She stared at the computer screen. If time were flying, she hadn’t noticed. The minutes crept with tired ankles and the hours sluggishly ticked away.
With her jaw propped snugly upon the palm of her hand, she remembered the time where she floated fearlessly above the lake. She remembered how full of fear she was before she was comfortably positioned to watch the birds flock in their playground.
As her feet would glide on the lakes floor, her toes desperately clutched the soggy earth beneath them as the water inched higher and higher. She was frightened. What lied beneath? Were there monsters lurking in the overgrown weeds? Would their gills flare at the thought of tasting her? Did she see movement in the corner of her eyes?
Yet, nothing seemed to stop her from moving toward the deep.
She took a big breath. She felt the soothing weight of the lake crush her fears.
Seconds later, she was greeting the sun with a bright smile upon her face.
It was then that she remembered, she had always been fearless even through the fear.
Whistling filled the cluttered walls of her mind as she watched the steam fly up and away from the angry lid that rattled fiercely against the spout. Her water was done boiling. Her tea was perfectly steeped.
As she hesitantly took her first sip, with fear of burning consequences, the bite of sour tickled the sides of her tongue just the way she liked it. And as the warm liquid traveled down her doorway, she watched the steam leave the porous wedge of lemon she had thrown in her cup last minute.
The steam traveled with slow intent.
She wondered if the steam knew it would travel just to end up nowhere?
She wondered if she would travel from the place of nowhere?
And if she could figure out a way to leave, she would be sure to make it an adventure.
She was the sun.
He, the moon.
It burned to love her, so he failed to catch her whenever she would fall.
She burned to love him, but his darkness she feared.
They tried traveling the same path for years, until life made it very clear, that their aligning was never forever.
Saturday morning was another ordinary morning. I woke up with running thoughts and in an attempt to stall them, I cooked myself breakfast. Moving around in the kitchen moves my focus from point A to point B and if I’m lucky, it will last longer than a few moments. Today, luck wasn’t on my side.
My breakfast consisted of turkey sausage and scrambled eggs with onions and bell peppers dressed on top of a bed of boiled cabbage, which still had a bit of crunch. Mmmm. You may be thinking, “Cabbage? For breakfast?” Yes, my friend. Breakfast cabbage wraps need to be the new ‘It’ thing, but I digress.
Not even a yummy breakfast could pull me away from the lingering crappy mood I had woken with. I was bummed. I often wake up still wishing I could say good morning to my ex. I find that this normally happens when I go to bed wishing I could say goodnight. We came to an agreement a week ago, that communicating with one another wouldn’t allow us to successfully lead our lives in a healthier direction. I find it hard to agree with things I don’t agree with, but understanding the benefits of an agreement does make it easier. But it still sucks.
For those of you wondering, and for the sake of being transparent, I ended a six year relationship at the beginning of February this year. I left, because my ex had ‘acted out’ in ways that was beginning to destroy me mentally and eventually, physically. Within our relationship, we went through a number of trials of deceit, secrets, and plain ole bullshit. But since my departure, I’ve had plenty of time to raise myself out of the victim role and see that I, too, played a role in the demise of our partnership.
One of my major roles, one I portrayed quite well, was being unhappy with myself as a person; as a woman. I was not a fan of myself and especially not of my body. Throughout our relationship, my ex did a number of things that didn’t help me with my self-bashing, so the self-hatred ran deeper and rampant for a long time. Until, I decided to leave.
I stand five feet and four inches tall, with the build of a pear (I carry most of my weight in my hips), and weigh 247 pounds. I am proud to say this, but there was a time where I wouldn’t or even couldn’t say it.
I use to dread being naked in front of him. I thought about that three digit number, which was higher last year, almost every day. I second guessed myself, my looks, my abilities, and my presence in his life. He had made it clear many times before that the woman of my build wasn’t what he was instinctively attracted to. I could respect this, but I could never understand why he continued to remain in my life if I wasn’t what he fantasied about. One moment I was obsessed with wanting to become the woman he craved and the next moment, I was angry. I was angry with him, because he never made me feel good enough. I was angry with myself, because I desperately wanted to be happy with every roll, every mark, and with every pot hole delicately crafted into my thighs. For the crashing portions of our relationship, which were the past two years, being in a crappy mood was something I became accustomed too. I was happy with being miserable.
Of course, when I left our relationship, which consisted of a 14 hour drive to a new state, I had made the decision to leave being miserable behind. But like any new skill, living in light becomes a practice; at least for me. I may have neglected this practice for a month or so. I found myself falling back into the molds of second guessing myself, wondering why he didn’t desire me as much as he desired the women behind his computer screen and why the flab of fat above the right side of my belly button rolled out so much. It wasn’t until Saturday morning that I had to slap myself in the face and point out how ridiculous I had been lately. I had forgotten I was no longer angry with him. I had forgotten that I was no longer angry with myself.
So, instead of bowing down to crappiness, I put on my workout gear, tied up my laces and took my ass to the park and there, I ran. I ran. I walked. I jogged. Although my breath decided to elude me more often than I had hoped it didn’t, I didn’t stop going until the crap began to fade.
I spent an hour and a half walging that afternoon (walging, my new word for walk/jog). More so, I spent time battling against a demon of mine that dwelled for years. Surprisingly, after four miles and blistered heels later, I had won. I hushed that puppy like a hungry man hushes his meal.
Since Saturday, I’ve been walging more often. Before now, my exercise routines have been less routine and more, “Do I feel like working out today? Yes. Maybe. No.” But the beautiful thing about running for me, now, is that it is less about exercise and more about sanity and a clear conscious. It makes me accountable for my own emotions and thoughts. It reminds me that it was never his duty to assure me of my looks and all that I felt I lacked as a person.
I like how the roll above my belly button seems to wink at me and how my faded stretch marks make me look like a wild and exotic cat. Meow!
I never understood my friends when they would profess their addiction to the gym. I knew working out felt good, but it felt more like a chore. Now, I understand.
Crappy days will always be in my forecast, but now I know that I’m still able to run through the rain.