Chapter 1: The Beast Within

Every day I fight it- I don’t want to be here anymore. It crawls into my mind as I awake. A new dawn and my eyes open, alive still, back from my escape. I wish they could know it’s not their fault. That I love them with all that I am. But I feel crippled by the illusionary expectations of the way a mom and a human being in general is supposed to be. Every tug of the arm, countless and unnecassary, because mommy has to work for us to survive and to ever get out of a full house that turns the tempered poison in her gut. What else do you ask of me? What else is it I need to do? How should I smile? How should I laugh? How should I take care of the children? Did they really come out of my womb? Am I worthy of such a thing? Are they really mine? My own flesh and blood. No. It doesn’t feel that way. But here I am as I slave away like a ghost watching two beautiful souls bounce on their toes. The days, they pass and I notice that my oldest daughter’s legs have grown. They deserve the best. But I feel like I die each passing moment inside to have them. So the best isn’t me. Or so it seems. I cry because I remember being you, how hungry I was for love. I just don’t know yet how to feel the pain to give you what you need. So I tap my thighs to move my hands, I must resist the urge to numb the pain. I must get through this once and for all. Because I am tired you see. I may snap and kill the nearest prey. I am tired of thinking of ways to end my life. I am tired of hiding the fact that I don’t want to live here anymore. I am done “shakespearing” life to hysterical standards of another hurting soul who thinks they know best. Heres a toast to you, you bastard, here I am and I am hurting too. But you don’t know what is best for me. Only what is best for you. I don’t want to hear how life is just hard, and that that’s just how it is. If that is so, the beauty gone, left with the gust of wind, then goodbye. I will be no more. It wouldn’t be worth it to me. Don’t tell me that I have to work my body and spirit into dust, days and hours taken from me to make a living, because then I’ll say again, goodbye. I will be no more. Don’t tell me that all of that is part of earning your “mothers badge,” and to suck it up, because this is just the way it is, and it doesn’t get any better. If that is so I will be no more. It wouldn’t be worth it to me. Every day I step outside, every day I say goodbye. I tie the apron around my shrinking waste and I smile the way I am supposed to. Sometimes I feel the love grow hot from within, and others times I force my fidgety grin. There are times when the cold drips in and freezes stiff the feelings I resist- times when nothing can stop me and I feel like I can actually be the mom my kids need. You may find it appalling reading such brutal honesty from a woman you least expected. But I am tired, you see. And I am done “shakespearing” the expectations of society. I already feel the rot building up inside my stomach, how it eats away up into my chest. Every day more I find ways to soothe the pain. But it always comes back to show me what I haven’t yet stared in the face. How do we do it? How do we survive living off of expectations? How do we live a WHOLE lifetime that way- never truly having our own voice? How miserable that life must be. Let me tell you my story. And please do tell me yours. But for god sakes let me tell you my story.

To be continued.

-Bekah Turney

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