I hardly remember the girl in the before picture, but I don’t want to forget her. I don’t want to forget what it was like to feel like a prisoner in my own body. The pain, the powerlessness to change. Change is slow and getting started is hard, but it’s possible when broken down into tiny manageable habits. If you’ve never struggled with obesity, it’s easy to think you just need to muster up a little discipline and put down the fork, but you’re wrong. It’s so much more complex than that. There’s a reason why 95% of those who lose regain it and it’s not because they’re lazy. We probably judge ourselves more than you because we’ve all been taught that it’s our fault. I’m working really hard to have compassion for myself – then and now –and for those who share the burden of obesity. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. But it doesn’t make us bad or lazy or stupid, it makes us sick. and I’m sick of a culture that believes otherwise and marginalizes people who are trying and failing despite their other achievements. Sorry to go off on a tangent, but this disconnect in understanding and compassion pains me. I am strong willed and determined and pursue my dreams with vigor, but when it comes to this, if I let my guard down, I’ll be back there in an instant. Seriously, eff obesity, but more than that, eff anyone who doesn’t have compassion for those of us who are up against it. Excuse my language, it’s the only word that feels appropriate this morning. Keep fighting the good fight babes and never give up. Happy Humpday 🐫

IG : excessmatters

Lost Memories. (TylerxReader)

Warning: if you are a sensitive person I would not recommend reading this. Also, *Starts to whisper* this is one of my *cough* bts *cough* writings that I just wrote last night *normal voice* I just changed the names. I also put in some of the my other writings if you recognize some of it that’s why. But I did 100% write this. I was just lazy and wanted to post something. Okay bye~

He was gone. He was really gone. No note, just a camera sitting on the bed next to him.

Start Of Video

The camera moved around as I tried setting it up on a rock. Tyler, was up in a tree branch drinking a bottle of water. The summer sun was going down and the heat was gone.

“Why do you record everything, I will never understand.” Tyler gets down from the tree and stands by me.

“Sometimes you forget the small memories and sometimes you want to get as close as possible to a certain memory. This is why I record, so I won’t forget.” I explain to him and point the camera toward Tyler.

“Ah, so you don’t want to forget me?” He chuckled and winked. “Kidding, but what is there to record? We’re just at a park.”

“There’s always more to everything.”

“Oh Y/n, always so deep.” He pats my head and takes the camera.

“Hello future Y/n, how’s life? All good I hope. In 8 years i’ll be 24 and you’ll be 23. I hope we still talk. Oh, how am I? Do I still look as sexy as ever?” He chuckles and paused for a moment to think. “Are we married? I hope so.”

He looks at me and smiles, as I blush and hide my face in my…well Tyler’s sweater that I was wearing. I playfully hit him and take the camera back.

“Yah, don’t say that. We’re not even a couple”

He takes the camera again and points it towards us. He wraps his hands around my waist as my back faces him. (Like a back hug ya know?)

“Correction, we’re not a couple yet.” He smiles.

“Huh, what do you mean?” I was confused and turned around to look at him.

“I’ve….I’ve liked you. I always have. But I was to scared to say anything. Y/F/n, will you do me the great honor of being my girlfriend?”

“Hmm, I mean….” I pretend to hesitate and get out of his grip.

“Um, i-its okay I’m sor-” His eyes widen and his smile disappears.

“Yah, idiot. I was kidding. Yes, I will be your girlfriend.” I hug him and he hugs back. Letting out a breath of relief.

“Oh, thank god. Don’t worry, I’ll treat you right.”

End of Video. The confession.

“Yah, don’t record me.” Tyler looked away and laughed, showing off his smile.

“You’re so beautiful, I need to treasure this moment.” I chuckle and point the camera back at him.

We were sitting on a rock, watching the sunset fade away. Our feet dangling, due to the lack of height. The gray and orange sunset looked like a painting. Mixing colors of purple and gray.

“You act as if I’m leaving, Y/n. Why? I will always be by your side, love. No matter what.” He paused and hugged me. “I-I love you. I’m in love with you.”

I gasped and hugged him tighter, dropping the camera. The camera fell into the perfect position. Pointing at Tyler and I hugging and the sunset behind us. Our silhouettes, outlined in black.

“I love you too, Tyler.”

The Video Ends. The first ‘I love you.’

“Get the camera angle right, Brendon. You keep shaking.“ Josh said.

“Ugh, I’m trying but you keep telling me what to do when I already know.” Brendon rolls his eyes.

“Can we just start this?” Tyler asked grabbing the mic and getting into position.

