Truth be told I am pretty good at acting like I have my shit together, when really I am falling a part. Or maybe I am making that up, and only think that I do...
I talk a lot about loosing who I was somewhere along the way. The parts of me that made me who I am. I didn't realize how much of an impact simple things had on me and my life. That was until I took an assessment of my life, where I was and where I wanted to end up. I gave into the darkness and depression. I was naive to believe that with therapy and other treatment, that one day I wouldn't be so sad. And on this day, I would pick up where I left off. But that wasn't the case. My depression became my normally, and my good days became more and more rare. The ugly truth of it all, is I didn't give a shit about me. Not in the same ways I had before. I stopped showering as often, and went 3-4 days before I could even find the motivation. I used to be the kind of person that showered every morning and put myself together. So, to go that long and no care.. well, that just wasnt me. I am a firm believer when you look good, you feel good. Its like putting good vibes out into the world. You put good vibes out into the world, you will get them back in return. Karma doesn't always have to be negative.
At what point did I stop caring about me. Here I am trying to work on fixing the broken parts of me, but then breaking new ones. An endless cycle I am creating. I want to be happy. I won't stop until I find it.
This past week I pushed myself to get up every morning, and get me together like I used to. This meant getting up at 4:30-5 in the morning, showering, creamy pretty scented lotion, cute hair, and a damn near perfect face of makeup. It was my goal to push myself to do that every day. I am not going to lie the first few days were difficult. I had the mentally of "who really gives a fuck how I look". Also, I thought more sleep would help my mental state.
I did it. Every single morning I got up, showered, got ready and went to work. By Thursday morning it felt like a normal routine and by Friday I actually felt happy. A feeling I haven't truly felt in a long time. Even people at work were noticing the difference in my moods and how I was taking care of myself. I'm known for my makeup talents, but because it was more consistent, I got more compliments. It was like therapy and a confidence boost all in one.
Because of this week, and because of how I got that glimpse back of happy... I'm going to do it on a regular basis. Get back to my normal routine. I matter and I need to realize that. Taking care of me first is what matters most right now. From there I can build. Build into meal prep and work out routine so I can also get back down to my happiest weight.
I feel good. For the first time, at the end of a really shitty year, I have hope that my sadness and depression is going to get the boot.
Below are selfies I took every day of my work week.
This one is for me... well, in reality they all are because I don't know anyone who really "follows" this blog. It's not the reason I started it, and it's not going to be the reason I continue it.
I haven't wrote anything in awhile, or at least nothing heart felt and therapeutic. I've been going through some things. It's as simple and as complicated as that. Everyone asks me "what's going on?" or "what happened?" or "is there anything I can do?". It's always the same answer... I don't know. I can't make heads or tails of why I feel the way I feel. Each day is different and it's always something new that triggers me. Honestly, because I can't seem to figure it out, and I feel like I owe an explanation, I want to hide. I want to lock myself away from the rest of the world because I can't bear to face it. I'm not a dishonest person and I hate that I can never given anyone an explanation on what is wrong. I believe the fact that I can't actually hide from the world makes it worse. But... there are bills to pay and people that "need" me.
I used to take a lot of selfies...well I still do. But in the past I would have a great big smile that you could see in my eyes. Now, they are normally forced and few and far between.
More so recently, I have had an overwhelming feeling of being unloved. I'm not the version of me that they want to love, so I get pushed aside. In my 30 years of living, I know that is not really true but the feeling is very real. Unfortunately, more often than not it has been a reality of mine. The people that were supposed to show me and teach me unconditional love, instead taught me that love comes with a price and stipulations. If you aren't will to pay the price or play by the rules then you are no longer a factor. I have begged and pleaded my whole life for someone to love me for who I am, as I am. I even asked the woman in the mirror. You hear and read all the time, "If you want others to love you, you must first learn to love yourself". What if in the same token, you don't love yourself because you haven't been shown you're worthy of such love? These are thought that are always on my mind.
I wake up every morning and I don't want to exist. It takes every single ounce of strength I have to get up, shower, put myself together, and put on a brave face for the world to see. It takes even MORE out of me when it's asked of me to do social activities. If I didn't have to show my face to the world, then I wouldn't be such a disappointment.
Why am I not enough to be loved as a daughter? The unconditional type of love. The one that makes someone feel protected and safe. Instead, all love came with conditions. If I didn't meet the expectations there were consequence. No protection. No safe space. Why am I not enough to be loved as a partner? The kind of love that makes you feel complete/whole and like you can take on the world. Instead, I have been second best in past attempts. Many nights alone. Or me fighting the world, with them rooting behind me. Why am I not enough to be loved as a friend? The kind of love that is a never ending with the deepest and longest memories. Instead, my friendship wasn't what was wanted or needed, and I was easy to walk away from.
