Thursday, November 15, 2007

Blog Share In Action

Today's post is brought to you by an anonymous person who is participating in the blog share. I hope you enjoy this post and check out the other participating bloggers.


I sometimes worry that I am too damaged. I go down my list of “Things that have f*%#ed me up,” and I think that I must be inventing it. The emotionally abusive mom, the cheating ex-boyfriend, the two men who’ve physically hurt me… this stuff doesn’t happen to normal people. This stuff certainly doesn’t all happen to one person. Sometimes I think that I’m crazy, that I’ve imagined my damage. I tell myself that the eating disorder is self-inflicted, a way to add drama to my life. I chastise myself, accusing my brain of remaining a “teenager.” I admonish myself for needing the conflict, needing to be a martyr, needing the added scars for attention. I wonder if I just want to be a “dark poet,” the kid in the back of the class who pulls her flannel shirt sleeves over her hands and looks askance at everyone.

But then I accidentally share with someone. I share a story that I’ve long-since accepted as a part of my history, and I share it with a chuckle. It doesn’t seem to matter what the story is, I am almost always met with silence. I look up and meet a shocked face, and it always takes a few days before the listener stops treating me a little bit more tenderly than normal.

Because I am damaged. I didn’t make it all up. I’m not lying, I’m not trying to make anyone feel sorry for me. I also don’t want to cover up my stories, because this is the way I’ve always seen the world. Conversely, I don’t want to share too much. I want to be normal.

I was never hit, and so I tell myself that my situation isn’t extreme. I still believe that no single thing that has happened to me is more than an average woman’s experience. And that sucks, but it is reality. Compiled together in one list, however, my wounds look like an overwhelming tide. In one list, they look like more baggage than any life partner would ever want to take on, regardless of how lovely I might be in other ways. How do I say to someone, “Please don’t joke about the size of my ass, I have a longstanding eating disorder,” followed immediately with, “Yes, I know that person, but I don’t want to hang out with him since he raped me at a party?” How do I say that to someone? It seems to be too much for another person to bear.

I am damaged. I don’t want anyone else to have to hold up the weight of that damage, and so I hold it all myself. I wish that one day I’d be able to know that someone else could hear it all and still laugh with me, joke with me, love me. I just worry, sometimes, that it is all too much.

23 comments:

-R- said...

I love this post. And I just want to say to the poster that you are not alone, and you need to trust that other people can handle this.

3carnations said...

People are always shocked to hear difficult things that people have endured...They need time to process it, and once they do, I think they realize that the person who shared it is no more damaged than the rest of us. :)

nancypearlwannabe said...

This post gave me chills. So well written. You'll find that person, the person that can take away the weight of your stories without diminishing them.

One Smart Cookie said...

This post made me cry... I don't know what to say other than that...

Rockycat said...

We are all damaged, in our own individual ways.

Erikka said...

some day you will find someone who can bear the hurt. because though you are broken and feel it surpasses the list of usual human capacity for enduring, you are not alone. we are all broken. though everyone has something different to share, we all have a story.

Chris said...

I very much identify with the "list" and trying to communicate an uncomfortably sorted personal history.

To echo the others, you are far from alone. As opposed to skeletons, I believe many of us have more animated corpses in the closet.

Chris said...

Also, don't mistake events that build integrity and character for damage.

Erika said...

I felt the same way but I did find someone who loves me with all of the damage and craziness that I bring to the relationship. He has loved me for the past 13 years and we have three beautiful children. It will happen for you. Everyone brings different things to the table. Your past experiences have made you who you are today. When you find that someone he will love ALL of you.

sognatrice said...

We're all damaged and we're all perfect just the way we are. It's accepting both of those simultaneously that's so hard.

You should tear up that list.

lizgwiz said...

Very moving post. I wish for you that you'll find someone who can not only accept the "damage," but help to heal it. It will happen.

Sauntering Soul said...

Wow, what an incredibly powerful post. And one that hits home.

As other commenters have said, we all have our flaws and broken bits. I certainly have my share and have one big skeleton that very few people know about. I guess we all have to figure out how to use those things to build strength and character rather than letting them define us as broken. That can be a difficult thing to do though as I know all too well.

nabbalicious said...

I can definitely relate to this - sometimes I wonder if I'll ever totally overcome the various ways I've been hurt, or if the damage is just too lasting and permanent.

Operation Pink Herring said...

We are all damaged. And that makes us who we are. Great post.

Stefanie said...

Oh my goodness. Whoever you are, I Internet hug you.

Also, I second (and third and fourth) the sentiments people have already shared. Our trials make us stronger, and they help shape who we are. The person who loves you will understand that and will love you for all you've been through.

Laura said...

As many others have said, there is that person out there that will love you not only despite whatever damage you have, but because of the person you have become by living through the nightmare. And when you do find that person you will realize one day after a while of being together that you don't think about that damage or baggage nearly as much as you used to. When you realize that you will know you have found your home. I did. You will too. Good luck on your journey

Danielle said...

Thank you for putting this out there. There is more than one person that is reading this post right now and realizing that they are not alone. And that can be the one thing that gets that person through the day...

Maria said...

This post made me cry too. Even though we are all damaged, we often feel very alone in our situation. I think it's the human condition. We all think we're alone, and then we die. Well, we need to connect, we need to touch and be touched, and we shouldn't be afraid to share these things.

L Sass said...

You're more normal than you think, anonymous.

Gwen said...

Sometimes the flippancy with which we tell our damage stories belies the pain of the events that caused it. We've told it so many times (maybe even just to oursselves) that it can be told easily. That doesn't mean it was.

Echo said...

I agree with -R- other people CAN handle this, you beautiful anonomous blogger you. Thank you for such a lovely post and for speaking so close to my heart. It is true that everyone does have baggage, it is just usually all different kinds of baggage. Whomever your partner ends up being will have baggage of their own, and you both will love each other because that baggage makes you who you are.

Morticcia said...

Geesh, I live this blogger's life every day. It is a very lonely road. Wow.

Anonymous said...

hey guess what, all of that can happen to one single person and it does, more often than any of us would ever expect or like to hear. i send you love and gratitude for sharing it out loud.