“Yea, sure come on.”

*Starts to play the song ‘Tear in my heart’* .

“Happy One year, Y/n. I love you and can’t live without you.” Tyler smiles and blows a kiss to the camera.

“They are literall goals. I want this in life.” Brendon pretends to cry.

“Okay, and we’re done now. Wait, how do you turn this off?” Tyler asks confused. The camera got really close up to his face as he tries to turn it off. “Oh, I got it-”

End of Video

First anniversary

“Hey Y/n, welcome to Tyler vlog. Haha.” The laugh was fake. It was obvious that he was hurting. His skin pale and his face was a little sunken in. “So, we broke up. I-I don’t know if I could take this much longer.”

Tears were streaming down his face and his once beautiful brown eyes were now dull and red.

“I’m sorry, I should have never doubt your love. I should have trusted you. If I was there you wouldn’t have turned to Josh. I should have never accused you of cheating. I’m an idiot, I know. But Y/n, this hurts so much. I feel like I’m going to die because of how much my heart hurts. This is my fault I know. But, I can’t lose you. I just can’t. I can’t live without the touch of you. Just being in your presence is more than I deserve.”

End of Video.

“Yea, you should have been there. I was playing basket ball with Josh and tried passing him the ball but he wasn’t paying attention and nailed him straight in the face.” Tyler laughed.

I chuckled and looked around. The beach was beautiful at night. The moon reflecting on the water. Tyler saw the camera and immediately looked away covering his face.

“Tyler, look at the camera and stop hiding your face. You’re cute~.”

“No~, I look bad.”

“Are you kidding me. You’re Tyler Joseph.” I laugh and start rapping but fail.

“Oh my, baby. You can’t rap.” Tyler laughs and looks at me as I pout.

“Hey, that’s mean.”

“It’s okay, I’ll teach you. But, can we go play in the water?”

He points to the water and looks back at me and grabs my hand.

“Ugh, Fine.” I laugh.

End of Video. Making memories.

“Hey, Y/n. You haven’t used this camera in a long time. So, I decided to take it. Make ya know Tyler vlogs.” He chuckles. He looked tired as if he hasn’t sleep in a while. But, nonetheless he still looked good.

“So, we’re fighting, once again.”

~Flash back to the night of the fight~

“You could have done something about it! Instead you just sat there flirting? Wow.. how low can you get in a Matter of 10 minutes?” I yelled. Tears threatening to spill. I refuse to cry. I blink it back I was brave.

“Wow, I was flirting? What were you doing, just getting ‘Friendly’ with that other guy Y/N? I don’t think so!” He yelled trying to overpower my voice from being heard.

“Listen to me Tyler I was not flirting, I was trying to get him off me for your Information. I have nothing to prove to you because I did nothing wrong. What’s your excuse? Did undressing each other with your eyes not work?” I just wanted to run right now.

“You have to understand my point of view Tyler.” You yelled. “It sure as hell looked like something.”

“Your over reacting Y/n.” Tyler yelled overpowering your voice.

That’s it, you were done yelling. You were tired of yelling day after day with Tyler. You slid down the wall. Hands covering your face, tears leaking out, giving up hope.

“Please. I can’t do this anymore. it’s all too much.” Your voice barley Audible but still loud enough to hear.

“W-what are you talking about?” He stuttered.

“It’s time to give up. On us. Hell, I’ve given up on everything.”

“You can’t be saying this. Y-you can’t b-be. Y/n I love you. F-forever and Always. Remember that?” His eyes turning into something you weren’t familiar with. His head tilted, eyes watering as if he was trying not to cry. Pain, misery and hopelessness was read all by his face.

“Tyler, some things aren’t ment to last for ever…..listen I’m going away….a-and you can’t do anything about it but I …..I will be back maybe in days or years but I will be back…..I promise.”

You said as you walked to your room that you and Tyler had shared and packed your bags. You planned on going to Josh. He probably already saw this coming. You told Josh everything. Down to the smallest detail. No matter how personal.

“Please, please I’m begging you please.” Tyler’s eyes had darkened. They were no longer soft brown but dull and red.

“I’m sorry.” You whispered as you walked out the door with bags in your hand. It was Foggy outside. The air was misty yet cool. Grey clouds flood the dull night sky.

Stars sprinkled around the galaxy. The roads were glistening from the rain that had happened early in the day. It was oddly relaxing. Winter was your favorite season. For most it had been Summer but you always liked the cold for some reason.

Trees were green yet loosing color but still kept it’s beauty. You planned on walking all the way to Josh’s The roads were long but nothing you couldn’t handle.

