Lavender 

I used to think you lavender 

And myself a shade of blue

Because when you came round

You lit me up

And replaced my blue with you 

Lavender was all I craved 

Steadiness, warmth, and calm

When you called out to me

It was your lavender I slipped on 

You waved away my cloudy days

With just a flick of your hand

You steadied all my careless ways 

And helped me understand 

It was okay to be blue, you’d say

After your fourth or fifth beer 

Just don’t get too crazy, babe

You’d remind me with a jeer

I lay with you in your bed at night 

Knowing I wasn’t the only one

Who laid at night with lavender 

True blue, I bit my tongue. 

Days to weeks and weeks to months

And now it has been years 

I’m always blue, and only blue 

Until lavender reappears 

So many times I’ve wondered 

And then I’ve stopped myself 

Was I truly blue when you found me?

Or did you declare me blue yourself?

Was it my state of being 

Or an opening you saw – 

Was I ever something other than blue

Or were you the blue one after all?

That’s the funny thing about time 

And growing past a problem 

You start to see with clarity 

You start to learn to solve them 

If I saw you now, you’d smile that smile

That you saved just for me 

And I know I’d squint and 

For just a moment 

The predator would be me

I loved you once

And I swear some days 

I wish I could turn back time

But I stop myself, remembering

How blue you made my mind 

Because that’s the thing 

That took so long 

For me to understand – 

You were the rough and bellowing sea

And I was the safety of land. 

I thought it was in reverse 

You the savior, I the damned

But when the fog cleared

And the sky beamed down 

I saw it was all lavender in my hands 

The house to ourselves, the captain’s chair 

You called me “Pink” to all your friends

A knowing look, your strut, your sway –

Third Eye Blind’s “Dopamine” on replay

The bad was bad and the good was good

And that’s all I can let it be

In the succession of your blue girls 

I never fell in line

I protested, I fought for myself 

And now color is mine 

I found out what you never wanted me to know

The truth you kept under your thumb

The lavender was always me

It was you who was blue all along 

I ALWAYS KNOW WHERE THE BATHROOM IS

I always know where the bathroom is
In every building that I go
I always know where the bathroom is
Because that is where I’m safe, I know

I always know where the bathroom is
Flushed red chest and wild eyes
I always know where the bathroom is
Where I can pretend I’m not alive

I always know where the bathroom is
Sweat trickling to the cold tile floor
I always know where the bathroom is
Escape just behind the lock of a door

I always know where the bathroom is
Murmured conversation all around
I always know where the bathroom is
The place where I’m allowed to be upside down

I always know where the bathroom is
Hand to the wall, breathe in, breathe out
I always know where the bathroom is
Where my mind is free to shout

I always know where the bathroom is
A concerned friend texting from outside
I always know where the bathroom is
My head pressed between my thighs, “Oh, I’m fine!”

I always know where the bathroom is
You see, that’s where I stay
I always know where the bathroom is
There’s nothing else, game over, no other way.

A Public Apology

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It was brought to my attention the other day that I have been somewhat of a hypocrite, as far as relationships go.

Rewind about five months ago. A classmate (and now friend) of mine was asked if she had any plans to start looking for an apprentice funeral director/embalmer position, and she answered no. She was going to finish school and then see what her boyfriend wanted to do, as far as his career and his location plans were. She looked right at me.

“Don’t judge me.” She said.

I scoffed.

“Too late,” I replied back.

Fast forward. With the same classmate/friend in tow at the Midwinter convention that we attended as a class last week, I found myself saying shades of the same. “I don’t have any plans to look for an apprenticeship right now. I want to really focus on school and then see where my boyfriend is at at that point, because one of us may move if a job opportunity comes up.”

Erika called me right out, and rightfully so.

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WORSTS

**AUTHOR’S NOTE:

I am dating a really wonderful guy who doesn’t let my exorcism of old demons bother him because he is an actual angel sent from heaven. Please don’t be the sort of internet snoop I attempt to be and assume that something is wrong between Tyler & I because I have posted this. This was simply backlogged in my draft posts because I was afraid to share it for some time, but I’m not afraid of upsetting this person anymore, and I’m trying to get on top of dat blog game. It’s actually kinda funny to read this back and think that I ever thought I felt so seriously about this fella in the first place. Bless it.

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1 – Here Comes the Sun

So! In the last month, I have become less bitter spinster and more bitter girlfriend. This is as shocking to you all as it is to me, but I ain’t complaining.

