Write hard and clear about what hurts

Write hard and clear about what hurts. Write hard and clear about what hurts. Write hard and clear about what hurts.

The mantra repeats over and over again in my head. I remind myself of it when I feel stuck. I remind myself tear-stained pages are okay. I remind myself I’m no less beautiful with mascara streaming down my face. That the hurt will be there until I leap fearlessly into its waiting arms. Until I dive in to face it, submerging myself completely like I do at the lake on the first warm enough day of the year. The hurt, the longing won’t go anywhere until I make it. I have to work fight. Acknowledge. Acknowledge. But with so much swirling around in my head, how do I figure out what hurts?

Write hard and clear about what hurts. Sometimes the words flow from my pen faster than I can keep up with them, and I bleed all over the page making as big a mess on my brand new, pristine notebook as I seem to do in life. Sometimes I can’t stop them from coming out. Sometimes I look at them against the yellowish white of my notebook and just think “shit.”Because the pen goes places I don’t allow my mind to wander. It sneaks its fine tip into the corners of my mind I refuse to go because I’m afraid what I may discover. The pen tells me more about my feelings than I tell it. It hits at the truth I’m always trying to over think, to over complicate. So I run from it, like I do everything else. Because that’s all I know how to do. I find the loving touch of another escape, a favorite distraction. One that seems easier even if it’s not without it’s own complications. One that ignites a part of me I thought was lost, washed away in the mundane aspects of everyday life. One that masks the pain, even just for a little while.

Sometimes you just have to make a damn mess out of everything to figure out what the hell you want. And sometimes you look around at what you’ve done, and you still don’t know.

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My best friend takes some pretty rad pictures of me, then does some crazy ghosty things to them. Photo credz: Emma Whitley

Write hard and clear about what hurts. But what if nothing is clear? Make it clear. Let the words fall out of you until you have no more. Face it. Feel it. You can mask the hurt. You can build this place where you think everything could be okay, but if it isn’t based on truth, it will crumble. Then what am I left with? Someone new to blame the hurt on? The hurt was there long before anyone else.

Write hard and clear about what hurts. I repeat it. Over. and over. and over. and over. and over again. But I don’t want the pen to find the things I’m hiding. I don’t want to know the truth. It’s easier to keep running. Keep pretending. Sometimes I put the pen to paper and nothing comes out because I’ve built a fortress around those parts of my brain. Because telling yourself you don’t know what you want is easier than chasing what you want.

Sometimes you have to make a mess. I have this way about me of making things bigger than they are. Of needing everything to be catastrophic or romantically beautiful. I have this way of loving people harder than they could ever love me in return, whether that be romantically, friendship or family. I’ve been told I’m oversensitive. That I give love too easily to too many people who don’t deserve it. That’s probably true, but what’s wrong with loving with all you have? Maybe we need more of that.

That being said, some things are just things. Some things just happen and they aren’t any more than what they are on the surface: ill-advised choices fueled by some combination of alcohol, fear and a general discontent. Things can happen and then go back to how they were before because it isn’t that big of a deal anyhow. They just are. People come and go, and I need to learn to let them. They’ll come back if it’s meant to be. It’ll happen if it’s meant to, so someone once told me. And so right they were. So why can’t I apply that here? Because I’m not one to let things be, but it’d do me good to learn to.

I think a part of me will always think “what if, what if, what if” about a lot of things. But where has that ever gotten anyone?

Write hard and clear about what hurts. My pen hovers over the page, eager to bleed. Thoughts race through my head, but none of them come out. Something hurts, but it’s not clear what.


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