~End of flash back~

“I guess, I’m….I’m going to say things that I could never tell you in person. I guess someday you’ll stumble upon this and know the truth. It’s funny isn’t it. How life can be so cruel. It gives the most beautiful and precious things and then takes it away.” A tear fell down his cheeks. “I-I love you. But, I feel like..I’m not good enough for you. Fuck, I feel like I’m not good enough for myself.

You deserve better.“

End Of Video. True Feelings.

“Why am I here today? Why do I breath the air I breath? Why am I alive? Simple, because of her. The love of my life. My Princess with a broken crown. My beloved and only. My everything. I’m here because of her. It’s funny how a simple existence can make such a great change in the world.Well, at least to my world.

You didn’t have to do much to make me fall in love so quickly. Hell, all you had to do was breath. Literally, all you had to do was breath because I couldn’t live in a world without her. Oh, how cliché, I know. Looking at you, I only saw perfection. Nothing more, nothing less.

“Y/n, I can’t do this anymore. I can’t. I feel like I’m not myself but a prisoner to my own body. I think it’s time to say goodbye. I-I love you so much. But, I need to go. Please forgive me. But, you need to forget me and live your life. I- I can’t. I love you. Thank you for everything.”

Tyler’s Point of Veiw

I end the video with tears streaming down my face. I can’t be selfish. I need to let her go. I have to, for her own good.

I lay down with pills in my hand and swallow as much as possible. Freeing my self from this world as I am consumed by the darkness.

End of Video.

Your Point of Veiw

This is my fault. This is all my fault and I know it. No one could tell me any different. I cry and fall to the ground hugging my knees. It’s been a couple days and I couldn’t take it anymore. I miss him, I need him. I’m trying to get through but I’m not seeing hope.

Sep 3, 2017

Today im going to start but for real. I have always wanted to lose weight and tried a lot of different things but they never worked. Maybe because i couldn’t stay fuccus. Like sometimes i would have 3 days eating good stuff and doing exercise and then the nect day i would binge. But that stops today. Im not going to have more than 250kcal per day and im going to run everyday. First im going to just run and then after half an hour running im gonna do HIIT witch means running 20 seconds as fast as you can and then resting like a min. And you repeat it a few times. People told me that helps a lot so im gonna try it. I have a goal and I’ll achieve it!! I really really want to have the body that i want before i turn 18. Im tired of being the fat one in the group. Tired of going to a store and choose always the biggest size. Tired of loving the beach and not be able to go cuz im so ashamed of my body that i can’t wear a bikini without feeling that everyone around me is judging my body and how fat i am. And its so frustrating not liking the way i look . It feels like im a prisoner in my own body . But that’s going to change. All of that is going to be gone for good. Its a promise… and if someone out there thinks similar , that wants to lose weight but need support, you can always talk to me and we’ll support each other. You’re not alone ❤️

  • friends: why do you always change
  • me inside: because I have an unstable sense of self and don't feel comfortable in my own skin hence my desperate attempts to vacate myself from the prison of my own body and my extremely horrid tendency to get lost in delusional idealism and imitate the likes of people I admire then failing miserably and decaying into a fruitless attempt to be someone I can never be then engaging in self injurious acts for not having the confidence to go about a typical day without taking on the mannerisms of somebody else and feeling like an unoriginal piece of trash
  • me: I just like 2 change things up :-) just 4 fun

I had an aha moment today regarding my weight. I couldn’t stop crying. It’s time I really do something. I weigh 393 pounds and I don’t want to cross that threshold into 400+. None of my clothes fit and it’s impossible to find clothes that do fit. I’m constantly in pain and I legitimately feel like a prisoner in my own body. There are so many things I want to do that I physically can’t and it’s sad because I’m only 24 and I should be able to do a shit ton. I need help. I’m determined to do this! I have realized that I’m doing it for me. I don’t care how I physically look to other people. I just want to feel alive and free for the first time in my life.

“I’m here.”

