Learning To Love You More




Assignment #14
Write your life story in less than a day.

New York, New York USA



My story-
I was a 17 year old high school drop-out and I liked this because I thought I was cooler than all my friends. I had a job, older friends, a fake ID, and freedom and money of my own to do with what I chose. I was also beautiful and had a string of guys proceeding around me all the time. For a time, I thought the world was my oyster, and it was. With my older friends, I could drink smoke do coke, and get into all the coolest bars downtown I wanted, open bars were abundant, and I was drunk every night. Dancing to hip hop, biggie, the pharcyde, jay z, q tip and others, club opaline on 6th st and ave a was my favorite, and we would go there every Thursday night for open bar, until they shut it down some years later. Or some months. We would also go to this club called happy endings on delancey, which used to be a massage parlor, but was now a bar and cool place for dancing- I think they had an open bar every Tuesday. My friends were plentiful, my life was plentiful, and the booze I was drinking were plentiful. I didn't realize, at that tender age (though I was already 'grown.' No one could tell me anything) How dangerous or troublesome the path I was heading down would turn out to be. Everything just seemed like fun. But I was a drunk, 17 year old, high school drop-out, what could my prospects really be?
Well, I found out the summer of 2002 when we all got fired from triple 5 soul. I had lost my family, my support group, my second home. I had slept in the store, I had hooked up in the store- I had even vomited in the store. This was my home. The smell of nag champa incense burning became as familiar as the smell of plain air to me. My friends were scattered across the city like snow, and I didn't know what to do with myself. We tried to keep hanging out, but it just wasn't the same. Besides, me and this guy Jef, who had had a thing, were feuding. He had chosen this other girl ( a slut, in my thinking. I was still a virgin) over me and I could not forgive that. Probably my first puppy love/ heartbreak was with Jef. I remember how my heart used to beat quicker every time he was around. We would make out in the back room a lot when no one else was around. I remember one time he asked me if I loved him and I said, 'no,' because I didn't know what else to say and felt awkward. I think I did love him, at that point in time, but didn't really know what love is. Or that it comes so infrequently. I was so young. Anyway, nowadays I see him sometimes at the aa meeting that we both attend, but that is another, later story.
To continue on with my 17 year old self, I was lost and confused, but maybe did not know it, or to what extent it would play in my later years. These were my formative years, and I have been forever, (so far) influenced by them, in my tastes in music, clothes, people, and so on. What I find distasteful now is a direct result of who I was as a teenager growing up in that big city, at that specific time, being the queen of downtown (or so it seemed to me), and feeling like nothing could touch me. Invincible. I used to make out with random people a lot. At the bar happy endings one time, this guy Fedore Oases, who was like 27 and a Dj, (and was mortified later when he found out I was 17) pulled me across the bar, into this corner, and started making out with me. He was hot so I didn't stop it, but he had like unzipped my jeans and everything, and I didn't even notice because I was so drunk. Other people were around and watching sort of, but not really. My friends (male and female) had to wait for me to stop making out and then we left.
I got into a cab with Rena, who also went to my old high school, and saw the cab driver, a hot russian guy with long hair (so my type back then), so we sat in the front seat. I began making out with him, the whole works, but only really after Rena left. Anyway, this was a normal ocurrence in my life then, and the fact that everybody at work knew the next day that I had made out with a cab driver after making out with someone else did not embarass me in the least. I had had friends of friends who had done much worse, like this girl Bea who one time, couldn't pay the cab fare, so let the cab driver eat her out. And he was supposedly really nasty. This is from my friend Emma (who goes to aa now too) and was a total pothead in a really good, easy going way. They were always smoking in the back, sometimes I would join in. Pot really wasn't my thing that much back then, because I didn't like to eat that much. I needed to be skinny to maintain everything that was going on. It made sense at the time. When I gained weight, people would begin to call me fat (guys mostly), so I woul starve myself or start vomiting again. I knew I had a problem. I was self aware. I was diagnosed with bulimia back when I was like 14, 15, but I thought since I wasn't as bad now as I was then, that there wasn't that much of a problem. Besides, this is how I coped, and seemed the least of my problems.