Now, this does not hold true for everything in my life. Just most of it.
Unless I have something to offer, or I can be a certain type of person, I am not worthy of love. Love is used as a weapon against me as the consequences for my actions; or lack there of. That is what I have been taught by my experiences. I wish I had someone to remind me throughout my life "you is kind. you is smart. you is important". That is funny and seems silly, but it's so true. Or even a time machine so I can tell my younger self all of that. One day, and hopefully soon, maybe I will be able to write a letter to my younger self and tell her it's all worth it. That she was worth it.
Right now... I don't feel that way. I hang on because that's what I'm supposed to be doing. I'm not supposed to feel like giving up on the world and throwing in the towel. I'm supposed to fight because it will get better blah blah blah. It's probably true but the sad version of Brittany doesn't give a shit. Ha!
If you ask me if I'm ok, I'm going to give you a polite short answer or not say anything at all. I don't know how to answer that question. I understand there isn't anything anyone can do, or if there is I haven't figured it out yet. Just know, I get up every morning and fight another day. Some are better than others. Today, and more days as of recent, happens to be one of the tougher ones. Talking about it (actually writing about it) helps and frees me from my cage that is my dark mind. Hopefully one day soon I can write about something something happy.
The woman that doesn't require validation from anyone is the most feared individual on the planet. -Mahadesa Najumi
About a week ago I was propositioned by a woman who sees more in me than I saw in myself. This beautiful woman is a very successful Pure Romance consultant. She asked me if I would be a live lingerie model for an event she was doing. All excited, I said sure. Didn't even miss a beat or give it a second thought.
Then after the fact, and a after I already made the commitment, I got nervous. It was because she had tagged me in the post with all the available options of outfits to chose from. I immediately became self conscious. I looked nothing like the models. I don't have the type of body that fits well into a perfect package. Not only that but I am awkward in person. Soon after this moment of panic I realize that I had a concert that night. The modeling gig was 1:30pm-5pm and I had to be home to change to go to the venue promptly after.
In the post where I was tagged for the available options, I allowed for an item to be chosen for me. Well, she had decided on what I deemed as the most risky piece available. The model looked absolutely gorgeous in the piece. I felt like I was going to look like a busted can of biscuits. I was anxious for days and if I was being honest, I was thinking of ways to back out. Even up until the last minute.
I had attempted to buy thigh high leggings, after I talked myself into following through with it for the 18th time, and they were way to small for my thunder thighs. I then was incredibly frustrated. Not only was back fat Betty going to be out to play but so was cellulite sally was going to make an appearance as well. I decided since my body was going to look like shit I need to make my face look flawless.
It is now the day of, and I have taken way too long to get ready. Not only that but it decided to start pouring rain as I was leaving. I needed to make a pit stop at the store for tights, because the thigh highs wouldn't fit, and was running late.
On my way to the store, and to the venue, and I was trying to come up with a million excuses to back out. Then, on top of it all, because of the rain, everyone was driving incredibly slow. But, I did it and I made it.
I had a lot of self talk in the car and days prior. The self talk consisted of saying I could do this over and over again. Trying to be an influence for other woman. And I also kept telling myself that no woman looks like the model, but more woman look like me. So I HAD to do this and my anxiety wouldnt get in the way.
I did it... I showed up. I was anxious and nervous. After checking in I received my oufit and went into the bathroom where the other models were changing. I told the garment out of the packaging, after removing my other clothes, and put it on. It was at that moment I had fully expected to be uncomfortable and frustrated because of the way it fit. I had thought I was going to have to give myself some more self talk. However, much to my surprise, the opposite happened. When I put the lingerie piece on it slide on like a glove. As if it was made for me... It fit every inch of my body perfect and flawlessly. I had previously attempted to put on my tights and they were too tight. I decided to go without stockings. With the way the outfit looked on me, I was ok with cellulite Sally coming out to play. I stepped out of the stall and looked into the mirror and saw a woman I didnt recognize. A strong sexy woman.
I stepped out into the open floor of the venue, where I was set to mingle and let people know about what I was wearing. There was so MUCH positive feed back that it made me feel like I was on top of the world. Thinking about it now makes me want to cry.
