When I first started my period, I was nine years old. It disappeared for months after that first time, and in all the years following, I can’t ever accurately tell you what day I will actually be on it. Since I started puberty, I have suffered with moderately severe depression and severe anxiety, as well as more body hair and back acne (aka bacne) — the latter two having brutally impacted my self-esteem and body image.
Since March 2020, it sort of seems like the world has somehow shifted — more bad news pouring out of everyone’s mouths as the days creep by. For months, every phone call my family would get was about one loss or another, deaths, illnesses, people we know slipping away from this world. The ever-present fear of losing more people, ones in my family, and by family I don’t mean just my parents, is one always promising to engulf me, but at the same time filling me with such toxic numbness.
With your back against the plush chair and your legs crossed beneath you, the soft murmurs from the other students in the library, and a gentle noise in the background, you finally open up to the first page of that book. Finally. Your break times and lunchtimes are usually spent the same way: holed up in the library, devouring book after book.
[this is a synopsis from an article I wrote for Medium.]
During the early days of my relationship with J, I was still in this haze of ‘pinch-me-I’m-dreaming’ because being treated with so much love, acceptance and wholesome kindness felt so unreal to me. I didn’t know what to do with all the love, all the happiness unfurling inside of me like the petals of a blossoming flower, finally in bloom. I’d been so used to being treated like dirt, maybe because I sought after it, that it made me feel hesitant when I no longer had to deal with it anymore.