Several months after I almost took my life, I got sober.
For most of my life, I felt like a headless human running around—I felt disconnected. My body existed here on Earth, but I was trapped between the past and future, far from the present. This image of my headless human self haunted me for almost 20 years, leading to addictive behaviors that made me feel lost.
Until one morning, I found myself staring at the blank pages of an empty notebook with nowhere to go.
To my surprise, words bled out in the form of essays, poems, and stories that led to me finally connecting to my heart. It was the strangest feeling I’ve ever experienced.
Darkness has come, and I do not know why
I walk with him as he hears my cry
I felt the presence of a headless human by my side every morning I got up to write. The difference was, I learned to accept this part of me rather than run from it. And that acceptance leads to an open heart.
When I think about all I have gone through in my short life, what others have shared with me, and the stories of my mentors, I see many of the things we run from are the height of the human experience that brings us all together.
We are running on a road with nowhere to go. We chase superficial things. We hide behind masks and leave our hearts buried beneath years of repressed emotions while losing ourselves in the process. We lie to ourselves and others. We “should” ourselves to death. We punish and shame the reflection in the mirror. We break hearts and also feel heartbreak. We love and hate. We fight and cry. We treat our bodies like sh*t. We feel lost. We want to be worthy but we feel unworthy.
Sobriety and writing remind me to feel it all.
I felt my heart speak to me the moment I chose to live again and tell my story. This poem is for anyone who feels lost in the world, for those who are trying to hold it all together.
Anger, pain, confusion, and sorrow.
So many parts to a heavy heart.
Writing and fighting hurt is how I start.
Breathe in, breathe out. Calm the mind.
Write every day, connect to my heart, what will I find?
More words, verses, and pages to my story.
This is who I am, not who I was or who I will be.
The hardest thing about being here today is the headless human tries to find his way into my life any chance he gets. I don’t know if he is here to remind me of who I am, or if he is here to take my last breath, but he never goes away.
For those of us who feel lost, the pain we feel is a beautiful reminder that we are very much alive. Keep fighting—because the world needs our stories to get through another day.