I am so glad I followed through with the experience because it was what I had needed. However, it broke my heart to hear woman say,"That looks really good on you!! But it wouldn't look good on me". I had thought the SAME thing right before I had put the outfit out.
My word of advise is... Do NOT doubt yourself. You are sexy and you have the ability to be sexy.
I strongly encourage woman to buy lingerie and wear it; even if its around the house. Or do a boudoir photo shoot. Get outside of you comfort zone but get more inside of being yourself. ♥
The Perfect Outfit For Me...
Growing up, I was the true ugly duckling. If you have seen the selfies I have posted on social media, that seems a little dramatic and far fetched. But, I'm like Abraham Lincoln and I never tell a lie.
I was awkward, over weight, had crooked teeth, wore hand me down clothes, had thick glasses and all that jazz. I was an outcast that befriended other outcasts like myself. However, because of how I looked, dressed, my mannerisms, and who I hung out with, I was made fun of a LOT when I was a child. Bullied but without anything physical. I was called "Fattany", "Big Bird" and "Know-it-all". Often taunted with the song, “fatty, fatty, 2 x4 couldn't fit through the bathroom door”. I would walk by a group of my peers, hear them whisper and then act as if the ground shook when I walked by. Honestly, I was a chunky child but I was not THAT big to deserve that kind of scrutiny.
I had a group of friends tell me once they didn’t want to be friends with me anymore to my face. It came out of no where and when I asked "why?" they could not provide an explanation. I cried and couldn’t understand what I did. I was in 2nd grade, and along with the abuse I faced at home, this is what triggered my thoughts of no one wanting me around.
Glasses were not a cool thing back when I was younger, although I thought they were pretty cool. I still remember there was a day I was walking home from school, some kid on a bike road next to me and called me four eyes the rest of the way home. Then… the epic braces. The braces that I needed to fix my messed up teeth. Brace face was fun to hear. But by the time I got braces I was in high school. So I was old enough not to entertain the name calling and would often have a witty come back if they tried.
All of it was a series of unfortunate events that was Me. Even though some of what was said hurt, I never let it define me. I had a heart of gold as a child and til this day is something I am so proud of. I would see the brighter side of things, even when no one else could. I remember there were a few friendships I developed because I walked up to the kid that stood alone and said "Hi, Im Brittany!". Out going and out spoken is the kind of person I have always been. There was a lot that little girl went through but never dulled her sparkle.
Due to abuse and general isolation, because I thought no one wanted me around, I spent a lot of time alone. During this time I would read, play on the computer, and practice putting on makeup. I would read Cosmopolitan and Seventeen, see "how to" get a certain makeup look article and practice it. Practice taking my plain ol' face and turning it into a master piece. This practice and this time I had on my hands is the reason I am as good as I am at makeup today. Just like all skills, talent can only take you so far... perseverance and practice is what makes you the best.
It was my senior year of high school when I first starting to come out of my awkward stage. I turned my glasses in for contacts and my hand me down clothes for a better fashion sense. I was finally starting to be recognized by boys and getting some positive attention for the first time in my life. I had my first kiss at 17 years old and I was on cloud 9 because a boy was paying attention to me.
Now here I am, 30 years old, and finally became the woman I wanted to be and wanted to look like. Just like everything, I could use improvements. However, I am comfortable who I am and what I look like. This is me, and no one or nothing can change that. So many people tried to bring me down, and dull my sparkle. No matter how hard they tired, the light within me was shining brighter.
Its part of my life's mission to teach other women to do the same. Other little girls that you are much more than an opinion of a peer. I want to tell them they are beautiful the way they are. I want to show them everything they have to offer in this world. I want to build other woman and girls up.
The Ugly Duckling
The Transformed Swan
Five of My Healthy Coping Mechanisms for Anxiety
It's no secret that I have pretty bad anxiety at times. I am very vocal about the struggles I face. Here are a few tips and tricks I have developed to cope with my anxiety.
HEALTHY COPING MECHANISMS:
1.) Breathing. One of the hardest things to learn how to do with as much anxiety I have is to meditate. I can't focus or stay still for that long because it feels like bugs are trying to escape out of the tips of my toes and fingers. However, breathing was something I was able to take away from learning to meditate. Fuck counting down or counting at all. That's too many things to think about HAVING to do at once, while already having an overwhelming amount on my mind. I have a very simple technique... both feet on the ground and I take slow deep breaths in through my nose and out through my mouth. I continue this until I feel my body unclench.
