If I Only Had a Name


It takes a lot of work to be me. I fight myself daily; the knee-jerk reaction to pick up and run. To not settle for who I was raised to be, but to be better.
I read of all that I am meant to be or could have been, and I fight it because I want more than that. I want more than a scary label or diagnosis. I don’t want people to see the words stapled to my forehead and their first response is to run; because kids like us grow up to be the scary adults people shy away from.

Sometimes the only way to move on and learn to survive with a mental illness is to move on from the past and let it all go.
I want the truth. The clarity that’s buried in a lifelong battle with chaos. True attachments, not shallow strings I can cut at any moment. I don’t want a pair of scissors in my hand as backup for when things get tough. I don’t want to be able to cut ties because things got bumpy along the way.

I don’t want Shame either. This is me, good or bad; I am me. I don’t want to be able to cut ties with myself either.
I’m scared. Scared of what a deeper attachment looks like. When I close my eyes I imagine a staircase. At the top is trust, calm, truth, and protection. I see the people in my life climbing this staircase, some have backed out; breathless, and some never even bothered to start. Others are the ones that caused a need for stairs to begin with.

Others are the ones that caused a need for stairs to begin with.

Then there is me, watching and waiting. What happens if someone makes it to the top? Am I then free? Will I fall from the top? Will I be safe?

Safe. What is “safe”? Safe from what exactly? Hurt, rejection, abandonment, abuse? Is that which scares me most become the pull that lures monsters to my table? Or am I the monster?

Regardless, there is hope. I may be a RADs kid but it won’t define me; I define me.

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