it was always an ideal to me
mental illness was a theory, a concept of something tragic
that could never touch someone like me
because girls with dimpled smiles and happy families
do not push food around on their plates
to distract from emotional pain
or lie awake at night, unable to sleep
as they try to decide which is worse–
the unexplainable heartache, or the hunger in their stomachs
so when the disorder took over my mind
my head was filled with wild notions
of the tortured soul i desired to be
thin, pale, and comforted by my wan frame
i wrote on my wrists
remained a wisp of a creature
and told myself it was beautiful to be broken
burying myself in sad music and therapy sessions
i pretended i was trying
because everyone wanted so desperately
for the skinny girl to just eat something
but it wasn’t long before
my porcelain face began to crack
as with it came the walls
i had so carefully built for dramatic effect
and instead of theatrical heroism
i simply saw dark circles and ugly ribs
and a confused little girl who needed to confront her demons
before they destroyed her soul
the same way they had killed her body
so instead of fighting for frailness
and holding on to the illness
that had for so long pretended to be my friend
i finally began exposing the voices that haunted me
i allowed the light
to seep in through the fragments that were left of me
i welcomed the help
i had previously feigned to accept
and i let it all transform me
into someone real, and healthy, and so very alive
who is beginning to come to the understanding
that it’s okay to be damaged
and to embrace your vulnerability
but it’s even more okay to try to put yourself back together
learning to accept and heal
and eventually leaving the past behind
as you allow yourself to finally become the person
you were meant to exist as all along.

Photo Credit: unsplash-logoTimothy Paul Smith

15 Replies to “Masquerade”

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