2.) There are often times that I have a series of jumbled up thoughts floating around my head. I can't make sense of them when I am just thinking. So there are often times I will tell my emotional support human, "alright I am going to tell you about a thing that I am thinking about. I don't expect you to have an answer. I just need to share these thoughts with someone before I explode!". When I share them, and I say all the things out loud, everything starts to make sense. I can make rational decisions. Not only that, but because I am sharing with someone, they can also provide input that helps. Either they can help reassure my feelings or tell me what I need to hear in order to get through my emotional struggle. A lot of time my consuming thoughts are about a decision I have to make, or a negative feeling I have about myself. Its a relief to be able to talk them out with someone I can trust. Get yourself an emotional support human.
3.) Hear me out... Bubble bath. This has to be one of the best forms of therapy for me. I have no choice but to relax and unwind, even if its for 10 minutes. Everyone does their version of a bath differently. Me... I make it a production. I have candles, bubbles, bath bombs, a bath pillow, and often times wine. I invest in my bath time and the products that I use as well. I think it's really important to take that extra time, at least once a month, and just completely relax. My adulting goal in life is to own a claw foot tub so I can REALLY enjoy the bath.
4.) Music can work wonders for any mood I am in. If I am angry I will blast rock music. If I am sad I will sing to sad songs. If I am happy I will dance to 2000s hip hop in my car. Well, if I have a lot of anxiety I will listen to Cello music. Not sure what it nor do I want to think about it. It immediately relaxes every tense nerve in my body.
5.) When I have no one to talk to, or a way to get out what is on my mind I will write. Hence my blog. But I also write on paper. Or in a post on instagram and/or facebook. I also make lists. Making a list is one of my favorite ways to organize my thoughts. Shopping lists, to-do lists, etc. Writing is definitely a passion I have that helps with my anxiety.
On top of these coping mechanisms I have developed unhealthy ones that I am working through. I am only human after all and definitely less than perfect. Every day is a different struggle for me. However, no matter with what I am faced, I know I am strong enough to face the day.
Shout out to all of us fighting a battle that most people don't understand. Keep hanging in there!
You keep a lot to yourself because it's difficult to find people who understand.
I have been going through a lot of emotions lately. Which has lead me to believe that, although I am incredibly sad, I am healing.
Life just doesn't happen to me. More often than not I get the shit end of the stick because its a consequence of a choice I made. I own my actions, and I do know better. I am currently faced with a world of hardship. Stuff I have put off for too long has finally come to haunt me. And just as the cards are normally dealt.... everything is hitting all at once. On top of that I am trying to juggle emotional stress and healing from some past issues and lingering PTSD. Put it in a big ol' pot and you have one fucked up stew that is my mind. There are some days I want to blame the world for what is happening to me. "Why me!?". There are some days where I feel like a failure and there is no getting out of the hole I have dug; so I might as well give up. There are other days were I am hopeless, lost, and heart broken searching for guidance on how to fix what I have broken.
Right now, I feel like I'm stuck in the hopeless, lost and heart broken. I need to fix things. I need to come up with a plan. A plan that is going to need to include a lot of struggle and hard choices. Honestly, I really need a shoulder to cry on, arms to wrap around me to tell me it will be ok, and someone to tell me what I can do to fix it. Really, I need my mom. She was that person for me. She would always be able to tell when I was on the verge of a nervous breakdown. She always knew when I REALLY needed a hug. Unfortunately, I have had to set healthy boundaries and make the choice not to have my mother a part of my life. I'm starting to regret that choice out of pure selfishness. Because right now, that little bit of good she did for me is what I really need. The reality is though, it doesnt change anything and it doesn't mean I can allow a toxic relationship back into my life just because I am at a low. Just because I had to make this choice doesnt make her any less my mother, or make it not hurt.
I have to learn something new... I have to learn to deal with it on my own. I have to figure it out, and find places of support that almost feel like some of those pieces of her are still around. Digging up the strength I know I have in me, and my driven mind set isn't easy. That woman allowed herself to be buried under her anxiety and depression. Resurrecting that woman I once was has been incredibly difficult.
Brittany, you have always been fearful of the unknown. Hesitant of taking a leap because of the possible outcome. But you never let that fear get in the way of jumping. Did you have anxiety, and doubts? Absolutely! The inner voice cheering you on was always louder than those fears. Somehow... no matter what you faced, you over came what you were going through. Not only did you achieve your goals but there was always added rewards.
