I’ve lived my life as a stranger to myself.
I woke up as me,
but what did that mean?
I went through the motions,
raised my hand when my name was called,
but when I got home,
I didn’t know who I really was.
You’re beautiful, talented, and smart – I was told;
but when I got home, I just felt alone and cold.
Cold, so I hurried into my bed
to hide from the world,
but mainly to hide from myself.
Sleep was my vice;
sleeping meant I didn’t have to think about my life.
Day after day, I hid from myself.
No happiness shone through my tired eyes.
I was miserable at best.
Imagine an old oak tree whose roots have found their way to the surface, creating a series of very intricate knots that surround the beauty they keep grounded. This tree sits alone in a park that no one seems to visit anymore. Her anxieties and depressed states are the roots in which keep her grounded. Outside, she has hair as bright as the sun, and eyes so deep that it is hard to make yourself look away; the passion she possesses flows from her to you. Everything about her is electric. Like that old tree, she radiates beauty that captivates every soul that crosses her path. Unlike the tree, you can not see the things in which hold her down-those terrible things are hidden away beneath the breathtaking body that she calls home. Throughout her life, those roots of hers keep growing, but in the end, only making her stronger. One day she stumbles across that old tree and can not help but to smile.
The sun was shining, so she closed her blinds as she swept her bangs from over her eyes; the brightness and glow was too much for her damaged soul to bear. An old and tattered floral chair, like the ones you see abandoned beside dumpsters, called itself home in the dimly lit corner of her room; she saw much beauty and history in things others only wanted out of their way. She also possessed a beauty that was often overlooked. By the chair sat a small table passed down from generations of people she would never know; old, dirty, and abused, the table beautifully held a caramel latte and an antique sea-foam green book. She adored things that others didn’t. In her over-sized sweater, her nervous hands picked at the threads as she imagined the outside world. Bright and happy, she thought, they just won’t understand; as always, she smiled shyly to herself, swept her silky hair behind her ear, and made that old chair home. Quietly sipping her coffee and taking in the dusty smell of her favorite book, she knew that things aren’t so bad after all.
“Smile. You’re so much prettier when you smile.” Her hair as dark as the devil’s soul and her sad, blue, eyes as bright and watery as a shallow lagoon. She was always rather content in her misery, seeing as it’s all she has ever known. “Why do you always look so sad?” they would ask. She didn’t know. A pure smile or a spontaneous laugh felt like sunshine to her soul, but most days, the weather was dreary. She looked forward to a beautiful sunrise, but was comforted by the sound of rain pecking on the window. Happiness always felt too expensive a thing to have; the lucky, usually thoughtless, ones were rich enough for such a pleasure, but not her. She wasn’t poor by any means, just rich in unconventional ways; her complex mind experienced this cruel world much deeper than most would consider normal. Everything means something, always. A glance over one’s shoulder, a deep sigh in a quiet room, reading a magazine backwards, or even a prolonged smile to another-means something, so very intimate and important, to everyone around. Simply put, life is all that we do intertwined into a single essence. Her mind was a whirlwind of thoughts and emotions as her eyes began to close. “Blue..” she thought, “Why is it so bad to be blue? Such a vast and beautiful color seems like an extravagant thing to be.”
A small step in the right direction is still a step in the right direction. I have to keep reminding myself of that, every day. I am enough. I don’t owe anyone anything. The only opinion that matters is my own. Loving myself is more than enough. Sleeping alone isn’t so bad. Always look at things from different perspectives. A day without talking is okay. Not knowing every single detail is perfectly acceptable. It’s okay to trust. It’s okay not to trust. Never apologize for sharing your feelings, even if they are irrational. Always be honest. Don’t apologize for being who you are; instead, learn to love who you are. Have control over your thoughts. Be playful. Accept that some people won’t like you. Worrying is normal. Accept that you won’t like some people. Your feelings are valid. If you care for someone, let them know. If you aren’t happy, then make yourself happy. Be open minded. Do things that make you happy on a daily basis. Saying no is okay; saying no without an explanation is okay. Know what your morals are, and don’t break them. Have hope. Never allow yourself to put in all the effort with nothing in return. Don’t be judgmental. Practice being compassionate. Expectations lead to disappointments; life is short and unpredictable, so avoid being disappointed. Be nice to people. Give yourself compliments. Know that nothing is concrete. If you are hurt, no one else can tell you that you aren’t. Find some sort of beauty in every one and every thing. Look to the past for advice. Say please and thank you. Mental illnesses aren’t anything to be ashamed of. Learn to listen to others and understand their feelings. Know that it’s okay to be depressed sometimes, as long as you pick yourself back up. Things can, and often do, change. Learn to communicate your feelings in a healthy way. Be faithful to yourself. Realize that everything isn’t as it seems. Don’t regret anything. Sometimes things fall apart, and that’s okay; pick yourself back up and try again. Know what triggers your anxiety. Treat life as if it is a magnificent journey. Know that arguments aren’t the end of the world. Sometimes, being selfish is necessary. Stop being so reliant on social media and text messaging. Know when to let go; know when to hold on. If you’re lonely, talk to God. Instagram likes shouldn’t give you a sense of self worth. Avoid going to sleep angry. Occasionally being lazy is alright. Have fun without spending money. Keep a journal throughout your lifetime. Use your talents. Yell when it’s necessary. Be charitable. Don’t put yourself down. Learn to truly laugh and find yourself being caught in a moment where you are overcome with happiness. Crying does not make you weak. Be selfless when you can. Don’t hold grudges. Smile. Have faith in something bigger than yourself. Don’t bottle up your emotions. Be environmentally friendly. Set goals for yourself that are attainable. Mental health is just as important as physical health. Only surround yourself with people who appreciate who you truly are and uplift you. Dress up for yourself. Be considerate. Enjoy nature. Create intimate and special relationships with as many people as you can. Talk to strangers; smile at strangers. Making someone else happy will make you happy in return. Most importantly, always be yourself. Spend each day learning who you are.
I once told a friend years ago that if there are two pieces of pizza left, I’ll take the smaller one. She said, “Misty, no one is going to get mad at you for taking the damn larger piece of pizza.” It’s okay to take the larger slice of pizza.
Like a flower, she opens up in the spring
The sun and warmth sparking a fire in her soul
She blooms – a lifeless being becoming new again
Mother nature has a special touch
Inspiration feeds the fire in her soul
Her soul continues to bloom
She sees herself in nature
She feels herself in the wind
She hears her thoughts all around her
This is the closest to God she has ever been