My Lips on Your Lungs

There isn’t black black-enough to cross it out.

Sitting like a king on the horns of doubt.

Does anybody know what I’m talking about?

 

If I set fire to the moon, would you notice?

Could I sacrifice my pain to see truth, to know this?

Misery is the only home I’ve had but it’s one I wouldn’t miss.

 

It’s a little crazy, isn’t it?

Grinning to ensure you fit.

It burns, doesn’t it?

 

Almost like the world wants us to live. But it doesn’t.

Realizing I’ve walked in the skin of someone I wasn’t.

Until I became you to stay away from what I mustn’t.

 

Mustn’t, little miss.

Good girls and boys all know this.

 

Mustn’t be a mess

Pretend you have no stress

Got society to impress

They might ask you to undress

Must always answer yes

And speak a little less

Win this game of chess

Ignore your heart’s abscess

Yes – you can breathe, I guess

(Just not in excess)

Climb to my your success

Must make everyone obsess.

 

I tired your way, discovered something –

I don’t want this life and I’m fighting.

Everyone ready? You might need better lighting.

 

I’ll undress alright, unzip my skin,

Drop it on the floor and let the horror settle in.

Pull up a chair, take a seat, I’m about to begin.

 

I’m a mess, I confess, no doubt about that.

Can’t just pull mental health out of a hat.

And something’s making it worse, let’s talk about that…

 

You want who I am to be the mask you used to see,

But that’s just not me and I’d rather be free.

Instead, I’ve started stepping into me.

 

You’re angry but that’s okay, I expected the worst.

But this shabby glass bubble, I’m going to shoot, it’s going to burst.

I need some space. My soul needs to be nursed.

Sometimes all this compassion makes me feel cursed.

I’m drowning in pain ‘cuz I never put myself first.

I wish all these wasted years could be reimbursed.

When I speak up now, it has to be rehearsed.

Feeling so spineless? Let me tell you, it’s the worst.

 

Have to climb a mountain just to open my mouth.

Always afraid the situation’s going to go south.

 

Then there’s this other part of me that wants everything to burn.

‘Cuz maybe if they hurt too, they’ll have to learn.

With their pretty plastic melting, with nowhere to turn,

Maybe they’ll remember some respect, some human concern.

 

If I’m honest though, sometimes I just want them to hurt.

Yeah, I know, it’s childish. I’m trying to divert.

No, I won’t smile and no, I won’t revert.

I’m thinking it’s time to draw some lines and assert.

 

Let me just slide it down like lace,

I won’t force but you’ll embrace

Or I’ll leave, erase every trace.

I’m using my own two feet if I’m running this race.

You can’t have my voice or my face.

Won’t sell my soul, get off my case.

Think I’ll eat it? You’re off base.

 

Won’t take it for the crowd or sit like a lady,

Won’t wait politely in line for a bowl of misery.

Think you can stop me? Then you never knew me.

 

Sewing my own skin now and it’s Mizz not missy.

You want into my life? Show me!

Think I should go back to pretending? Try me.

Think I’m too messy? I’m so not sorry.

Think I’m too open? Don’t follow me.

 

Throwing husks into the fire so I can see inside myself.

Taking all these voices off the shelf.

Going to work. Shattered mind won’t fix itself.

Watch me stitch them together into one self.

 

Double sided, bipolar, multiple personality,

Jekyll and Hyde. Yes baby, that’s me.

Normal to be more than one thing, you hear me?

 

Not enough whiteout to cover me up now.

You could probably extinguish me, but I’m not sure how.

Kill me but changing me’s not something I’ll allow.

Killing butterflies and making dignity bow –

That’s not for me, I’ll stop you somehow.

Bottom line is, you won’t have any part of me, I disavow.

 

Silly shadow eater, you thought I was done?

I’ve got my ribs to crack open and wars to have won,

Barbed wire to come open, velvet to slide on,

I’ve got my boots to lace up, some hearts to shake, hon.

Walls to break until your fears come undone,

I’ve got heavy nights to bleed through to meet the sun.

Oops – that’s not what you meant by some edible fun?

My lipstick on your lungs, I’ve got a reckoning to run.

 

By Daphne Shadows

 

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Open Up

Some people will tell you, you’re not enough, not worthy.

They are wrong.

You are beautiful. You are good enough.

Open up. Be vulnerable, even if you get hurt. Don’t sign yourself up for getting hurt. But don’t close yourself off from everything real because it risks the sting of a broken heart.

You have an undeniable boatload of potential.

You are eons of life stuffed into a small carry on that people want to stuff in a box and ignore. They’re afraid you’re brilliant.

Be brilliant. Be you.

Choose Struggle, Choose to Create

Pain is a given.
No one in this life will escape without hurting.
No one enjoys pain. No one orders up tests or trials in this life. No one jumps up and down in line, hoping they’ll get selected to have another trauma or misery, scar or issue to add to their life.
Doesn’t matter.
Pain is a given.