Request: Hey can I have an imagine? Newt being the guy so I saw this somewhere but I liked the idea it’s where it’s been a few years afire the maze and everything and newts die that stuff but I was wondering if you could have YN be the The daughter of captain America so she’s on the news one day talking about the maze and newt who isn’t really die sees her and then try’s to found her bec they dating though out the whole thing and he founds her and cute stuff Please, Nothing dirty sorry if it’s difficult

A/N: Sorry anon, I changed it up just a bit. I didn’t put in the Captain America thing because it just felt a bit too random for me, but the rest is in there so I hope you still like it! Let me know if you think my imagines are too long because I swear they just get longer and longer each time, I don’t even mean to I just get a bit carried away. Anyways I hope you like it, don’t forget to leave some feedback! :) 

*Newt’s POV*

Noise. Busy Noise. That was the first thing I processed as Islowly emerged out of the darkness that had engulfed my brain for god knows howlong. All the sounds swirling around the room made the word hospital pop into my mind. Machinery beeping pierced the air and there were several voices murmuring quietly around me – discussing things that I couldn’t quite process. Then slowly, I got feeling back. I registered that I was lying in bed with a cool, thin sheet draped over my body. I felt my head resting against a soft pillow and my bare feet felt cold. Then, even slower it seemed, I got motion back. It started with a twitching in my fingers and toes, and then gradually I was able to move all of my limbs. I opened my eyes.

I squinted at the bright lights that blared down on my face – definitely a hospital.

“Ah, Mr. Newton!” A man dressed in a white lab coat addressed me. “You’re finally awake. How are you feeling?”

I ignored the man’s question and eyed him suspiciously, “Who are you?” I asked, not bothering to be friendly. “Another one of WICKED’s pawns? I don’t know what you did to me, but I’m done playing along. Take me to my friends and do it now.

The man gave me a sympathetic look, “You don’t understand yet. It’s okay, you’ll catch up with time. What you need to know is WICKED is gone and has been for about the last five years.”

“Five years? What do you mean gone? And what do you mean by ‘catch up’?” I bombarded him. “And where are my friends?”

The man’s smile only filled with more sympathy – I found myself hating him. “You will be surprised to hear that your friends believe you to be dead, Mr. Newton. Have you no memory of the last time you saw them?”

I thought long and hard, becoming a little apprehensive at the haziness of my mind. The only thing I could remember was running to the Berg from those creatures in the Scorch – me, Tommy, Minho, (Y/N) … then everything went black.

“Yeah we were running for our lives from the hell hole that you put us in.”  I spat.

“I have said it before, Mr. Newton, and I will say again. We are not WICKED. The WICKED program was dismantled five years ago … around the same time that your memories stop.”

Something in his face told me he wasn’t lying, and my heart pounded with fear and confusion. “What do you mean five years ago? How is that even possible?”

“Does the term ‘The Flare’ mean anything to you, Mr. Newton?”

I gasped and grasped the railing to the hospital bed as the term suddenly brought all the memories back to me in a flash.

The Rat Man telling us that I wasn’t immune while everyone else was, saying goodbye to (Y/N) before I went totally crazy, me actually slowly going crazy – a prisoner inside of my own body as I could not control my actions, begging Thomas to kill me with (Y/N) watching – horrified, and finally Thomas taking out his gun and honoring my last request as he pulled the trigger, ending my life …

Only my life hadn’t ended. I was here, alive. And definitely not infected with the Flare.

“Okay what the bloody hell happened, I want answers now.”

The man explained everything and I hung on to every last word as if my life depended on it. Apparently, when Tommy shot me, the shank couldn’t keep his eyes open to watch and missed his chance at a fatal shot. He only grazed my skull, and by some miracle, the bullet dipped just low enough to destroy the part of my brain that harvested the Flare, while leaving enough so that I was able to heal and make a full recovery. After the small price of a five year coma.

“So where are they now? The other Gladers, I mean. I need to find them as soon as possible. I need to find (Y/N).”

“I’m sorry, but as I have said, we are not WICKED. After your friends escaped, it was not our business to keep tabs on them. You are the only who has remained in our care.”

“Who is ‘our’,” I demanded. “Who are you?”

“It’s been five years, Mr. Newton. The world is slowly piecing itself back together – the Flare problem is under control, the solar flares are finally reducing, and the population is steadily growing. My name is Dr. Jacobs. You are currently in a regular hospital – I am a regular doctor. It will take time for you to understand and adapt to these new conditions, but we are confident that life will be much better for you from now on.”

I stared at him, dumbfounded, a million questions running through my mind.

“So how do you suggest I find them?”

The doctor flashed me another one of his sympathetic smiles, “You’ve just woken up from a lengthy coma, Mr. Newton. You need to rest and regain your strength before you take any action to locate your friends.”

“Well apparently I’ve been resting for five bloody years, now let me out of this buggin’ place so I can find them!”

“I’m sorry, but I can’t do that yet. We need to see how you adjust and make sure that you are healthy enough before you go anywhere.” I let out a frustrated sigh, but my weak body told me that he was right. I needed my strength back. “In the meantime, why don’t you relax and watch some TV?”