You were working at the daycare full time and took on a 2nd job at subway to afford the new used car you just bought. Your first big girl car payment. 2 months after working at subway, you decided to quit your job at the daycare and go back to school. Shortly after quitting the daycare, you were faced with a choice as you were offered a management position at subway. YOU. After 3 months of working there. You decided to take the opportunity as the opportunities and benefits that came with it seems so great at the time. After 6 months of working for Subway, and 3 months of managing you were offered a position at another store. One that was on the verge of being shut down due to failed inspections. You took that store and you turned it around. Made it into what it could be. You continued to bust your ass, working 60-80 hours a week, and were offered a position as a general manager after a little over a year of working there. In the short time there you had advanced and accomplished so much. You had so much potential. Although the position felt like a great accomplishment, it didn't offer you the money you were looking for and you continued to work too many hours. You were tired. You needed to find your way out. Somehow, an opportunity opened up for a position to be an office manager for an internal medicine doctors office. So you quit subway and went there, never having experience in that field before. You NAILED it. You learned how to do just about everything. Run the office clinical and clerical, since it was just you and the doctors. However, this job didnt pay enough money and you were evicted from your apartment. So you decided, to get back on your feet you would go BACK to subway. It was easy because the shifts were opposite. Then all of a sudden you found yourself working two full time jobs to try and get back ahead. 9am-5pm doctors office, get to where you were staying and hopefully fall asleep by 6. Wake up and work subway from 10pm-6am. Go back to where you were staying, take a two hour nap, quick shower, throw on scrubs and then back to the office. You were tired and needed a different opportunity. Something with benefits. So you decided to quit the doctors office; with no other job lined up. You knew you needed to find something more. Luck behold, the person you were training to take your place told you about a place she came from called "Five Brothers". When she spoke about the job, the money and the benefits you decided "why not" and applied. You got the job!!! Now you have your very own big girl health insurance you are paying for, you are making good money, and it seems there is potential within the company. During the call you were told you are working in the Grass department, but you heard graph. That would just be silly if they had a grass department. Nope, they were right. Your training was a learn as you go kind of deal, but you nailed it. In fact, you did so well that after the grass season ended they asked you to be the official "trainer" and write a new manual. You did it.. less than a year into the job and you were prompted. The following year after the beginning of the grass season, and after the group was trained, you decided it was time to seek out other opportunities within the company. There was a conflict of interest with some superiors and it was ideal if you removed yourself from the position. From there you were transferred to another department. The position was deemed the hardest in the company. Only the best of the best could do it and you were so excited to learn something new. You learned it. During the process a wonderful opportunity to be the trainers assistant presented itself and I snatched it up! This eventually lead me into becoming a trainer myself; as it was decided more than one was needed. I helped with training material and also assisted in making the system the company uses more user friendly, for faster processing. Unfortunately, due to where the economy is at right now, there were no more people to train. So, for the first time ever you had to do the job you were training others to do. You NAILED it. You have accomplished so much life wise and career wise over the last 13 years. (BTW can you put this stuff on a resume because DAMN)
I need this. Here. To read over and over again. To remind myself what I have faced before. Where I was and where I am now. Although I am facing yet another hard phase in my life, I need to remember my strength and tenacity. I've got this. Think, collect my thoughts and make a plan.
At 30 years of age, I never thought this is what my life would be. I would be lying too if I said I wasn't disappointed. It's hard to go from seeing a certain type of future for yourself, to re-imagining in real time. The life I live right now is by no means not good, it's just not what I thought it would be.
When I was younger I had an optimistic outlook on life and what my future had in store. I thought by the time I was 30 I would be in a different place in my life. Now... not necessarily better, but definitely different. I thought I would have been married by now, or at least engaged. In my mind it always played out that I would get married after having kids and doing things backwards. The guy I would be married too would know my past and be compassionate and understanding of it. He would be my partner, and make sure every day I knew I didn't have to live life alone. It was always somewhere in my mind that the person I was with would be just as imperfect as I was. But, with us being together we would love and support each other at being the best versions of ourselves. I wanted to grow with the person I spent the rest of my life with. There would have to be lots of laughter too. So much that my stomach would hurt and even when I wanted to cry all I would do is smile.
I would have been a young mom starting off having kids in my early 20s and they all be fairly close in age. So by the time 30 hit I would at least have them all potty trained. my kids would have his stubbornness and carefree attitude. The would have my heart and creativity. They would be raised to love animals and nature, and to enjoy the simple things in life.