When I got fired from triple 5, I cried and did not know what to do. That night, I went out with some of my wilder (read sluttier) friends from high school and I met the person who would be my first love (but now he's dating Ligh), my friend Ligh introduced us. After that it was off to the races. We would see eachother everyday just to be able to breathe the same air. It was so romantical. Everything else in my life sucked (I had no job, no school, no prospects, no family to support me) but I thought I was the luckiest girl in the world, because we were falling in love, and I was the most special, beautiful person there was, according to him. He left for poland for a month while we first started dating, and I remember, I couldn't cope, so I went over to this kid Az's house, who was a dealer, and did coke all night, and talked and thought I was saying the most interesting things (but he didn't seem to think so too, ha. Coke is the worst drug for your social life). And then he touched my boob. And I was offended, but I kept asking for more, kept doing more, and then it was light outside, so I went home, but I couldn't fall asleep even after taking the two xanax he gave me, and I was freaking out, I had never felt this bad, and I called Christopher in poland even though it was like 7am there and it made me feel a little bit better. After that I stopped doing coke so much.
I didn't fall asleep until 2pm that day. Around that time I also developed the habit of insomnia, which actually started when I was around 15, but now intensified. I wouldn't go to sleep until around 9am, I would go food shopping at the all night supermarket Jubilee, nearby; and I would party til late, watch tv for hours until it got light out, and repeat. I think my neighborhood freaked me out. One time there was this rapist in the building so we had to get 24 hr security. Also one time this guy started following me home on my way back from the subway so I had to ask this older college guys to walk with him. He was nice, and I made it home ok, but there were some close calls. One time when I was 14 and coming home from my friend Sandy's house at 9pm (late, for a 14 year old) it started snowing, and on my way walking up the hill to my apartment building, this man lunged at me and tried to attack me. I started running and he ran after me and eventually he stopped. I made it inside and home. I didn't tell my mom what happened because I think she was sleeping. I don't think she would have cared that much anyway. Sometimes when I was out with my friends and it was like 2 in the morning, I would call home and ask her to pay for a cab for me to get home and she would say no, take the subway. And I was like 15, 16 years old. I guess this contributed to making me feel so very grown up.
I lost my mom when I was around 14. Not physically, but emotionally and spiritually she was not there, and she had never been very emotional in the first place. She started taking these sleeping pills that her friend Loretta, a former army doctor (and total creep) had given her, so she could try to fall asleep and I think she was addicted to them. Also, she kept a huge jug of white zinfandel in the fridge at all times, which I would chug before I went out, sometimes in the morning, when I had to go to this new school they were trying to send me to, which I hated.We would fight a lot, and intensely too, but her mind was so warped at that time that she was convinced that I was trying to kill her, she was afraid of her own daughter, and she told her friend Loretta, the army doctor, and they both tried to get me sent to a group home for troubled youth, and if not that then a boot camp, like you see on Jerry Springer or Jenny Jones or some shit. I had to actually go in and convince the lady at ACS, that I wasn't crazy and my mom was an alcoholic. She believed me, thankfully. I was really good at convincing people of things in those days, like that I would reform my ways and they should give me a second chance. For some reason, people liked me back then. Now, not so much. But that is a different and later story too.
My dad sort of strolled in and out of my teenage life, he always behaved as if he were there to restore order to the situation, but actually the opposite was true, because any time I allowed myself to listen to him, or take one of his suggestions for my life (like going to boarding school for troubled teens when I was 16) much worse chaos ensued than if the situation had just been left to be resolved on its own. I learned a lot about running away from him, yet the last time I talked to him I was wholeheartedly blamed for this habit. My teenage years were a chaotic and unusual time and I feel like what has become of my adult life so far, is directly influenced by the events that happened then, because now I am either cleaning up the mess from the past, or reenacting old habits, at a detriment to my current 'mature' self. Everything I learned, I learned on my own, from my friends, from the streets, or from the guys who I had shown intimately my soul. Many of these things are now wrong, they were right at the time, but now they are wrong. And I have and have had to, let go of many of the things, people, and memories, which were once dear to me, because they were causing havoc in my life.
