I’ve spent longer watching myself smile in the mirror than I’ve spent laughing with friends.
Has your mother accused you of scratching yourself because of the stretch marks on your breasts?
To the women who wipe it away with alcohol. I understand. I’m here if you need me.
Don’t qualify your statements when you speak. You’ve a right to be heard. Have something worth saying. I want to hear it.
To the women I’ve let down. I’m sorry. Tell me please, so I can get better.
Who fall in love with the cashier at Dunkin’ Donuts because he has a sexy voice and he kept my extra penny.
I’ve never seen a healthy relationship. What would I expect from my own?
Who have tried to turn over one-sided mattresses by themselves.
Who have hair on their bellies longer than the hair on their legs.
Who have used the same pair of panties, with a different pad the next day.
If you can’t eat goldfish without eating the whole bag.
Welcome. I have snacks.
Who have been the victims of sexual assault.
Domestic violence rates are nearly one in three.
Do you know three women?
You don’t have to move on with your life if you don’t want to.
If you’ve got in your car and never left.
Sing all the words to Dylan’s “It Ain’t Me Babe” if you haven’t had a hair cut in a year and a half. Light a big yankee candle, turn off the lights, put your crystal necklaces in a semi-circle and pray to the gods that Robin McKinley will write a sequel to “Sunshine.”
If you’ve never sent anyone a nude photo, you don’t have to be beautiful to be human. I hate my feet too. The only thing yoga helps with is passing gas. My thighs certainly aren’t thinner.
I’ve over-thought a two-second conversation because it was the last time I’ve spoken with anyone all day. My socks never match either. I like that it drives other people nuts.
To those who wear the blood of a crushed mosquito on their skin like war paint. Come hike with me.
To the woman who can’t find an entry-level job that pays a living wage and has snaggle tooths.
You are good enough.
Who read romance novels into the morning to self-sabotage their big day.
To the women who won’t give up control.
To the women who are actually able to tell their accidental, fingering-on-the-couch date that, no they haven’t found the clitoris.
Can you tell me how you did it?
Who have scrapes from going skinny-dipping in the rocky Pacific at midnight in thirty-degree weather. Don’t ever start showering every day.
Who have to remind themselves that friends can have other friends, and they won’t leave you.
To the women who have gone to bookstores so they can tell this day from the last.
To the women who have changed in the backseat of the car because you needed to. I bet you can also take off your bra without removing your shirt.
To the women who wait for a text.
Who don’t want to be needy.
Who try to call out sexism.
Who have to live with someone they don’t love.
Jason Momoa is in your google images search history.
If you don’t have anyone to talk to, talk to me.
To the women who have cried for no reason at all and can’t stop themselves, and get mad at yourself because really, you’re old enough, what is wrong with you, why can’t you do anything right?
To my quiet women, who can’t tell someone how they feel. Try listening to Cat Stevens.
To the women who have stood up to their mothers. Did you hands shake too?
Can you tell a guy to shut up? Have you figured out how to be interested in his hobbies?
To the women up north who wear xtratufs, toting shotguns and dead moose. You’re heroes. Tell your Alaskan sons to stop raping women.
To my aunt who took me in when I hadn’t lived outside a village in too long and I was weird.
To the woman who was nice to me in Sitka. Who didn’t need to be. Who talked to me like I mattered. You don’t know how much I wish I could be friends with you.
To my sister who didn’t have that affair. I will never judge you for your sexuality or promiscuity. I will be there if you leave him. I will send you secret condoms.
To my mother who tries so hard.
To Kelly who doesn’t see how wonderful she is. You are beautiful in and of yourself. If you find someone to love you, great. If you don’t, you will always be the best of humanity.
I wish I knew all the women I accidentally hurt, who think about me as often as I think of the high-school girls who hurt my feelings. I want to fix it.
