One of the saddest realizations I ever had was learning how much I had let myself be worn down by others. I was the invisible child. Literally, no one ever knew where I was or what I was up to. The only time people acknowledged me was to note how intelligent I was or to hurt me. I am 25 years old and it keeps hitting me how much of myself I keep hidden.
It was merely a few short years ago that I even realized I could say no to unwanted sex. That I could say no to ideas I disagreed with. That there was a real person inside of me that was bursting at the seams to get out. That my stories were literally my story, my way of traversing my mental landscape, and hunting down that small child whose words never mattered.
I have always loved my anger. This may sound strange but anger is a wonderful fuel. It practically requires you to act. Unfortunately most people don’t let their rationality guide it. I am odd. My anger prompts me into a frenzy of reasoning. I berate people with logic. If there is no direction for my anger, I clean. My house never looks so beautiful. My anger helped save me. Every time I wanted to die, to give up, to just go crazy I grew angry. I cannot quit.
My anger grew when I chose to unlock that box of horrid memories. The name of that box is Human Napkin. In so many ways people often treat others as if they are disposable and it is disgusting. I have served as a human napkin for the majority of my life. I have wasted so much precious time because I locked myself in that box. No one but my sister cared for my welfare so what reason did I have to care for it?
I checked out and let others do as they pleased. I gave this phenomenon that name due to it actually happening to me. I had a terrible “friend” who would wipe her dirt-encrusted hands on me. Because I mattered that little to her. People have in one way or another been wiping their dirty fingers all over my spirit my entire life.
My anger led to me starting a new practice: making a promise to myself each year. That first year, at 19, I promised myself I would never be raped again. Another promise in the last few years was to eject assholes from my life. Yet another was to sort my knowledge and beliefs, getting rid of the junk. This year my promise is to say what I really have to say. To be emotionally honest no matter how awkward I am about it. I am not inanimate, I am here, and I’m learning to express myself. I definitely am not here to take on anyone else’s garbage or to make them take mine.
Take care in your interactions with others. Don’t wipe your hands on them. Don’t let them wipe their hands on you. I am not disposable! And neither are you.