What's Inside Me

It comes on at night.

Emotions swirl inside me, mixing, mingling and poking, and after both kids are asleep I sit on the couch, uncomfortable in my own skin.  I can feel pinhole leaks in the dam that holds me together.  I want to escape myself.

He asks me if I want to watch shows, or have time to myself, I don't know the answer.  I still don't know how to take time for myself when we are both here because after years of expectations, I am still conditioned to know that my time should be for someone else if we are both in the same room.  Faced with the opportunity to do something for myself, I often can't decide what I even want.

The tears come and he comes to me.  He tells me I'm not alone and that I'm safe, and I don't fear the world, but I'm not safe from what's inside me and that feels scarier.

Recently my feelings have been...  unexpected.  Unpredictable.  Irrational.  Some I can embrace, my empath heart makes things shaky sometimes, but others are out of place, sharp and jutting.  I went to see my doctor because I suspect my hormones are to blame, and got a referral to the gynecology department because all of my blood work looks "normal."

Year after year, unexplained symptoms, being told I am "normal" when I do not feel it, or being told that if I lost weight I would be better when I have never been typical, even when I took up a more acceptable amount of space.  Thyroid problems, PCOS, insulin resistance, my endocrine system seems to have been cobbled together from spare parts in some backwoods body shop.  Unexplained and untreatable.  Intracranial hypertension and interstitial cystitis and now these mood swings and nausea and probably perimenopause, and mostly a lot of shrugs from a lot of different doctors.  

I have been bleeding for 10 days, and I know that we are not supposed to talk about that, but how do I not talk about that?  First nothing for two months, and now this leaky faucet of pink and it makes me wonder if I am also leaking hormones that twist my brain and fill me with longing for something I can't quite see, a sadness that's blurred around the edges.

Self-assuredness was not something that came easy for me.  Years of work have gone into this battle, and it isn't over.  Some days I look in the mirror and still see unworthy.  I find that lately it slips behind me like a shadow, and I have to work harder to get it back.  Some days I feel like I walk in a fog that hasn't had the light and warmth to burn off just yet.  

I feel that I'm being given so much grace.  He has my heart and I know he knows, but I wish that right now I was more capable of showing him.  There is the past again, telling me that I should feel guilty for just trying to figure out how to take care of myself for the moment.  There is my marriage, telling me that normal relationship ebbs and flows are me declaring war on the person I would least want to fight with.  There are my faded memories, telling me that I don't deserve this grace.  There is my five-years-ago heart, telling me to be careful or I might slip and make myself unlovable again.

My passion flies around me like feathers caught in the wind, my fingers grasping and brushing but unable to pull them to me.  I want to write, I want to connect, and it feels like it is right there but so far away, and so immense that I can't figure out where to begin.

I sit down to write, and it pours out.  I know I need to make space for this, and I don't know if I am afraid or just tired, but I haven't made myself commit.  I don't know the answers, but I know that on the page is where I need to be.  

I think maybe this is praying, these sparks in my brain, tears turned to thoughts of grace and longing and the things that make me who I am.  This is who I am, right now, right here.  I may not be this in a day, or even in an hour, faces and shapes and emotions morph and change like the shadows of branches blowing in the wind.  This is who I am and it is messy and confusing and full of so many things I can't even begin to describe.  This is who I am, for now, and this is okay.