Tag Archives: ed

That “Little Voice”

9 Dec

I cannot remember exactly when that little voice in the back of my head sprang to life and started talking to me, but I do know it has been a dominate force in my life for years and that it developed sometime long ago when I was a pre-teen. The little voice is that terrible narrator in your head telling you rotten statements that are not true. My little voice has always said things like:

you are not good enough
they do not like/love you
you are ugly, stupid, and fat.
you will never become anything.
you will never be important.
you, ultimately, do not matter.

Looking back on my childhood (because is that not where most of our little voices develop those strong vocal chords), I see a connection between my little voice and my mother. My mother has suffered from OCD, anorexia, and serve anxiety for years. The anorexia started when she was a teenager; the other two developed more and more as she became an adult.

I first started noticing my mother’s problems with herself when I was eleven. She would stare at herself for ten to thirty minutes multiples time a day in the mirror in my bedroom. My closet doors were mirrors. I loved dancing in front of them pretending I was Baby Spice, but my mother used them to pick herself apart.

How much older than your father do I look?
I am getting chunky.
Wow, I look haggard.
I am ugly.

She would ask me questions that, as a young girl, I thought were weird. My mom has always been beautiful. Even if she was not my mom, I would think that. She confused me. Why did she not see what I saw?

Hearing my mother’s negative self-talk made me start to look at myself more critically. Where the kids at school right? I was tall, pale, and overweight. I did not really focus on this anymore. I was no longer being teased. I had friends now. I was happy. Or was it all a lie? My mom’s self-hate was contagious. The voice was probably born sometime around here when I was between eleven and twelve.

When my mom would stop eating, I wanted to lose weight her. I wanted boys at school to look at me the way grown men looked at her. When I was between thirteen and fifteen, my mother and I went through an ugly time together. We spent a lot of time eating lettuce and drinking Slim Fast. We were unhappy and constantly telling each other just how shitty we found ourselves to be.

I also picked up on her perfectionist qualities. Anything below an A in school (with the exception of math) was disgusting. I was not going to hold myself to the slacker standards of my peers. I struggled some nights between all my honors/AP classes and extra-curricular activities. I wanted to be fresh and creative to teachers regardless of how long I had to spend on the assignment.

The thing about the voice is: I never was able to make myself happy. No grade was good enough. No compliment was true. No report card filled me with pride. No matter what I did. I was not enough. I always had to be better….but I never actually thought I was better.

Same as my mother, I hit a point when nothing mattered anymore. I graduated and decided to not go to college. I worked for a fast food place instead. I consigned myself to eating and working for barely over minimum wage. I hated myself and wanted to torture myself because I thought living that way was what I deserved.

For almost three years, I have been working on accepting myself. I came out of a major depression and have slowly started to work on things, like that little voice.

Having a child of my own has been a big part of why I want to fix my real flaw. It will not matter if i’m fat, skinny, average, beautiful, or ugly. What will affect my son is how I feel about myself and what I do with my life. I do not want to teach him insecurities and self-hate.

As I approach the end of my first full semester of community college, I am proud. I do not have straight As and, for once, I am alright with that. I worked hard for a steady 3.5, but I did not let the pressure of school, my family, and the little voice get to me. Yes, I had days that I felt like a moron. There were also days I told myself to drop all of my classes because I would never be able to obtain a degree. However, I was able to ignore those thoughts. I was able to push through and, for the first time in maybe…ever, I feel proud of myself. Long ago, I let the voice dominate me. Now I know that even though I will never be perfect, I can still be the most amazing me. (and it may sound cheesy but it’s a big step for me!)

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The Aftermath Has an Aftertaste of Dirt

24 Nov

I am woken up by my husband before nine this morning. His face looks weary. He is hoovering over me like he has something to tell me that he does not want me to know. I ask him if he picked up the car. He has picked up the car, but he has some bad news along with the good news.

I get up and snatch the keys from his hands. I slide my feet through my blue slip-ons and rush outside. There is the car. The car looks just as it always has. Beige, used, and oddly reliable. I cannot bring myself to place the key in the lock. I cannot bring myself to open the car door. I think of the scumbag breaking open my car door. The scumbag sitting in the driver’s seat of my car.

My husband comes over and opens the car door for me. The car looks as if a mini-tornado ripped through it. I feel violated. My stomach feels sick and I struggle to look through the mess. My son’s bike is in the trunk, but it is the only thing that was left. My running shorts, knee straps, my sports bra, weight lifting gloves, my running shoes, the toys we were going to donate, and my husband’s tool set are all gone. I become slightly dizzy. Who steals a pair of used running shorts? Who steals ripped weight lifting gloves? I am at a loss. I scream out some obscenities and slam the car door shut.

I had my workout stuff in the car because I was going to the gym right after I spent the afternoon with hubs. Otherwise, I would never just leave those things in the car. I do not typically use the car as a chest of drawers.

I feel violated. I am angry. I am grateful to have the car back, but then disgusted because I should not have to be grateful about that. No one should have to be thankful for getting their car back after it was stolen from them.

The cops told my husband, last night on the phone, that what saved us is that we had a practically empty tank. The lowlife only made it to the next town over. When the cops found our car, the engine was still warm.

I was upset last night. Then, I was thrilled to find out we would get the car back today. Now, after seeing the car, I feel disgusting. Someone ripped apart my car, looked at the items, and decided what was best to steal. I feel like the turkey carcass after a big Thanksgiving dinner; People picking the last morsels of meat and then they throw out the bones.

The lowlife stole the laundry basket in the trunk and filled it with the stolen goods. I can picture him riffling through my car and then fleeing in the night. But I cannot imagine how he (or she) feels. How does a person like that tick? Clearly that car is owned by a family. The loser stole our registration, took my id out of my gym stuff, and threw my son’s Disneyland hat in the trunk. That scum saw parts of us and we will never know who he is. We will never know why he did it or what he did with our stuff. This is what bothers me most. He broke in, took our mode of transportation, stole most of what was in it, and disrupted my family’s life.

I want to forget about all of this. I want to sit in front of  the television and veg. I want to eat junk food. I want a big bag of Jack in the Box. I want to stop being angry. I wish I could be more grateful that we have our car back. I am disappointed in myself. I do not know what to do. Handling emotions is not something I have ever been able to do.