Real Talk

So it’s like 5:00 am and I am awake. Tons of nightmares. Tons of worries. Totally need to punch a hole through the wall… That was the Hulk, remember? I just like to imagine that I’m strong enough to punch a hole through the wall.

With me messaging those guys who only want one thing- I told one of my ex guyfriends about it because I wanted a reason to stop and not do it. He just told me he didn’t know what to say and that was it. I had hoped that by telling him I would “come to my senses” and not do anything. Or that he’d tell me it was gonna be okay and that I didn’t need to feel so alone.

When I hear from law enforcement and the church that they won’t do anything about the rapist who caused all this damage to me, it feels like I just got raped again. It’s humiliating. It makes me feel absolutely powerless. It makes me so depressed I’m not sure I’d be upset if I died. And that lonely feeling of not really having anyone to tell and there is one new friend Nikki who I tell things to and she’s so amazing for putting up with me but for some reason my emotional self is just not connecting to her. And then we sit here and we say “Oh, but girl, trust takes time.”

You know what it’s like being anorexic? Time is so limited. It’s a constant gamble, a risk that you’ll come back from a workout and pass out and that’s it. Or that any part of your body will break or tear apart. That maybe just out of the blue, your friends and family can’t handle it anymore.

The reality of mental illness is that every human has a clock of their life’s time clicking away- and when you have a mental illness it’s even more so. I’m not talking about physical death, I am talking about emotional death, the death of relationships, the death of careers and hopes and dreams. A year ago I lost a friend to a long-term mysterious lung disease that no one knew how to cure and despite all those tests and all that chemo it took her life. I saw a picture of her when she was a senior in high school. To me, she was beautiful her whole life, and I met her while the illness ravaged her body.

Maya couldn’t breathe without an oxygen tube that made little hup-hup sounds as she moved around the house. She used to a have a slender body, beautiful long dark hair, perfect white teeth, but above all Maya used to be free. She used to be glowing with health and vitality. Then all of the sudden that was just gone. The clock swung to 6 and that was all it took. She was destroyed by the chemo. She lost all of her beautiful black hair. Her lung collapsed. She couldn’t breathe. She couldn’t do anything by herself she was so ill. The steroids the doctors put her on made her gain over a hundred pounds. She could barely leave the house and when she came to church she had to stand up or lie on the bench depending on how she was that day, and people would watch her like she was doing something wrong.

Here is the thing about prayer- it’s lovely to pray for someone. Good job, pat yourself on the back.

Now kick your ass and get to work.

I believe in miracles but I also believe that miracles take work. One of the most disheartening things that I saw when I went over to Maya’s was that no matter how many people at church offered their help practically none of them actually came over to her house to help. I didn’t even understand what was going on fully because no one really knew the name of Maya’s illness but I remember going to her house to clean her bathrooms and floors and vacuuming. I remember buying mango ice cream for her and cooking saimin, dumplings, beef and rice, different foods for her at different times. Sometimes both her and her mother.

I know that people pray for me but that’s not enough. Just look at me. I spent two hours in the gym yesterday to compensate for the pain I’m in and I could have spent more. I don’t want you to pray for me, I want you to show up for me. Just literally come stand here and be with me. A true Christian walks the walk.

One of the things KT and I disagreed on and this story Is hard and painful to tell because it’s the day he left me and I lost two best friends. I was sitting up all night with my little dog Angel who I loved desperately and she was in pain and we were going to put her down the next day. And I told him having prayers and Jesus in my life was great, but it’s not the same as having a best friend. Jesus doesn’t come buy ice cream with you or give you hugs. And he said “Don’t say that it’s so ungrateful. Honestly Jesus should be all you need.”

And those were the last words he ever said to me

If what any of these churchgoing people say is true, then the whole entire reason we are on this earth is to do what Jesus would do if He was here. Healing the sick and afflicted, mourning for loss, supporting each other. Last time I checked, Jesus ain’t here. He doesn’t show up when I’m crying and give me a hug. Women get raped every single day and a destroying angel doesn’t show up and stop him.

Maybe, my dear Mormon/ Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints people, maybe that’s why we’re here! Not to tut-tut or “send prayers” but to show up dammit.

I guess one of the only things you can count on is that human frailty is eternal and that we don’t keep our promises and we don’t show up for those who need us and we don’t share nearly enough love- but if we don’t strive for some sort of ideal then what is left? If we’re not even trying to be good people, how can we possibly improve that way?

I’m not sure what I’m going to do today. I am tired and sad and deeply upset about my friends in treatment leaving treatment and struggling so hard just to survive and how small support they get at church and from their families. Like I said people it’s very cute to pray and we appreciate it but I am going to say it again. Get down on your knees and pray, then get up, kick your ass, and get to work.

(and for those of you that read the Holy Bible that statement will have a different meaning to you)

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