I wanted to be a writer growing up. I also wanted to be a doctor of some kind – specialize in herbs and the kind of folksy medicine that helped me through the worst of my injuries as a child. Some parts wanted to be an ice skater or a gymnast or a dancer too.
We fell in love with science. Words were an escape – reading and learning couldn’t be taken away from us – but science was like cooking and baking; full of questions, answers, and investigating.
But then all of these blocks got in the way. Random people who were once friendly turned against me. People I thought were friends humiliated me. Instead of helping, teachers made everything more difficult. Even when I excelled and did everything correct, I still “failed” and got punished. When I made mistakes or gave up, I was told that it’s ok because I am a failure. Trying again or trying harder wouldn’t change the outcome so giving up or giving in was good. Better not to try at all.
And so my life went until I went to college. There I found a different part of myself. One that enjoyed challenges and classes, but not people and socializing. The triggers in my head; the nightly phone calls home; the nightmares and ugly thoughts circling inside me; the lost time scared me. Instead, I gave in to the pressure and finished at a local state college with high school “friends” to offer “support” and “help” when I needed it. Relatives also lived close by and offered “escapes” too. But the part that opened up refused to close again.
The alter voices and the monster voices fought inside my head and spoke through our mouth. Everyone on campus thought I was crazy. I encouraged this because I didn’t want friends. Friends were people who might try to stop me from my (at the time) main purpose: do well; learn; live as much as possible on my terms until I died.
But I didn’t die. Not sure, but maybe the counseling center had something to do with that. And maybe someone inside (one or more alters) refused to let the monsters win.
Letters got lost in the mail. Phone calls never received or returned; or answered by family. Networking opportunities lost. All because the organ donor and sperm donor and blood sibling (mom, dad, younger brother to those unaware of my classification system) would hack my cell phone and email to get my contacts and then proceed to trash me or harass potential clients/employers on my behalf. And when that wasn’t enough, they enlisted their relatives and connections to assist them. Or lie and block my ability to get resources that would allow me to take advantage of opportunities around me.
Twelve years later
I am still alive. We are still alive. Every year we live past 21, we celebrate with joy. Because none of us were meant to live past 21.
I am a professional writer. This blog is one avenue; everyone in the system helps make the blog and website work. My day job is the other one.
The healers in me (alters who want to pursue a career in healing arts – not medicine) are working with a graduate school program for Traditional Chinese Medicine.
Either way, we did not stop. We did not give in. We did not give up. We did not fail. We stopped. We changed our mind. We went in a different direction for a time. We stopped again. We changed our mind again. We pursued and achieved our goals.