I would have my own house in a quiet neighborhood. My house would be 4 bedrooms and 2 bathrooms with a porch, and a big back yard. There would be so many windows in the house that I would complain about having to cleaning them. Everything would be soft and inviting. When people would come over it would feel like home, and people would be over all the time. We would host BBQs and dinner parties. Friends would bring their kids over to play with our kids. There would be holidays at the house were I would be stressed out for agreeing to host and sweat from cooking. But at the end of the day feel really grateful that I have an amazing family. I had even pictured my siblings and parents being in this picture.
Although I am a hard worker, I never imagined myself as a "career" woman. My life would matter more than my job. And I would make just enough money where we would maintain a simple life style; along with my husband. We'd all raise a puppy when the kids were old enough to help out. This would be the 3rd dog as we had two from before we had kids. There would be meals every night at the dinner table, and my kids would brag to their friends how good of a cook their mom is. Again, laughter. So much in the house. There would be bad dancing and singing. Movie nights until the kids couldn't stand the idea of hanging out with their parents any more. No matter what thought I would be a place to go for advice, laughter, guidance, and probably money. Home is where the heart is and that would be me.
I thought my focus at this point in my life would be to build a family and a simple life that I always wanted. Honestly, because none of this has happen yet, I dont see it happening for me at all. Now, this is not to say it isnt going to happen. However, this means that it cannot be my plans anymore. I don't have the family I did before because of healthy boundaries I needed to set. I don't see anyone wanting to marry me because I am a little fucked up in the head and hard to love. I spend more time alone, than I do with people. And now... my job is my life because I don't have anything else to focus on. So, where do I go from here? Do I create career goals and work on those? Plan to travel, to see the world? Collect more cats and maybe more dogs? The fact that I am so lonely and I dont know where to begin this new re-imagined point of my life, makes me want to cry.
No matter what this life has in store for me... I will make sure its lived with a lot of love, laughter and the appreciation for the simple things in life.
I'm 8 years old. I'm cleaning my room and playing while I do it. It's taking me too long is what she says. She comes bursting in angry. I don't know why she is so angry, I'm cleaning like she asked and I'm leaving her alone. She rips everything down from my closet and throws it around. Takes out my dresser drawers and dumps them on the ground. Everything is happening so quickly, and so loud. I'm begging her to stop... and I'm sorry for taking so long. I start to cry. She is mad that I'm crying because I brought this on myself. She gets really close to me and I flinch as she grabs my shoulder and shakes me. She says to me through clenched teeth, " Do I need to give you a reason to cry!?". This scares me, and I say no but start to cry harder. She continues to trash the bedroom and saying that she is going to throw all my stuff away so this can't happen again. I'm still crying, I just want her to stop. She is REALLY angry now since I won't stop crying. She grabs me by my ponytail, yanks me and throws me down on my bed. I hurry and crawl into the fetal position because I know what is going to happen. She hits me and keeps hitting me. She doesn't stop hitting me until her boyfriend at the time tells her that is enough. She then leaves the room and I lay there trying to stop myself from crying. I need to get up and hurry to get this room cleaned before she gets mad again.
I'm 10 years old and its summer time. I'm grounded for some reason again, although I can quite remember why. I'm bored and its too quite in the house. All I am doing is starring at my very white walls thinking. Thinking it would be okay to ask my mom if I could go out and play. Not to sit in the house. She is always telling me that I'm not active enough. I decided to be daring.. I went downstairs to my mom's room and asked. The thing I did wrong, then thing I miscalculated would be her reaction. I could never seem to get that right. I woke her up from her nap to ask... that was a HUGE mistake. She told me no, and then I went back up to my room. 5 minutes later I could hear the foot stepped pounding down the hall. She came bursting into my room screaming. "HOW DARE YOU WAKE ME UP TO ASK ME TO GO OUTSIDE WHEN YOU KNOW YOU'RE FUCKING GROUNDED!!!". I backed up on to my bed bracing myself for what was going to come next. She had a spatula in her hand and while she was screaming she raised it to hit me. I quickly got in the fetal position; trying to bring my legs and arms as close to my body as possible while protecting my head. Anticipating the impact. She struck me several times, all while I begged her to please stop and saying that I was sorry. I was always sorry... I had huge welts on my thighs for days. I tried telling the school what was going on. Instead of calling CPS, they called my mom. I went home to a very angry mom, two brother that were shocked that I had the balls to say anything, and a lot of yelling. I was an ungrateful piece of shit and I needed to go live with my father if it was so bad living with her. Being abused is being locked in a closet with no food, and being burned with a curling iron. I was simply just properly punished in her eyes. This was the first time I was "kicked out".
