Thoughts From A Coffee Shop — Thoughts #5



None of it matters.

We talk so loud,

All we want is to be heard, to be listened to,

But it falls on deaf ears.



I want to vanish.

I wonder what it’d be like to disappear, to get up and go somewhere,

To be anywhere but here,

But alas, I have things to do and people to love,

So I remain.



In this body,

In my home,

In my decisions,

By my phone,

Under your thumb,

Under the gun,

Under everything bigger and scarier than me,

Under the sun.




I saw your car today,
Red lights and silver paint,
Of course, it wasn’t you in the driver’s seat,
It was just a stranger and his wife.
I wondered what they were like.
Their hair was grey and their smiles were faint,
Just like yours was.
You’re long gone now, but the memories you left still resound.
I miss you every single day,
Especially in the summer.
I miss the smell of the front porch and the garden.
The walk to the mailbox with your hand in mine,
The laundry hanging out on the line.
It’s weird that it’s all still so easy to remember when it seems that you’ve been gone forever.
Sometimes I turn on the old songs we’d play in the car, and I get lost in the sound of your voice reaching over the music.
I miss the way we’d play the same songs over and over again,
Your fingerprints written on every disc.
I want to have that once again, but you’re still gone.
I miss the safety I found in your home.
It’s gone now, as are you.
The walls have been painted over, the garden torn out,
I want to scream, but it won’t bring you back now.

Now I’m staring at them,
They’re looking at me.
I know that they don’t see what I see.
I see your face as you drive away.
They see a girl who doesn’t know what to say.
Red lights and silver paint,
Tears are streaming down my face.
I don’t know why I feel betrayed, it wasn’t you who drove away.

You’re gone and I’m still here, wondering what you’d think of me if you were here today.

Someplace Safe — Mental Health Post #12

I spent eleven years trying to find my fit.
Eight of those years were spent trying to push my dolphin puzzle piece into a farm scene, and the following three were spent in a mixture of pretending not to care that nobody liked me, and feeling sad that I couldn’t force myself to stick to people who didn’t want to stick to me.
I was skeptical, to say the least, when I was invited to youth group at my current church.
What would be different there than everywhere else I went?
Hundreds of excuses flooded my mind. Of course I couldn’t go, I had to work in the morning, I didn’t know anybody, and to top it all off, I didn’t have a ride.
In the end, I decided to give it a try.
Despite my earlier arguments, I’m glad I did.
I can’t imagine what I looked like as I took a seat in the corner with my jacket on and still zipped up that whole first night, and I tried my best not to make eye contact with anyone.
However, the youth leaders wouldn’t let me get away with that, and they did it so smoothly that at first I didn’t even notice that I knew everyone’s names, and they all knew mine.
You know what I find crazy? I had fun that night, and went home beaming to my mother, and she must’ve asked me if I was okay at least a dozen times before I went to bed.
I was more than okay. I was accepted. I was welcomed. I was absolutely soaring within myself.
Weeks went on, and although I still kept to myself as much as possible, I felt at peace in a place I never imagined I could after years of being rejected in the exact same setting, albeit a different location.
Fast forward a few months,
Youth group was starting up again after a break (I can’t recall if it was our summer or winter break now),
All new youth, and new leaders were taking over, there was nothing familiar anymore.
The group I had come to know and love was almost entirely washed away by the tides of age, save for a few stragglers like myself.
I was terrified that the entire year would be a disaster.
God could not possibly give me more than one happy season where I fit in, it just didn’t make sense. I’d had my run of feeling like I finally fit somewhere and it was inevitable, I was going to be the outcast again because those were the cards I was dealt. I was not by any definition a likeable person, I’d always known that about myself and had at least sorta accepted it.
Opportunities arose for me to attend youth camp, and again, I made excuses as to why I couldn’t go.
Hours before I left, I was pacing the living room floor, tears streaming down my cheeks,
My mom insisted over and over again, “You don’t have to go if you don’t want to”,
Despite her words, I felt like I had to because I had already told everyone I was going, and I try my best to keep my word.
It would be fair to say that youth camp changed my life, not just because God did something amazing by healing me physically, but because He showed me that last year’s comfort was not entirely because of the people, it was because of the principles they held about living like Jesus, and not judging others, and loving one another as you love yourself. Those principles seem to run through my church as a whole, but especially through my youth group.
The group from that first year definitely was amazing, I learned a lot from those youth leaders, and I got to know some truly incredible people, but underneath the great people I met that year, God’s love was reflected from those people into my life, and that didn’t change when the youth group changed, because the new youth, and new leaders still carried the same values, and they still radiated the same qualities, and outside all of that, they were lovely individuals.
Of course, I still had days where I didn’t feel like anybody wanted me around, and sometimes I still retreated into my shell, but that had more to do with me than it did with them. After all of my searching, and three years of feeling bitter, I found a place where — more times than not — I felt safe, and welcome, and loved.

Don’t Ask Me How I’m Doing — Mental Health Post #11

Look, I get it, it’s the “normal” thing to do but if you ask me how I’m doing, I’m going to come out with the truth.
I may very well be a mess,
Maybe I’m on my way to becoming an emotional wreck,
I might even be crumbling into a million little pieces without a clue how to fix it.

And you might still expect me to say I’m okay, but I’m not okay so why should I have to say I am?

If that makes you uncomfortable, I’m sorry. But as hard as I try, I’ll never understand this urge we have to outright lie to the people who claim to care about us. We shouldn’t have to wear poker faces everyday of our lives just because we’re human beings and we experience struggles!
Why do we as a human race, but especially those of us living with mental health struggles, feel the need to say we’re doing great, or that we’re feeling fine, when all we want is to curl up in our beds and die?

What is fine but the tip of a pen?

“I’m fine.” That’s what everyone says.
Well, I’m done with the lies.
I’m not fine, and I’m not okay, and I’m certainly not having the time of my life, so why should I act that way?
Bottom line: don’t ask me how I’m doing if you don’t want to know.