Tyler and I officially met for the first time at a Taco Bell (which is how I firmly and wholeheartedly believe all burgeoning love affairs should begin), but we officially became aware of each other via Facebook. A relationship born via Facebook comments (he was the only smart and agreeable voice of reason in a sea of fools on a news article I stumbled upon), I was instantly captivated by him.

“So there’s this really cute guy on facebook, I think I want to message him.” I remember texting to Whitney. Screencaps were exchanged. Encouragement was given. Officially scorned, jaded, and over it was I, when it came to even considering internet relations – but something told me to just do it. Send a message. See what happens.

Nothing really happened.

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#FIREDUP2k16

So, I was fired from the funeral home.

Again.

One day shy of the one year anniversary of the first time I was fired.

Ahhhh, life. You never, ever, ever fail to keep me on my toes.

I missed class yesterday morning, which never happens. I set my alarm for the wrong time, I mixed up my days, totally goofed – but this meant that I could go into work early, and I was really excited to go into work. I miss work, I hate that school takes me away from work and that I don’t get to be as present as I want to be, as involved as I long to be. I didn’t text Tom and tell him that I was sneaking in a few hours early because I wanted to surprise him. Yesterday was the first day that felt like fall to me, the leaves are starting to change, the air was nice and cool, the sun was bright. I felt fine, I remember thinking that – I feel fine today.  I walked into the funeral home with a vial of shaved citrine in my hand (said to bring success in ones career) and an Elvis magnet, stoked to add them to the rest of the oddities collected on my desk.

I made it as far as the doorway. I didn’t even get to put my bag down.

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Every stumble & each misfire

Oddly enough, I have been surprisingly calm about turning 30 – maybe even a little excited, dare I say? In all honesty, my calmness has been entirely shocking to me. Typically by the time September rolls around, I start to get that metallic, anxious taste at the back of my throat because I start thinking about aging and lost opportunities and all of the societal terrors that are ever so kindly imposed on women. In the week before my birthday, I am at my worst – crying, panicking, and most of all, in an endless cycle of self-loathing and self-criticizing. I have never handled birthdays well, no matter what the age – any mention or reference to aging has always been enough to make me clench my buttcheeks hard enough to suck an entire chair up my ass, legs and all – but somehow, when it comes to this one, I feel cool. Seriously. I feel pretty cool. This tells me that I’m either growing up or about to have an absolute mental breakdown – is there even really a difference between the two?

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BEFORE/AFTER

I have been living with a pain in my neck and shoulders for the past few days that feels like some sort of stress-born entity has planted roots and taken up a permanent residence inside of me, tendrils coiling lovingly around the knobs of my spine. Very matter of factly did it move in, like I had no choice or say in it at all. I never even thought to fight it, never even thought I had the right to. I am and always was bound to be the corporeal home of this being – was always meant to carry this weight.

I lay in my bed and I study the world around me through the tiny screen that is my way out – I compare, I compare, I hate myself, I hate everything about who I am. How did all of these lucky people that I know get to become able, capable, confident? What exactly is it that happened to me to make me so hard on myself? I try to look back on my life and pinpoint it – was it a childhood trauma,  some deep, emotional disturbance? I don’t know. But every day feels like I’m tip-toeing closer to the edge of a cliff.

What happens next? What do I do? Who am I? I don’t know.

Agitated, agitated. I’m happiest alone, but I crave motion, company. Stillness makes me nervous. I don’t feel like myself anymore, I haven’t for years – I constantly think back to the “old me” and wish I could find her again, she was fun, she was free, she wasn’t afraid. Instead I feel restless, old, stuck, uneasy, caged – I can NEVER see the forest for the trees. Summer is hard for me – summer is always hard for me. I want to say that I am not okay, I want to scream it as loud as I can until someone hears me, but I can’t find my voice, and even if I somehow could, what would matter? What would change? Those who want to help me annoy me most. I’m too tired to talk, it takes too much energy to try to make anyone understand that I feel like I’m already gone.

I am aware that time is flying and I can feel it, sticky and hot, as it rushes by and sucks the breath out of me, but somehow I still seem to be exactly where I’ve always been, watching everyone else pass me by.

Always watching.

Jealousy and spite are getting the best of me, I am a bent and bowed creature, labored and wanting. I don’t want to work, I don’t want to fight, I don’t want to do anything at all. I feel dumb, sluggish, my once attractive features warped into a constant ugliness that is all that I can ever see or fixate on. If I could pick myself to death, skin clean from the bones, I would, and with a smile.

I have lost sight, I have lost hope, I am unfocused. I search for answers, I have no answers, there are no damn answers. I hurt and I hurt and I hold it because I can’t bear to share it, can’t stand the feeling of my guts hitting the floor as I pour them out.