“Why are you worried about dying? You should be worried about living.”
Once upon a time, I agreed – I thought life was not worth living, because of the chronic struggle this ‘entity’ subjected me to. I was fighting universal struggles beyond my control, just for the right to morbidly inhale anguish and pointlessless deeper, sharper, yet more numb with each intake.
I had dark, dangerous monologues about suicide, and an acceptance of pointlessless. I experienced destructive waves of worthlessness and repetitively found myself in situations that were unsafe – because I thought life was no better, and this was simply a continuation of an omnipresent sadistic phenomena.
So, I took all the abuse, got up, and kept going; for this was my foreseen lifelong reality. Not ever did I feel strong for getting up. No; just weary and depleted as I turned around to face life’s next barrage of attacks on me, the bastard’s punching bag.
Then I wisened the fuck up.
My mantra for years, has been ‘C’est la guerre’, which translates to ‘That’s war’. Despite rejecting everything I said above, this mantra will not change.
Let me tell you why.
Despite preaching anti-victim mentality, I realise the truest expression of this deep-seated disease, was my outlook on myself. Life was undeniably hard, and seemingly unfair – due to a ongoing succession of painful, physically and psychologically damaging events. I can’t recall if I’ve ever outlined on this page, what I’ve been through.
If I had to now, I’d acknowledge just how many of those events could have been avoided if I’d been more responsible, respected myself more, or cared about my well-being enough to protect my personal space or self.
All, but one.
Oh, how blue skies are and how green allergy-tickling grass can be. It’s so easy – so comfortable – to blame everyone else but yourself for all the things that have happened to you.
I am not, in any way, trying to imply that everything that’s happened to you is your fault.
I’m trying to say that there is more than the ‘unfair universe’ at play, and blaming solely Life for your woes is self-destructive – this mentality will breed more of the same. The longer you believe you have no control, the longer you’ll be a victim of your own mentality too.
What’s so wrong with breaking down an event, identifying your decisions, your mentalities, and those of others?
It’s okay to say, I let this happen to me because I had no self-respect, and chose not to hurt the other person – because I didn’t believe it was okay to fight for myself at the expense of someone else. In fact, at times, I didn’t even know that I could fight for myself. Fight, even at all. I didn’t see how I was being manipulated. I didn’t understand ‘coercion’. I’m so used to hearing, “Baby, don’t be like that”, and feeling guilty – actually feeling remorseful because I’m disappointing someone else. I felt I had to please, and it took a long time to realise how much I let myself be hurt because of how inferior I believed I was to everyone else; emotionally, physically. I feared repercussions of abandonment and insignificance more than I considered my own well-being. I got hurt because I made the bad decisions. I made the errors of judgment. I actually had a lot to do with how I thought the universe was treating me.
In fact, it had more to do with how I was treating myself.
And that’s okay, in restrospect. I was unequipped with the appropriate tools. Not all are born into families that prioritise individuality and self-respect. Some spend their formative years watching their brothers and sisters cower or their mothers serve. Others cower themselves. Some are taught that love is earned, and not a given, and so believe that they must sacrifice themselves to be loved. Some are taught subservience. Some are beaten. Some are abandoned and spend their lives trying to belong with the wrong people, by doing what they think others want, without considering themselves. Some. Some. Some.
I get to use this understanding of past mentalities and insecurities to be stronger – for myself. I get to say no. I get to protect my bubble. I get to be unashamedly uninterested in socialising, friendship, advances, even conversation.
Sometimes, we are victims of circumstance. Other times, we’re victims of ourselves.
We neglect ourselves. We neglect consequences. We neglect vigilance.
There’s one other phrase that’ll stick with me – “Born and bred”.
Breed better, stronger, healthier. Lessons don’t have to be learnt the hard way, if tools are provided.