TV, I thought to myself, I guess the world really is back to normal. I knew what a TV was, but had no memories of ever actually using one. I looked to my left and saw a small black remote sitting on the bedside table. I picked it up and aimed it at the screen, as if it was something I did on an everyday basis, and pressed power.

“I’ll leave you to it then.” The doctor said before exiting the room.

I flipped through the channels, there were no TV shows or movies – I guess it was a little too soon before the world was able to worry about such things as Hollywood entertainment. There were, however, tons of news stations and talk shows that discussed everything that was happening with the world.

I channel surfed through everything, curious, trying to learn as much as I could about what was going on. It was difficult for me to focus, though, because my mind kept drifting back to (Y/N). She thought I was dead – she bloody saw me be killed. Was she okay? Had she moved on? What was she doing now? Was she with the others?

These thoughts clouded my brain, making it difficult for me to think of anything else. I had to find her and I had to do it as soon as possible. My finger started aimlessly tapping the remote, flipping through each channel, but not really looking. I was losing interest in the TV and was about to turn it off when an image suddenly popped up on the screen that made my breath catch in my throat. I flipped past it so quickly that I almost thought I had imagined it, but when I flipped back a few channels I saw that my eyes had not deceived me. (Y/N) was on the screen.

I immediately turned the volume up and intently started at the screen. She was being interviewed by a news station and I couldn’t help but shake my head at the cheesy title: “WICKED was NOT good”. My heart broke seeing her, her eyes that used to be sparkling and full of life were now dull and unhappy. Her smile that I had fallen in love with seemed to be permanently gone from her face. Her skin was pale and her voice lacked the determination that it once had. Yet somehow she was as beautiful as I had ever seen her and I wanted nothing more than to reach into the screen and hold her.  

Judging by what they were saying I figured I had turned it on towards the end of the interview.

“They took us … us kids and forced us to play along in their little experiment that would supposedly cure the Flare.” She spat, clearly angry. “They cared little for who died because if you died – you obviously weren’t fit for their ‘final candidate’. I watched my friends die.” She had to pause because her eyes were filling with tears – my heart broke even more. Somehow I knew shew as thinking of me. “I had to watch the one person who I cared most about in this world die. I can never forgive them for that.”

The camera then panned away from her, though that didn’t hide the fact that she was shaking with anger and crying. The shot then focused on a polished news anchor, “Thank you (Y/N) for sharing your truly heartbreaking story with us. We wish you the best.” And the screen faded out.

“Doctor!” I shouted. “Dr. Jacobs!”

He burst into the room a moment, “What’s the matter?”

“(Y/N),” I stuttered out. I was so stunned from seeing her that it was hard for me to get words out. “My girlfriend, (Y/N). She was just on the news. I need to get to her now.

“Mr. Newton–”  

“No. I don’t care about my health anymore, I’m bloody fine! She was just on the local news – she’s close. Now that I know that I can’t just buggin’ sit here and wait for me to ‘get better’. You should’ve seen her doc, how sad and defeated she was. I need to see her.”

He paused before letting out an exasperated sigh, “Okay.”  

“Okay?” I asked, a little surprised.

“Okay, I’ll help you.”

For the first time since I woke up, a smile found its way upon my face, “Thank you.”

He glanced at the screen she had just been on, “Fox. That’s easy – biggest station we’ve got around here. I can take you right there.”


“Seriously. That is saying that you can actually walk.”

This proved to be a task. Being bed ridden for that long had taken all of the strength out of my legs. Even with Dr. Jacobs help, it took me a good half hour before I could actually walk around the room without any help. After I mastered walking though, I was good to go. Though much weaker than I used to be, I could move – and that was all that mattered at the moment.

Dr. Jacobs discharged me and after an intense discussion with a colleague, he motioned for me to follow him out the door.

“I’m going to get in such huge trouble for this, but I figure it’s the least I can do after everything you had to go through.”

I found that my hatred for the guy had dissipated, “I really appreciate this.”

My heart jittered with nerves and excitement as we got in his car, I had no clue what to expect when I saw her. The car ride seemed to take forever, but my instincts told me it had only been around fifteen minutes. A part of me feared she would already be gone when we got there – the faster we went, the better.

Finally, we pulled into the parking lot of the Fox News studio. I didn’t know what to do. Was I supposed to enter and just ask to see her? Would they even let me in? I didn’t have to wonder much longer though, for just as I was about to voice my concerns to Dr. Jacobs, there she was opening the door and leaving the building. She walked across the parking lot with her head down, heading for a vehicle.

