Becoming Lilly

Hello everyone. You can call me Lilly. It’s not my real name. I chose it as a pen name. It took me a while to try and figure out what name I would represent as myself in my online diary. I chose Lilly because when I think of my happiest memories growing up, they usually involve enjoying the woods where I lived. Tiger lillies grew in abundance in the hot summer months. They were like a magical invasion, accompanied by glittering fireflies. Thinking of it sometimes makes my childhood seem like a fairytale.

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It’s arrogant to think anyone would read this. I know that. The writing is confessing true experiences. I’m not sure who would want to read someone stranger’s blubbering truths. The kind that when you share they change forever how people see you. My experiences with this has mostly been heartbreaking, yet I still crave to be heard. To be understood. Is that why I am telling you my real name isn’t Lilly? Maybe it’s strange to admit that right away. It would probably be more normal to assume a fake identity and pretend it was real. That my name really was Lilly, and say nothing of it ever. I suppose part of me feels like the Wizard of Oz. I have spent years hoping someone would pull away the curtain. So I could be freed. Then again, when people pull back the curtain – there’s no guarantee they will like what they see.

WizardBallon

I am just not certain if this is defining of my own nature, or an emotional habitual response to my experiences. I doubt that for many qualities within myself. Am I defined by who I really am, or by what happened to me. Part of me has also felt like Dorothy lately, especially since recent events felt like a tornado that picked me up and flung me somewhere strange and unknown. I’ve had distinct men come in and out of my life. Walking beside me, seeking their own healing. It doesn’t help that I have a dog that looks just like toto. Maybe I’ll get a pair of silver slippers (or red). It’s strange, but identifying myself with characters helps me feel more ok with who I am. Seeing similarities in them helps me feel more normal. If someone would write this person, than the qualities they possess can’t be so terrible – right? Part of me hopes I am like a character from a book. Just starting their journey towards some greater revelation. Or perhaps a character who isn’t fully understood, like Elphaba. About to have my victorious moment of breaking my chains. Maybe I set myself up for disappointment.

I just started therapy for the first time. I thought about going to therapy for many years. I wanted to go desperately. It felt unobtainable, to be one of those people who can sit on a nice couch and be guided towards becoming a better person. Not just for economic reasons. Yet, I would imagine the conversations I had with my therapist. It would be something that comforted me in my low moments. I clung to a lot of weird hopes like that. In middle school it usually involved boys. In high school it was not much different, but also involved doing something with my life. In college it evolved into just being able to live like a normal person. After college: to belong somewhere. Now that I’m in therapy, I am not sure what hope to cling to or even if I should. Perhaps that is why I am writing this blog. I am hoping that I will be heard, but it’s low commitment. Something easy to put down if not right.

I used to imagine how I would tell my therapist what happened to me as a child. I worried what they would think of me when I said it. Would they think I was evil? A sociopath? Someone unfix-able? I have told people in the past. In high school I told friends, wanting to understood (That was a mistake). In college I confessed it to a baptist church, hoping that I would be forgiven and accepted (another mistake). After college it leaked out into an online community, who eventually used it to hurt me greatly (I think you’re starting to see a pattern). So why would I imagine telling my therapist? Why am I starting this anonymous blog?

I don’t know, you tell me. Maybe old habits die hard. Or maybe I just want to cling to the idea that human beings can overcome their pain. I know I feel it every day. It’s sometimes unbearable. The weight of it all drags me towards the center of the earth. It’s not just that I was molested, or that I feel lesser; dirty. It’s the experiences of trying to move past this, and feeling knocked back into the mud. Because getting past the sadness isn’t the first step. Forgetting isn’t the quick solution. There are other side effects like anger or Cognitive Distortion. People know you’re not right. You’re not like everyone else. You take things to such extremes. You use terms like “always” or “never”. You seem to always be the victim in everything, and so sensitive. There’s something broken. I’ve faced a lot of rejection because of that. I know it’s not my fault for not being more normal (I just described various forms of Cognitive Distortion btw). Even so, even knowing that – it still hurts. I struggle to forgive myself for not being someone better. For not being someone worth loving. I sometimes crave death, so I wouldn’t have to feel this anymore. That people wouldn’t have to deal with me, and be so let down by who I am. The cruelest part is when there is a good day. I think I am finally about to move forward. Towards that better ending like in the stories I love. Then, I sleep. I dream about it again. I wake up feeling overwhelming pain. I know it’s hard to understand. I’ve been lucky enough in the past to have some people who endured me long enough so that I survived the moments I was closest towards that fatal error known as suicide. Even so, most of these people fall away in time. I am …. too broken. Still, I was fortunate that they would listen when they did. So I could unravel some of the hurt. It gets repetitive sometimes, though. I sometimes feel like a broken record. Like a child repeating a word trying desperately to understand it. For a long time I really yearned for someone to love me dearly, seek to heal me with their tenderness. I realize that this is not how reality works.

In 4 months I will be moving to LA. I start graduate school. It’s a new start for me. I haven’t decided yet if I will change my name when I do go. I want to be a different person than the one I am. Someone unbroken. I have severe social anxiety however. The first step will be going outside my door more than once a week. It’s better than before. In the months prior to my therapy… I would go out once every few months, maybe. I want to be more than this. That is why I started Therapy the moment I was given the opportunity to have it. That is why I brave my worst fear each week to see my therapist. I finally had my chance, the one I long waited for. Someone to guide me towards healing. I think this week I will do more than just see her. I think tomorrow I will go biking. I thought about it today. I stood at my door and felt the wind in my face, the sun on my skin. I was frozen with fear. It was overwhelming. But, I opened the door. Normally I’m too scared to even be in plain sight of others. I got to smell the spring air. Today, I looked outside.

Tomorrow I think I will actually go for a walk.

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