I'm 13, everything hurts. All I want to do is cry and I can't seem to face the world. It feels good to get release while I run the scissors across my wrists and cry. This is pain I know I am feeling, this is a pain that is real. Afterwards, I lay in bed. I can't bring myself to go to school.
I'm 15 years old and on the front porch of my childhood home. I'm not allowed to come in. I have a bag of clothes next to me and I'm waiting for my dad to come pick me up. She's screaming, she is always mad about something. I'm trying not to cry because I don't want to get it. She is screaming at me that I am ruining her marriage and that I am causing her unhappiness. This is the first time I remember feeling like I wanted to die. I was a good for nothing piece of shit like she told me I was. I was ungrateful, a brat, and an over eater. No one wanted me around...
I'm 16 years old, it's a school morning. I am sound asleep when all of a sudden I am woken up by my door bursting open, and my lamp being thrown against the wall. My immediate reaction is to scream. I scream so loud my vocal cords hurt and I am shaking I'm so scared. It's my mom. She is mad because I didn't make her coffee for her before I went to bed. She specifically asked me to get it ready for her in the morning, and I told her I would in a little. I completely forgot and went to bed. She is mad because she asked me to do that ONE thing and I forgot. I always forget. Now, she didn't have a pot of coffee to wake up to.
I'm 17 years old. My mom and I aren't getting along. I don't remember what we were fighting about but it was something. I had a school play I was going to be apart of, and she said I could do it any more. I agreed with her, but knowing that I was going to disobey her. She saw that I had a bigger bag than normal and my curling iron in my hand. I don't remember the escalation, but she had told me to put the curling iron back in the house and I said no. She went to go snatch it out of my hand, while doing so poured her coffee halfway down my body and hit me in the head with the curling iron 3 times. I of course stayed home from school, but she said I wouldn't go to school again. She would withhold me from going because school was a privilege. I told her she couldn't keep it from me. A week later... I moved out for the first time. That was the first time in a long time I felt free.
I'm 26 years old. My mom and I are fighting because I won't watch her difficult misbehaved dogs while her and my stepdad make a trip down to Florida. One they can't afford. She asked me to watch them, but it was a redundant question. I lived with them and didn't pay rent. I OWED it to them do it. If I chose not to, I would have to pay rent so they could board the dogs for their trip. Either way I was forced into an uncomfortable situation. So I decided that I was going to move out. This made my mom and stepdad VERY unhappy. My last night there, I was corned in the upstairs hallway by her. I had just gotten home, and she came stomping upstairs. She corned me so I could leave, that I was forced to hear what she had to say. She had her finger pointed at me and she was talking through her teeth. I don't remember what was said to me exactly but it was something along the lines of being an ungrateful bitch. I was terrified that she was going to hit me. When she was done yelling at me, I went in my room and cried hysterically. I knew I needed to get out and never come back. The next day I moved out. And guess what.... they found someone to watch the dogs without my help and money.
I'm 26 years old, in my very own apartment. I think I am in love but with a man who has some problems. He drinks, a lot. And he is crazy possessive and jealous. He has been accusing me of sleeping with all my male friends, or wanting to. He tells me that he doesn't like big girls and that I need to lose weight. He follows me EVERYWHERE... I just need to get away. He was drinking again, and I needed some space to think. So I decided to take a shower. I forgot to lock the door and here he comes in the shower while I'm washing my hair. He thinks its cute, but he's invading my space. I don't get mad or upset, because I don't want him to freak out. I would like a peaceful night of sleep. Some time later, we are having a good night and we are both having a drink. I have to use the bathroom and he thought it would be cute to say lets go together. I immediately get weirded out because he keeps doing stuff like this. I tell him no as calmly as possibly. luckily he just laughs it off and it doesn't turn into an escalated matter. I can't seem to shake him. Him following me or wanting to be around me. He texts me several times a day while I'm at work. If I don't answer, then he gets angry. If he gets angry, He drinks. And then its a shit show when I get home. I can't seem to shake him. I need to get out and I need to get away. I have my friend fake an emergency so I can get out and get away. I worry that he will follow. I feel trapped....
There are times when she breaks down. There are moments in which she falls apart. These are the moments in time where her smile becomes an expression of strength but you'll never know her battles because she goes to war in silence.