I jumped out of the car, barely hearing Dr. Jacob’s “I’ll wait here,” before I slammed the door.

I ran as fast as I could, the adrenaline running through my body giving me strength. I slowed my footsteps as I got closer, not wanting to startle her. After all we’d been through, I knew she’d scare easily. I guess I didn’t slow down fast enough, because she jumped a little and then turned around to face me.

To my surprise, she didn’t look shocked, or scared, or happy. Her eyes filled with … pain and a small rueful smile formed on her lips.

She let out a sigh before speaking, “I know you’re not real,” I was too stunned to speak, “It’s been five years, I thought I was done seeing your face everywhere. I guess it’ll never really stop. It doesn’t scare me anymore though, it’s kind of comforting in a way. There’s just something about seeing you that makes me feel safe – you were always able to do that, make me feel safe.” She paused and her voice became shaky as tears rolled down her cheeks, “I just miss you, Newt.” She reached out her hand as if she was going to caress my cheek, but then hesitated and moved to turn back around.

Before she was able to walk away, though, I grabbed her hand and pressed it to my cheek. “I’m here,” I said, looking her straight in the eyes, “I’m really here.” Her eyes went wide and she stood there, frozen, my hand over hers as it rested on my cheek. “It’s really me, (Y/N). I’m okay.”

She still stood frozen in shock, unable to move or make a sound.

Then she suddenly shook her head, “This isn’t real, this is a dream. This can’t actually be happening. This is impossible.”

I leaned down to kiss her, trying to convey everything I felt through the action. For a moment she didn’t respond, but a second later her lips were working with mine as if they had never been apart.

“Oh my god,” She said. “It’s actually you. Newt, I saw you die! How the hell are you alive?”

I told her everything that Dr. Jacobs had explained to me, and the more I talked, the more the gears turned in her head and she was able to see how it happened.

Her eyes suddenly filled with tears as everything processed in her brain. She threw herself into my arms, burying her face in my chest as she cried. My arms wrapped around her and I hugged her tightly, burying my face in her hair as my eyes brimmed with tears as well.

When she finally broke away from my embrace, she reached up and cupped both of my cheeks with her hands, as if making sure I was actually real. Her (Y/C/E) eyes that were shining with tears looked up into mine and I realized the sparkle that had once lit them up had finally returned. I could see the happiness gleaming in them. She stood on her tip toes and kissed me again.

“I can’t believe it’s really you.”

8417) Friedrich Nietzsche once said "Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one." For so long I raged and screamed in the prison of my own mind and body and the self-loathing that followed. I fought that monster for so long that it has consumed me and now I am that monster. Being cheated from birth is an insatiable rage that burns eternally within me. That I will carry with me always no matter how beautiful I may become.

The me on the left is forcing a smile. Inside I was miserable, depressed, low, feeling worthless. I felt like a prisoner in my own body, and I knew I needed to make a serious change.

I didn’t know where to start.

That’s not a good enough excuse.

Start one day at a time. One moment at a time. One decision at a time.

Surround yourself with a good support system. Get out of that comfort zone. Push yourself. Conquer your goals. Ask for help. Then you can tell your story and hope to inspire others.

If I can do it, you can do it.



When I was a little girl, my babysitter started masturbating in front of me. 

I couldn’t tell you when it started. I’m scared to admit I don’t remember any “before.” It just always “was." 

He lived at my grandmother’s house and we called him Uncle Joe. Joe was our fucking hero. He was the cool grown-up, who quoted Ace Ventura and let us stay up late. Everyone adored Joe, not least of which, my siblings and I.  He was charismatic, funny, charming, quick-witted, talented, NICE, aaaand a child molester.  

My siblings and I worshipped him. 

In the summertime, my grandma installed a jacuzzi in her back porch. That’s when those flimsy red swim trunks entered my life, an article of clothing I’d grow to hate. Joe’s penis always had a way of "falling out” of those shorts. He liked to wear them around the house, when we played Monopoly or watched TV. The first time I saw his penis, the hot tub lights were casting a celestial glow around it like a spotlight. He was stroking himself underwater while my siblings and I named animals that start with the letter G. 

I was baffled. 

I loved Uncle Joe, and I wanted him to love me. But what was he doing underwater? Why did he turn on the jets when my grandma walked in? 

I felt crazy. I asked my brother if he saw anything. He hadn’t. I suggested we sneak under Joe’s bed to spy on him. Maybe we’d catch him doing that “thing” again.  

We camped under Joe’s bed only a few minutes before he caught us and pealed us off the floor.  