Within this pain, we have two choices. As always, we have to choose.

 

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ONE
Denial. Bury your head in the metaphorical sand. Seek distractions. Never live in your own body, in the present moment. Don’t work on your issues. Don’t face your demons. Never face your secrets. Hide. Avoid. Refuse to believe. Push others away. Refuse to grow, work on your failings (because we all have our failings).

TWO
We do the work. We struggle through our challenges and fail we may, but we get back on. We let go of what has died. We move forward to what we need. We learn from the past but leave it there. We take the punches as they come, and we figure out how to work around them, hit back, or turn everything upside down and create our own arena of war. We face our demons, our failings, our mistakes. We learn from them and we learn how to destroy shame, turn it into something brilliant and vibrant.

If we choose option one, all we feel is the pain of this life.
If we choose the second option – yes, we’re going to feel pain. But we also get this spectacular, miraculous, gorgeous, chaotic, mess of joys and peace, possibilities and these amazing experiences we never thought possible.

We always have the option to either create or destroy our own life.
Pain is never an option in this life. It’s a given. Why not go through pain to grow, change, and become, so we can then experience joy, peace, and the ability to thrive? Passiveness isn’t going to get us anywhere. No one enjoys treading water, playing the waiting game. No one enjoys hurting for nothing. Well, no one enjoys hurting, period. Gather your hopes, dreams, touchstones and friends. The pieces of yourself that anchor to your very soul. Pain will come regardless. But please, don’t allow it to rule your life. Live through it until it breaks open to magnificence. This life is livable if we choose to stretch past what we think we can do.

 

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If Life Was a Street Sweeper

It has been a painful past couple of weeks.

One hit after the other. In all different categories of life.

But I will tell you what. Sometimes pain has a way of cleansing you from the inside out. It’s like a fire that burns away all the cobwebs and dust, cleans the gunk that was stuck in the corners, as the flames flick off the outer shell you didn’t realize you’d developed.

 

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Like the new pink, soft skin that grows after the scab has fallen off.

Clears up your perspective.

Shakes loose old habits or beliefs you didn’t realize you’d clung to.

I was planning on doing some fun research into the Egyptian Scarab beetle or Rafiki from The Lion King for my next post.

Sometimes life sneaks up on you in the form of a street sweeper and knocks you off your feet.

I kinda stood around dazed only to realize I wasn’t standing, I’d landed on my bum on the sidewalk and the leaves had already started falling on top of me like an all natural Fall coffin, before I’d become aware of it.

 

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I feel like, if life was a street sweeper, it would have a crazy huge bumper with some wicked sign on the front, plastered atop a smirking smiley. There would definitely NOT be anyone behind the wheel. But I imagine a sweet smile plastered to the back.

Because aren’t we typically better off once life has knocked us off balance?

I am currently dusting myself off, enjoying the Fall leaves about me (yes, I know it’s not Fall, don’t worry I didn’t hit my head), and just glanced the smiley on the back of the truck before it turned the corner.

I’m fairly certain I’m still in Kansas but don’t quote me on that. I don’t know what street I’m on, because hey, life typically doesn’t tell us where it’s going to drop us. There are no tornadoes, small dogs, or sparkly red shoes, so I think it’s safe to say I’m conscious.

The question always lingers at this point. Where to now?

 

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Bad Habit

I get overwhelmed.

Overstimulated.

 

Then I lose myself.

To a jumble of masquerading shades and low vibrational, angry, shouts and growls clawing at me from the inside out until I can barely remember how to breathe.

I hide inside myself before my brain even realizes what’s going on.

It’s a habit.

 

It helps the pain win.

Pushes along the absurd idea that this is never going to end. I will never find a way out.

I will never be good enough.

Strong enough.

 

It’s a bad habit.

A learned behavior.

Conditioned behavior.

A symptom.

Side effect.

Take your pick.

 

This isn’t always the ‘why’ behind me going quiet.

This time it was.

 

47 Truths People Would Tell Their Younger Selves

If you could go back in time, and tell yourself up to five things, what would you say?

While I’m a big believer in having to live through our trials, pains, and sorrows in order to learn, grow, and become who we are today – I read this question in an email and it immediately captured me.

I haven’t been able to get it out of my head.

So I asked a handful of people I know what they would say…

 

I’d like to play blog tag with EVERYONE WHO READS THIS POST.

Oh yeah.

Challenge thrown down.

I’d love it if different people could copy and paste this post – and add onto it, wisdom from the people in their own lives. Let’s see how many truths we can accumulate. Don’t forget to link back to me so I can see too!

Also, if you’ve got some answers — throw ’em at me in the comments section! I want to know.