My family is full of addicts. I was so naive to think because of the influences I have had I would never become one. Boy was I wrong... I don't have a singular habit that I am addicted to. I have multiple bad habits to fill the need of my addiction. I'm addicted to a feeling. My name is Brittany and I am addicted to feeling happy. I have had a taste of true happiness. You know the kind where the sun is shining, there is a good song on the radio, and all you can do is smile. Everything is just right in the world, in that moment. All the bad that weighed you down before is a forgotten memory. However, that feeling is only temporary for me. I don't quite understand though, why the feeling is only temporary for me. The more I try to keep it the feeling around the more reckless I get with my behaviors.
One of my most recent developed reckless behaviors is drinking. Drinking to fit in and seem fun. Drinking to mask the pain. With the first sip of alcohol, the weight of the world flies off of my shoulders. I feel like dancing and singing. It started off drinking more frequently with friends, and then slowly I found myself drinking alone more often than not. When I would drink alone, it wasn't just to feel happy. It was also so I could sleep. So that meant instead of a glass of wine, I drank a large 1.5 liter bottle. Instead of 2-3 beers, I would drink a case. I didn't have a limit. I drank until it was gone.
That same trend continued when I would go out to the bar. I didn't know how to, or didn't want to, stop at one or two drinks. And more often than I am willing to admit... I drove home drunk. In this search of happiness at the bottom of a bottle, because for a brief moment it gave me a glimpse of what I was searching for, I have made many poor choices. I have made a complete ass of myself too many times to count, and I am mortified but my actions when intoxicated. I often make jokes about "drunk Brittany" but deep down inside I hate her and she isn't funny. Just like I hate fat Brittany. You know the big girl who eats whatever she wants when she wants, but has all the fake self confidence in the world.... I think any addiction persona I take on is a sad and pathetic version of me.
I never had a life altering experience from drinking that made me hit rock bottom. I didn't get arrested. I didn't lose my license. I didn't kill anyone. I am currently thanking God for that because I could have easily done all of the above.
I recently took inventory on my life and came to realize that I base a lot of my choices around drinking, hoping for that moment of happiness to come back. I make plans for the weekend based on how hungover I will be the next day. I budget money for booze and every time I go grocery shopping there is at least a bottle of wine in my cart. They truly meant it when you have bariatric surgery not to drink. Do not drink because you will substitute one addiction for another. That is exactly what I did. I used to eat to feel happiness. Honestly, I think everyone can relate to food giving them the feeling of pure joy. However, for me it was killing me. So I changed that. Or so I thought....
I'm getting fatter and my memory is turning to shit. In my early years of drinking I have never experienced black out moments. Now they happen frequently. It's like I know what is happening in the moment itself, but it doesn't convert to long term memory. There have been many times that my memory stops very early and I have no clue how I even got home. I keep wondering how I have gained so much weight when I have pretty much ate the same, and even when I diet. Then I put down a case a of beer or liter of wine.... there was part of the answer there.
I said before I drank to help with my insomnia as well. After awhile it got later and later I was staying up to drink. A few drinks later, or one too many, the "happy" feeling would stop and the pain would wash over me. Recent suicide attempts or self harming have all been when I was intoxicated.
All of these moments have added up in my head recently. The reason behind why I do things, and how they have effected my life. I decided that drinking hasn't given me that "happy" feeling I am looking for in a really long time. I don't believe it truly ever did. It is possible that it heightened whatever feelings I had. Whether they were good or bad. I have decided to live the sober life of a little while. Currently I am 8 days sober and riding the struggle bus all the way to funky town. Nights like tonight I would have a glass of wine and a bad chick flick on the TV. Instead, I have a diet coke and pouring my heart out to anyone willing to read this.
Happiness is a feeling I desperately want to remain in my life more consistently. I need to learn to develop more healthy habits in order to achieve that feeling. Working on feeling accomplished, and work on my self confidence. Moments, feelings and character building that will allow happiness to stay around longer than a brief moment. Slowly I will find my way back there. When I do, I don't ever want to let it go.
I used to feel too much and I used to not feel at all,
Down on my knees I would pray, "someone please catch me if I fall",
Fall to pieces; completely shattered apart,
All fitting together like a mosaic work of art,
My soul I sold for a small temporary piece of mind,
Sex, booze, or pill any swift relief I could find,
At the bottom of the bottles, or in yet another mans touch,
Even in the endless amount of searching it all became too much,
Each continuous moment was a hurricane of emotions,
High and Lows with to many should I stay or should I go's,
Stopping to take a breath, looking deep inside myself to find the answer to my question,
Only to learn life's most valuable lesson...
The feelings I feel so deep are valid and I am enough,
The chaotic life is undeniably worth living even when it's rough .
- Brittany Sergent