“You scoundrels!” he said, shooing us away.  

We giggled and screamed, as Joe shuffled us out the door. Suddenly I felt a firm grip lock around my arm. My brother stepped out as Joe locked the door in one swift motion. He turned around to face me. 

The next part of this is extremely fucking difficult to talk about. 

The door shuts. The lock turns. And we’re “wrestling” in bed together. His terry cloth bath robe won’t stay shut. My legs kick and squirm under his weight, and he’s extremely heavy. I can’t breathe. He’s clutching my wrists, and I feel completely powerless. 

The synthetic comforter scratches my face, and I can hear my brother crying now. The door handle shakes violently. 

I want him to rescue me. I want him to open the door.

And then I don’t.

I don’t want him to see this. My God. I can NEVER let him see this. 

My body turns to stone as I stop resisting. I can feel my muscles tense up, then let go. Tighten, release. Resist, give in. 

I’m scared to look down. Every time I do, his robe is open and I see his penis. I know it’s touching me sometimes, but I don’t want to know where so I look away. I think of music. I try laughing, and he laughs too. It’s all a game. We’re just playing, can’t you SEE?

My breathing replaces words. I have none left. I just want this to stop. I want this to stop.

I can’t make this stop.

I cannot. Make. This. Stop. 

And so I disappear. I let the world around me fade to black. All the screaming stops, the grunting stops, the music stops. I stop inhabiting my body for a while. I dissolve. 

When it’s over, Joe lets me go. He doesn’t warn me not to tell anyone; he doesn’t have to. He tells me he loves me, and I believe him. 

My abuse continues like a secret double life, always hidden in plain sight. Most of the time, Joe is a lovable, compassionate caretaker, who makes everyone laugh. He teaches me how to play the piano. He helps me build my science fair project. Then every once in a while, he masturbates in front of me, or asks me to rub lotion on his penis, or cums with my hair on his lap. You know. Regular “he loves me” stuff.

Around the time I hit puberty, I stopped being interested in boys my age, and quickly became fascinated by older men. In my attempt to control the situation, I flirted with old men in chat rooms and tried cyber sex. My first kiss was with a 43 year old man. My hair turned white around 15. 

When I turned 16, Joe got married and moved to New York. I was liberated. I felt like the victor; if Joe was finally gone, I could be safe. No one would ever have to deal with a shattered perception of HIM, or ME, or any of the drama that comes with “serial childhood sex abuse.” I could be happy! I could be normal! I could learn to date boys my own age. I could enjoy sex! I was truly optimistic in the most fatalistic way. I had no idea.

Years later I planned a trip to NYC with my siblings. On our way to the airport, my grandmother called to say Joe was picking us up from Newark. I couldn’t believe this was happening. There was NO reason to EVER see this person again. 

For three days, I galavanted around Manhattan with my abuser. I kept my composure, laughing, smiling, making the most of this ever waking nightmare. On the last night our trip, Joe slept in our hotel room and at 3 in the morning, I woke up to find him masturbating over my bed. Suddenly all the memories and little “moments” I’d justified away came flooding back. I was 19 years old, but at that moment, I was 15 again. And 13. And 11. And 9. And 7. And 5. I was frozen in my bed with no one restraining me. Powerless as I’d ever been, a prisoner trapped in my own body. 

I wish I could say this was the end of sexual violence in my story. In college I was raped by my ex-boyfriend, then later another friend. I stopped trusting people. I assumed anyone who was nice to me just wanted something (sex), and I resented them for liking me. I couldn’t trust “love.” The people who said they loved me did horrible things to me and if that was “love” I wanted no part of it.

I got a Bachelors of Arts in psychology, trying to fix myself. I went to therapy. I read books. I fell in love and got married. I made friends. I entrenched myself in comedy, music, and art. I did all the “stuff” you’re supposed to do, the steps. Guys, it doesn’t go away. Every single day of my life is a struggle. I live with a head full of memories, dancing, swimming, competing for attention. I’m happy to say it’s a struggle I’m winning because each day brings me further away from those experiences. But I’m still learning what it means to accept love, and trust people. I’m still learning how to believe in myself - consistently - for longer than a 20 minute improv set. 

I can say this: I’m so thankful to be alive. I wouldn’t change a moment. Every fucked up sexual transgression that brought me to this point created one sassy, independent, creative broad, and I really like how I turned out. I do get sad sometimes.




The wall in front of the iron bed was mirrored. So were the walls to my right and left—there were five mirrors, or six maybe. I smelled nothing, heard nothing, saw nothing but me.

