“To live is the rarest thing in the world. Most people exist, that is all.”
― Oscar Wilde
Church was good tonight. It was the first time that I’ve attended it without an adult family member in tow to drag me by the hand. The initial feeling of being lost was eclipsed by the feeling of returning home. I’ve never had a home. I can think of two places that I once considered home because I was happiest there but my time there was so short and temporary that I can’t call them home. Being at my home church tonight, the church that I was brought up in by my grandmother, felt good. Can I ever hope to replicate this feeling with some other church in a different state, a different city? Can I really leave and call another church home? I don’t think so. I think that I will always consider this church my home and it feels good to be back in it. I felt like the Lord was embracing me and welcoming me back tonight. I felt at home. Not once did I ever feel this way at the other church, the church that my grandmother attended as a little girl. Maybe this is how she felt when she finally went back. I can’t blame her for sticking to that church. I’m sure she won’t blame me for sticking to this one. It feels good to be home.
“I was wise enough never to grow up, while fooling people into believing I had.”
I used to think I was grown up until I was forced to do grown up things. Sunday went better than I expected. There was no raised voices, harsh words, or bitter arguments. My grandmother and I discussed my decision to attend a different church calmly and like adults. I will now be catching a ride from a fellow sister of the church to church. And for the best news of all. . . I got my college acceptance letter. I won’t “officially” be going to New York until I submit my housing/tuition deposit but its the best news I’ve received so far. Its also scary. I didn’t really think I was leaving the state until one of my colleges accepted me and now they have. I’m afraid of “growing up”. How do I know if I’m ready to be on my own? I guess I won’t find out until I’m on my own but its definitely terrifying. I’m going to miss my grandmother like crazy and she’s already talking about taking my little sister in after I leave. I don’t want anyone to have my room, sleep in my bed, or take my place in her life but I understand that things will be lonely for her once I’m no longer there to keep her company. Life goes on and I’m about to experience it on my own. Wish me luck.
I used to like writing poetry but I found myself comparing my poetry to others and thought I wasn’t any good. So I’m going to change that and start writing again anyway because I like to do it, good or not. If someone doesn’t like what I write then they don’t have to read it and can go find someone that they think is better because I’m doing this for me. So this is the first poem of hopefully many to come.
I want my words to rip you open
sear the flesh from you skin
to find the darkness in your heart
and obliterate it
“Forgiveness is the fragrance that the violet sheds on the heel that has crushed it.”
― Mark Twain
It’s Christmas morning. My mom dropped my gifts off yesterday and I opened them later that night. I’ve always wanted a white Christmas. We don’t get much snow down here, if at all. I used to think that Christmas wasn’t Christmas without snow. I still slightly feel that way and this belief has been spawned by television and books from my childhood. My mom got me this Christmas card and she signed it “Love, Mom”. I can count on one hand how many times she has ever said that she loved me and it made me wonder if she signed it because she meant it or because moms are supposed to sign cards like that to their daughters. I don’t know why but I always feel like I need to know the intent behind peoples’ actions. Maybe its a trust thing. But. . . . I wonder if there will ever be a time where I’ll forgive her, a time where I won’t shudder at the thought of her being a grandmother to a child of mine, a time where I won’t always compare the good that she has done for me to the bad that she has always done to me. This time next year I might not even be in the same state as her. It makes me wonder if that is the reason behind her recent. . . . cordiality. I don’t think she wants me to leave anymore than my grandmother does. I want to forgive her but in the past every time that I brought myself to do so she would do something else worth forgiving. You can kill a dead horse only so many times. In my head I often compared her to a porcupine. No matter what angle you come from, every time you get close you get pricked. The day has barely gotten started so I don’t know how this Christmas is going to turn out but it has to be better than last year’s; I had never been so close to committing suicide than I was then. Merry Christmas everyone. I hope its a joyful one.
“Every day, God grants us the precious gift of life. Yet every day, we squander it with our selfish, petty concerns, rather than helping someone as He helps us.”
