i’ll watch as you wither, from six feet away. tell you that’s it’s gonna be all right, because i don’t know what else to say.
because that’s what a good daughter does. isn’t it? sings you a lullaby; and tuck you in tight. so i’ll pay the price. and i’ll do everything i can, to make a broken mind right.
and i’m sure, somehow i will find a way to get through. i will coat your heart in my sugarplum love, and i’ll paint the sky blue.
and the rain will patter down on the leaves. my fretted notes ringing out fuzzy, and weak beneath my frost-kissed fingers. i am down on my knees…
By nature–or, maybe by nurture, I don’t know; but for as long as I can remember anyhow–I’ve been a caretaker, in some way or other. Maybe it was societal pressure; maybe it was simply what I was seeing modelled by my parents, especially my mom. This sense of there being honor in self-sacrifice. In working until you want to collapse, sacrificing your personal happiness for someone else’s. Which there really isn’t; but back then that’s how I saw it.
So I learned to put others before myself, to the extent of causing myself harm. Maybe it was a strange method of self-punishment. Maybe it was just my desperate attempt to prove to other people that I’m worth it; not that that method ever works in the end.
So I learned, as time went on, that if giving other people everything they asked for didn’t make them love me, I must just be a selfish, awful person. (Even though I did nothing wrong.)
So I just worked harder. I worked, at a level some would call insane, especially for an eleven-year-old kid. And yeah, part of it why I’d just casually write 5,000 words a day was because I loved writing, but part of it was because… well, I felt like I had to prove to someone that I deserved their love, by showing them my productivity.
I don’t know if it’s a girl thing, or a young person thing, or an ex-gifted kid thing, or just a human thing in general. But I want to be able to just exist, without feeling like an awful human being for it.
I’ve had a really long, weird journey with this whole pressure to work thing. (Believe me.) To be totally honest, it’s still something I’m dealing with, and will probably continue to be deal with for a really long time. I just want to do things because I want to, or need to for financial reasons–not because if I don’t make enough money off work by the end of the week, or push out enough content, I’m an awful person, and suddenly I feel like all my friends and family are going to abandon me.
Lots of love,