 

 

Laura,

  1. “Love yourself as you are, but always strive to become better.”
  2. “You’re beautiful and worthwhile and priceless.”
  3. “You are a daughter of a King [God] and are destined to be a Queen. Act accordingly.”

 

Reta,

  1. To my fifteen-year-old self: “You don’t know everything, you’ve got a lot more to learn about the real world. Much more wisdom to hear.”

 

Tannis,

  1. “If I had something to tell my younger self, it would just be that I wouldn’t change a thing. I have no regrets. My life has had the same ups and downs that every person does. But, I wouldn’t change who I have become. And, the best part, I have the three most miraculous children in the world! Just keep driving yourself forward every single day.”

 

Rose,

  1. “My feelings matter.”
  2. “I am special and deserve to be loved and nurtured.”
  3. “There is help out there for kids in abusive situations.”
  4. “I was right when I wondered if families could be happy, supportive, and loving.”
  5. “I can be truly happy and someday I will meet a wonderful man that loves me for who I am – and I will have a beautiful family of my own and have the opportunity to be the loving role model I always wanted.”

 

Anonymous,

  1. “It get’s better.”

 

Anonymous,

  1. “You don’t really have to grow up in all aspects of life; most of your best times will involve being silly and childlike.”
  2. “Yes, I know it sounds foreign right now, but you CAN learn to meditate.”
  3. “You are who you are and that’s okay. You can still be a wife and a mom. Most people will still like you and the ones who don’t won’t matter. You’ll miss out on a lot of peace if you wait until you’re 26 to realize this.”

 

Alisha,

  1. “Don’t date that guy.”
  2. “Go to class.”
  3. “You’re not fat.”
  4. “Say ‘no thanks’.”
  5. “Don’t waste your time.”

 

Martha,

  1. “Be more attentive in school. Now I understand the true importance of history! It’s a composite of everything we are – and a true path to whatever we will be. What, with all the warnings of what to not do again!”
  2. “Study Orwell more in depth. His 1984 is today! Are we in a time warp? Will we ever learn? And if we truly did, would we have the courage to change?”
  3. “Keep God’s commandments and follow without question!!!”

 

Chuck,

  1. “Go into baseball with Don Drysdale with the chance to pitch for the Dodgers.”
  2. “Do not get married at age nineteen.”
  3. “Do not start drinking.”

 

Kevin,

  1. “Don’t sell your 1967 Mustang fastback.”
  2. “Buy that house even if at first it will be hard.”
  3. “Save money for a rainy day.”
  4. “Don’t take that first pain pill.”
  5. “Most of all, I would beat it into myself to put my kids first in everything and to show them support in everything they do.

 

Anonymous,

  1. “Be courageous.”
  2. “Don’t allow my fears to sway my dreams.”
  3. “When I meet a church member, listen with my heart. Better decisions will follow that knowledge.”

 

Jim,

  1. “Career, financial, and investment advice.”
  2. “However, most of the wisest counsel I would like to give myself, I needed to learn through experience.”

 

Tiffany,

  1. “Just because you do something differently than someone else does not make it wrong or the wrong way of doing something. It’s your own way!”
  2. “Always keep an open mind.”
  3. “Never make an important decision based on emotions.”

 

Lisa,

  1. “This Earth is not our home. Our home is with God. Stay focused on your Eternal goal and not the worldly experience.”
  2. “Stand up for the things that you need and believe in.”
  3. “Don’t stress over the little things. God is there to help you through any trial. He will make the pain lighter and easier to handle.”
  4. “Love yourself, shine your light.”

 

Daphne Shadows,

  1. Stop hating yourself. If you don’t, this bad habit is going to grow until it’s taken over your identity.
  2. Stop allowing others to choke the life out of you with fear.
  3. Hope. Believe. It gets better. So much better.
  4. I would read “Invictus”, hug myself, and whisper in my ear, between you and God, you are the master of your fate, you decide your life. No one else. Not anyone else. Not ever.
  5. Get to writing stories you want to write! Enjoy it. That’s why you do it. If there’s no passion, there’s no life.

 

 

Invictus 

by William Ernest Henley

 

Out of the night that covers me,

Black as the pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

For my unconquerable soul.

 

In the fell clutch of circumstance

I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance

My head is bloody, but unbowed.

 

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

Finds and shall find me unafraid.

 

It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate,

I am the captain of my soul.

 

Hourglass

I am feeling quiet inside today.

As if a peacefulness has unrolled its yoga mat inside me and got to work.

It’s a calmness.

A beauty.

 

It is also quite strange.

For me, you see.

 

It allows me to remember all the sweetness, while acknowledging the scars.

Just because there is darkness in here, doesn’t mean it’s all I have to offer.

 

There’s also a pain in my chest.

It keeps speaking up.

I’m okay with that too.

That isn’t all there is.

 

By Daphne Shadows