My grandmother is mad at me. Because she is my main source of transportation since I don’t possess a driver’s license yet, whatever church she chooses to go to on Sunday I have to go to as well. That being said, we recently changed our church membership. I don’t like our new church. Therefore I refuse to attend it on any day other than Sunday. I believe the “bishop” is petty. Twice now she has verbally attacked me in her sermons due to something she found lacking in my worship. I wasn’t aware that there was a standard for worshipping your God. After each of these incidences her grandson came to politely paraphrase and repeat her words to me as if they were his own. This previous Sunday is the last straw. I refuse to attend that church. I shouldn’t have to go there and fix my behavior to please the bishop. I am there to WORSHIP. Which were her words. “I shouldn’t be so composed while praising God”. Who made her the judge of my PERSONAL worship? She is there to deliver the Lord’s words. Not critique how we behave during praise. I’m sorry if I made this post a rant but my grandmother is being hypocritical. She is adamant about me going to church for my own soul and choosing my own church but gets upset when I don’t choose her church. What happened to my choice? I’m just frustrated because I feel like everyone is shoving me at that church while also trying to convince me to “choose” it. No church is perfect but I don’t see anything wrong with our old church. The one I was basically raised in. I refuse to be forced into this church so this upcoming Sunday there is going to be a huge fight between my grandmother and I. I just hope I’m not homeless by the end of it. I’m not running from God, which is her favorite thing to say, but I am running from a church that I don’t believe will benefit me and my relationship with God. I’m also aware that there are other religions out there so to anyone reading this, yes I’m a Christian; Pentecostal to be exact. And everyone should have the right to choose their own church. Not be forced into one or manipulated into one by the head bishops maternal appearance. Just because she is a friend of my grandmother’s doesn’t make her a friend of mine. And I realize that after all this ranting that this blog post is less about church and more about choice. I’m not a child anymore and its time that my grandmother and I both acknowledged it. The first step is me choosing my own church.
“Some people make a bad bed, they just have to lie in it.”
― Virginia Euwer Wolff
I believe my mother’s world is starting to crumble. She officially has three children out of her house now. My younger brother spent the night with me last night so that his paternal grandmother could come pick him up today. He is going to live with her and his dad. My second youngest sister has been living next door to me with my aunt since her allegations against my mom’s boyfriend resurfaced a few months ago. My mom called me about an hour ago. She sounded on the verge of tears and told me that she’s considering moving out of town; just getting in the car and driving and taking no one with her. She still has three of my siblings living under the same roof as her. I think she expected me to say something encouraging or something since there were a few long moments of silence on her side. I don’t know what to tell her or what to think. I think I’m slightly astonished that she called me of all people when she has rarely been there for me, if at all, and drove me away from her house. I wanted to be harsh and say “Karma is a bitch” but I’m not that cold-hearted and she was already on the verge of tears. I wonder if she’s feeling how I felt when she blatantly told me that she wanted me to lie to the child protection workers. Confused, shocked, betrayed, hurt, and numb all at once. I wish I can take some pleasure from her obvious pain but I’m just concerned about my siblings. My sister has a newborn baby and needs someone to teach her how to be a mother, my brother no longer has my other brother as a companion and is now the only boy in the house, and my baby sister is barely a toddler. They need their mom and that is why I lied to the social workers in the first place. Not for my mom but for my siblings. Where would they go once both my mom and her boyfriend were behind bars? Would we ever see each other again if we were separated? I didn’t know and I don’t know now. As the oldest I have always taken responsibility for my siblings and even when it pained me I thought of them first. Whatever my mom decides to do I hope my siblings will have somewhere to go.
“The oldest and strongest emotion of mankind is fear.”
— H.P. Lovecraft
I think I’m beginning to lose my mind. Maybe its this house or maybe its just me. Its one thing to be afraid of what awaits you in your sleep but its another to be afraid of what’s there when you’re awake. My grandmother goes back to work tomorrow night. On Saturday I saw an old woman, floating in my bedroom. She was there in a blink of an eye but I’ve taken to covering up my television before this because I thought I was seeing a reflection of someone in the screen. Its one thing to think you hear someone in this house but another to see something that isn’t really there…. that’s scary. I don’t know what to do. As usual my grandmother brings it back to religion and claims the devil is playing tricks with my mind. Or is my mind playing tricks on me? I’m officially scared to stay in this house alone now. I’m dreading Wednesday night. And this is the week of my midterms. I doubt it can get any worse than this. I hope I didn’t just jinx it.