To the women who have picked at the dirt stuck at the corner of their toenails, who aren’t sure if they can make it on their own, who look down when they walk, who don’t laugh too loud because they’re not sure they have a right to be alive, who are trapped, who are scared, who are destined for greatness, who have a well-worn t-shirt of a college bar logo and a mug of beer.
You are my favorite.
You will be better than your mother, because someone loves you. I love you.
I love you as you are. I love you. I mean it.
I love you. I love you. I love you. Stop hurting the people I love.
i will post something better, and better written tomorrow. this is all i can do for today.
Heard in the Hallway
I’m not in rural Alaska anymore.
I won’t have to hear abuse happen and be powerless and guilty.
But I came home.
And he hits the dogs.
Not in a, I’m venting my anger,
But in a, you’re not behaving properly way.
And I want to go away.
But he’s old, and hopefully dying.
And I don’t want to deal with it.
Or make my mother deal with her husband.
He called me a minefield.
I keep thinking,
He’s the wrong one to practice this on.
I can’t disentangle whether it was him, or it was an old hurt
That I’m just deciding to feel today.
I flashed back to all the times I would be excited, or mad, or really happy.
And my sister would be there to make fun of me,
So that I never showed how I was feeling,
No one would notice and no one would hurt me.
She would flick her thumbnail over her ring finger and tsk,
God, what is wrong with you.
He was teasing my mood in a casual way.
I lost it, and started crying. Why was I crying?
Suddenly all those 13 year-old me feelings come back,
I got quiet, and I didn’t know why.
And I don’t think he’s strong enough to deal with this,
Or smart enough.
I Lost the Whatever I Had
My sister says I’m wasting away.
That’s what living in this house does to me.
My mother’s house.
She says she can’t watch it.
She says come live with her.
This is what happens when I can’t speak my mind,
When I can’t criticize,
When no one thinks I’m important.
All the whatevers I found living on my own disintegrate.
So that I have to cry silently at two in the morning so no one bothers me.
I Don’t Like Her
My brother’s first girlfriend.
When my sister pushed me for the whys.
I said, “she’s young.”
How do you say someone is accidentally racist?
They’re only 19.
And he’s sillier with her than I’ve seen him in a long time.
She’s a lot like me.
And it’s hard to see your own traits reflected back at you by a prettier face.
She asked me to tell embarrassing stories about my brother to her.
How do I explain what’s wrong with that?
I told my sister, she’s very much raised as middle-class suburbs Indiana.
I think he’s smarter than her. I think he can easily out-maneuver her.
I worry that she’s not enough of a force of nature to counteract the abusive tendencies his father taught him.
He asked, and I said, “you like her, I like her.”
Cop out. I’m a cop out.
She’s Way Too Good of a Person to Be Friends with Me
It’s not often I’m the crazy lady who takes someone on adventures.
Except with her I am.
I’m the brave one.
And she takes me seriously, and the things I tell her actually seem to help her.
It’s almost like I’m scared she’ll clean the cynic out of me and I’ll have to start caring again.
Oh god save me.
I Haven’t Found a Job
I shake, literally my hands shake, like they do when I confront my mother,
When I have to apply for jobs.
I have to put my hand over my eyes, scary-movie-watching style, and just type.
To the outside, it’s such an easy fix.
I want to find a job, almost any job, before I move,
Just kidding, I want a paying job that isn’t demeaning.
And there go all my options.
This Counseling Book
Don’t worry about why I’m reading it.
Listen to what I discovered.
If the counselor and the client have different social-economic status, personal values, background and experiences, they might not click.
My god. This is why people who move have so many problems.
Think about it, if you don’t want to share with a trained professional who’s a little different than you, why would you ever be friends with someone so vastly different than yourself. They, and I quote, don’t have “intuitive insight.”
And you know what else?
This is exactly why my roommate up north couldn’t find any friends,
Because she doesn’t have anything in that list in common with the locals, and she didn’t know how to find common ground.
She thought the common ground should come to her.
i can’t bring myself to look at the last of alaska photos. so instead, here’s shades state park in indiana