Now that I am sober, things are clearer, and life is sweeter, but I have not been spared from being forged in the fire by the experiences of life. When I was 20 I got involved with a cult, sober, and it took me a while to realize it was a cult. But they taught me a lot too, about spirit, about priorities, about trusting God, and about traveling, because that was the first time I had traveled. However, it took me a while to become unindoctrinated by their way of thinking, and my mental sanity suffered. When I was 21, my mom moved away, and I felt all alone. I moved in with a much older boyfriend that I had at the time, so that I could feel security. He told me what to do all the time, I had no friends anymore because we lived in queens, and he berated me for that and for being fat, and thank God I eventually broke off that relationship when he began criticizing me for being sober.
At that time in my life, everybody was telling me what to do and I had no voice of my own. I didn't think I had the right to have a voice of my own. Even my therapist and my aa sponsor would berate me and tell me what to do. I wanted people to control me back then, because I felt so out of control, and I had no mother, and no people to depend on wholeheartedly. I was sober almost a year when I broke free of all this. I took the bus to Arizona and I was free. At 22, I was able to have a job that was one I liked, full of adventure, and traveling and helping people and being part of a team. It wasn't all smooth sailing, but I was able to be me, to express my ideas, and to be somebody. And not be controlled and docile. This set off a long series of events of traveling, working for americorps, being myself, and being part of groups, and most importantly being of service, which has contributed to my sobriety tremendously. No human being controls me to this day, and I believe in a power greater than myself who is restoring me to sanity, who is rectifying the dysfunction and chaos of my youth, in order for me to grow straight and tall into the young woman that he would have me be.
At 23, I went to europe, in search of a wider view. I walked across spain with almost no money, almost starved, was abandoned, ridiculed, impregnated, and abused, yet I was taken care of despite all these things, and I survived. I arrived home to ny for the first time in a year and a half to a pretty diffuse and chilly reception. Many of my friends were away or had changed, my dad was a total asshole and gave me an ultimatum to be out of his house in one week. This is the reason I moved to the bronx. At that point I had very little money, almost no food, no friends, no family to count on, and this is when I got sick. And I was very very sick. This was the scariest thing that had ever happened to me in my life, and I almost died. Nobody believed me how sick I was because there was no diagnosis. Just as the guy who impregnated me did not believe I was pregnant until I had a miscarriage. This was the most suffering I had ever known, as I was completely alone. At that point my german grandmother, Oma, took me in, and I was made to be ok. Things were slowly restored from that point and now they are better and better. After being sick I had a new appreciation for life and was happy to have every day to be alive in and experience. Things are slowly getting better, now at 24. I am having to let go of a lot of things I thought were true, and unchangeable.
My inner world is changing. Two days ago I found out that Christopher, my first love, and Ligh, the person who introduced us, were dating. This was devastating to my inner world as I had always put both of them on a pedestal, the shining golden past untouched and unshakable. But now this has changed, this new bit of information being like cognitive dissonance. I can no longer think of both of them in a clear light. Instead they are my enemies, and sick. I loved both of them at some point but I do not want anything to do with them now. Moving on from that after having built an entire inner world mythology of the golden, untouched teenage years, in which I ruled as queen is very hard, because that whole mental construction has to be shattered. And something (the truth?) Has got to be put in its place anew.
So that is what I am dealing with now. Things seem to be clearing up. Old crap is coming out, and releasing. I am freer. Freer to be myself as I am now, without worrying about who I was in my past, or who from my past might see me and disapprove of the incongruous image. Like I want to go to this school and learn farming and to meditate, and some people that I used to be friends with might seriously judge that. But why should I care? They are all out getting drunk and fucked up and hooking up with people's ex boyfriends and that is not a lifestyle that I respect. So why should I care? Therefore, I am letting go of the fear of being judged by people from my past, and the fear of being judged in general. It's great. I feel like when I was 15, minus all the getting fucked up and fucking up- I still do make mistakes, but I am aware of them now, and rely on a Higher Power to help me change and lead me to better things. So things are good. Internally I cannot complain. Because I feel progress, and where there is progress you know something good is happening- even if it takes feeling pain to set that progress in motion. So that is it. The end.