no snappy title for this one.

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so. today i read brother, i’m dying by edwidge danticat, which is a totally heartbreaking book about family and illness and political unrest in haiti. i read it on the subway taking me away from new york. the first chapter made me cry, quietly, on the subway, with everyone sneaking glances at me in that new yorker way where they’re interested but don’t want to act too interested.
i read it while sitting in the plane for a fucking hour waiting to take off, and i read it while sneaking glances of the ocean beneath me, feeling the almost physical pain that comes with leaving, yet again.
when the saddest part of the book happened i glanced out at the rolling fields of western pennsylvania, hundreds of miles beneath me, and i hated bureaucracy and america and fucked up immigration policies and colonialism and america, again. just hated it, all this hate and sadness stuffed in my body, in a hermetically sealed airplane.
oh, but i’m a lucky, lucky girl, because all of that sadness, plus all the sadness and rage i carry with me anyway got to come out! i arrived at my home, my home that i’d dreamed of my entire week away, only to find that my boundaries have been completely trampled upon & that something really really not okay happened in my absence, and so i screamed and cried until i literally couldn’t breathe, i just felt so out of control.
once the immediate drama had died down i felt extra bad. because my home is safe, that’s why i love it, it’s safe for everyone who comes here but most especially for me. i had never had a permanent home where i felt safe until i came to pittsburgh; it’s really important to me. and tonight my home was not safe, and it was unsafe because i made it that way.
those who have been raised with any amount of violence and/or excessive anger might know what i’m talking about. that promise that you made a thousand times growing up, i’m never going to do this, not to anyone. and then when you react violently, even when it’s not half as bad as what you endured when you were a freakin’ child, you still feel that horrible guilt. the guilt of, oh my god, i am not any better than them. the guilt of, all that suffering was in vain, because i haven’t learned anything.
that’s not even true, because i have learned some things from my childhood. and i only react in extreme anger when i am very, very provoked. but it’s still scary and it still sucks.

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