E R. Almost every time, I've chosen to open up and be vulnerable with someone - the wrong someone. They've used it against me, if it's former friends gaslighting me, my ex husband making jokes about mental health - acting as if I'm crazy. Fake friends twisting things I've said and lying for the approval of others and so on and so on.
As far back as I can remember at least. To be fair, we'll say January 2001. I think that was a pretty big focal point for when things started to change for me. My foundation was shaken, when I lost my grandfather and to be completely honest, I don't think I ever bounced back. (I know, I know 19 years - let's not put a time limit on grieving).
For most of my life, well most of my dating life and especially after being divorced at such a young age. I vowed to never march to the beat of a man’s drum again, anyone's drum but my own. I vowed to not get caught up in a man’s world, anyone's world - so much that I forgot about my own. I stayed up late nights, making these promises with my best friend. And yet, the enabling part of me resurfaced and I found myself right back to my usual pattern of being “Jessica, the enabler, the fixer." Many of you know (and probably more of you don't if you're not following and because, it's not something I discuss often) my husband has a child, from a previous marriage. - See, Married With Children That Aren't Yours As, I watched my husband pleading for a relationship with his son. I would watch him go from this happy go-lucky guy, to furious, to broken to defeated in a matter of minutes during a conversation with his son's mother. It would break my heart. I wanted to help. I wanted to fix this for not only him, but for his son - who deserved to have two parent's who could effectively communicate. So, after being harassed on Instagram/Facebook - the Empath in me, the enabler, the fixer against the advice of those who were more aware of the person they were dealing with - I decided hey, let me be the bigger person and extend an olive branch. Boy, was I wrong. I should've NEVER opened that door, it is one of my biggest regrets in life (and I was married at 19 and joined the Navy). You ever wish you never met someone or that you had a time machine, to go back and continue to act as if someone didn't exist? Because, I have mastered the art of ignoring. Some people, just aren't worth your energy. They don't have peace and so, they don't want anyone else to either.
It wasn’t until after much self reflection and a multitude of pro/con lists, I realized I was enabling the broken child in myself through all these other people, I wanted to fix. I was subconsciously trying to fix them in hopes of fixing myself. All the times, I'd wished someone were there to help me out, to be a shoulder for me to cry on, to be the voice to speak up for me. - It was me, it was always me. Granted, I do want to help others, sometime's to a fault but, I felt so strongly about it because, it was about me.
How many of you have realized you are subconsciously trying to heal yourself in helping others?
Poison (n) -
We too often surround ourselves with poison. We allow toxic and poisonous people to inhabit our space. We fill our minds with poisonous thoughts, we indulge in poisonous behavior and we look at it as normal. We often try to decipher why our spirits aren't filled with the positive energy we are looking for and why depression and anxiety seem to consume us; but we never look at the toxicity we allow into our lives.
Toxic and volatile relationships, toxic jobs, toxic atmosphere's, it's almost impossible to breathe any sense of relief when we are engulfed in these ever so suffocating habits. So, you ask how do you move forward? How do you let go of that toxic relationship that you're so used to because you're afraid of branching out, or maybe you're comfortable, or maybe you enjoy toxicity. How do you quit that job that doesn't pay you what you deserve and also makes you wish you could just catch the flu for a week so you didn't have to go in. How do you tell your friends their problems are draining you and if their boyfriend keeps cheating on them to just leave? You just do. You have to find time for yourself, time to breathe, time to acknowledge this toxicity. Sometimes, we are so used to toxicity consuming us, we don't even realize why we're suffocating.
It's is 16 days into New Year. Normally, when the new year rolls in - I take a look at all the things, I don't want to bring in with me before the end of the year and I make a decision. This year, was different. I had already let go of so many toxic behaviors, friendships and loved ones that the only thing left to look at was myself. I'd dropped everything that was causing me to feel smothered that the only thing left was myself. I'd let go of jealous friends. I'd let go of behaviors that would bring poison into my heart. I'd let go of loved ones who were draining me but never replenishing. I can't tell you how freeing that is. For the first time in a long time, I started to just deal with and worry about myself. Although, I still dabble a bit in situations - I've learned the art of disengaging and that's freeing. Letting go of all the poison in your life and allowing yourself to heal, is one of the greatest things I could have done for me. What are you holding onto? What toxicity in your life is weighing you down?
Friendship is a funny thing, it's something we're taught all our lives subconsciously. Learn to share, learn to love, learn to make friends. We're taught to build relationships with others, this is supposed to make us more empathetic, more successful, more loving, more sociable. The more friends you have, the happier you are. I've learned otherwise. The less you have, the happier you are or should I say, the less negative people you surround yourself with the happier you are .
I wrote this poem a few years ago, after realizing friendships do not always mean the same to everyone.
Lately, I’ve not had much to say;
My words have been few and far between
And everyone is looking for inspiration from me, like a beak of sunlight on a rainy day.
Only to be disappointed with a lack of what I have to say.
I’ve said everything my loves,
My pencil led is running out.
And all of the people I used to run to are now just running mouths
Spreading lies, sprinkled with truths, showing the world every inch of their youth
attempting to smear character.
Allowing whatever four letter verb they felt for me, to be dictated by the fact that I’m not there enough.
And I make no apologies for the distance I’ve placed between myself and you…
Because, whether you’d like to admit it or not, you’ve placed a distance there too
I guess, as of lately my words haven’t been meaning that much.
I’ve been putting so much action behind them
I’m feeling out of touch
I write sentence on sentence, of things I’ve already accomplished
Sharing less and less information with my “so-called” accomplice
See, I’ve worked it out in my head that, I don’t really need that many people
And I find myself going back and reminiscing on when I was little
Like, I didn’t have much of anybody
but my pencil and paper
So, why am I so intent on adding to my foundation when all along I’ve had the staple?I've always wanted to be some type of inspiration for others; an inspiration I was searching for on days when it was hard to get out of bed. I've lost so many people to losing themselves, or better yet maybe finding who they truly were. I wouldn't change a thing. I've been spending more time doing the things that make me happy and less of what doesn't involve my happiness. I've been searching for an answer or some type of support from my peers and realized that is not where I will find it. Sometimes, the most support you are going to get will come from people you have never met and that is okay. So, what does a friendship consist of? Supporting those who support you or just finding friends to share a good story over a bottle of wine with? There has to be more than that to a friendship, I'm sure of it. Are your friend's the people who encourage you to get out of bed when you want to stay there or are your friend's the people who come over and make sure you get out of it? I like to consider myself an amazing friend. I'm sure some people may disagree, but we're all adults. So, what is the making of a good friend? I may not know surely how to spot it in others, but I know how to spot it in myself and how to remain true to that. What do you consider a true friend?