During the past several months, I hadn’t spent much time looking in mirrors, for reasons. Now that I was forced to, I couldn’t quite believe that the girl I was seeing was me. My dark, thick hair was parted in the middle, and it hung limp and dull over thin shoulders. My lips were almost the same color as my skin—that is to say, white. There were angles to my face that I’d never noticed before. Or maybe they hadn’t existed before. I was looking at a ghost, a shell, a stranger. If my parents saw me, they would never know who I was.

But they never did see me. That was part of the problem. That was why I was here.

“Yeah, we look like shit,” said a voice.

Said my voice.

But I hadn’t spoken. My lips hadn’t moved.

I bolted upright, looking at my infinite reflections. They stared back, looking panicked and wary at once.

“Up here.”

The voice was above me. I craned my neck—the ceiling was mirrored too. I saw my reflection in it, but this one, this reflection, was smiling at me. Even though I wasn’t smiling.

So. I’d finally lost it.

“Not yet,” my reflection said, looking amused. “But you’re close.”

“What—what is this?” A hallucination?

“Not a hallucination,” my reflection said. “Guess again.”

I dropped my gaze for a moment, glancing around the room. Every other reflection turned when I did. God, I hoped I was dreaming.

I looked back up at the reflection above me. The girl in the mirror—me, I guess—tilted her head slightly to the left. “Not quite. You’re in that kind-of-unconscious-kind-of-not space. Which should make you feel better about your sanity.”


“Also, you should know that there are sensors monitoring our pulse and heartbeat, so it would be better for both of us if you’d lie back down.”

I swung my head, looking for the monitors, but didn’t see any. I listened to the girl anyway.

“Thanks,” she said. “That Wayne guy comes in and examines us whenever our heart rate spikes, and he really creeps us out.”

I shook my head, the papery pillowcase crinkling with the movement. “Don’t say ‘us.’ That creeps me out.”

“Sorry, but it is us. I’m you,” my reflection said, arching an eyebrow. “I’m not exactly your biggest fan either, you know.”

I’ve had weird dreams. I’ve had weird hallucinations. But weird didn’t even begin to touch this, whatever this was. “So, what are you? My … my subconscious or something?”

“You can’t talk to your subconscious. That’s stupid. It’s more like—I’m the part of you that’s aware even when you don’t know you’re aware. She’s been giving us a lot of drugs—a lot of drugs—and it’s dulled our—sorry, your—awareness in some ways and heightened it in others.”

“‘She’ being … ?”

“Dr. Kells.”

The machine beside me beeped loudly as my heart rate spiked. I closed my eyes, and an image of Dr. Kells rose in the blackness, looming above me, so close that I could see tiny cracks in her thick layers of lipstick. I opened my eyes to make her go away, and saw myself instead.

“How long have I been here?” I asked out loud.

“Thirteen days,” the girl in the mirror answered.

Thirteen days. That was how long I’d been a prisoner in my own body, answering questions I didn’t want to answer and doing things I didn’t want to do. Every thought and memory was fuzzy, as if they were smothered in cotton; me, locked in what looked like a child’s bedroom, drawing picture after picture of what used to be my face. Me, extending my arm obediently while Wayne, Kells’s assistant in therapeutic torture, drew my blood. And me, the first day I woke up here, held captive by drugs and forced to listen to words that would change my life.

“You’ve been a participant in a blind study, Mara.”

An experiment.

“The reason you’ve been selected for this study is because you have a condition.”

Because I’m different.

“Your condition has caused pain to the people you love.”

I’ve killed them.

“We tried very hard to save all of your friends… . We just couldn’t get to Noah Shaw.”

But I did not kill Noah. I could not have killed him.

“Where are they?” I asked my reflection. She seemed confused, then looked at the mirror on my right. Just a normal mirror, I thought, but then the glass went dark.

An image of a girl, or something that had once been a girl, materialized out of the blackness. She was kneeling on carpet, her black hair falling over her bare shoulders as she leaned over something I couldn’t see. Her skin glowed bronze, and shadows flickered over her face. She was blurred and indistinct, as if someone had spilled a glass of water over a painting of her and the colors had started to run. And then the girl lifted her chin and looked directly at me.

It was Rachel.

“It’s just a game, Mara.” Her voice was scratchy. Distorted. When she opened her mouth again, the only sound that came out was static. Her smile was just a smear of white.

“What’s wrong with her?” I whispered, looking at Rachel’s flickering image in the glass.

“Nothing’s wrong with her. I mean, aside from the fact that she’s dead. But there is something wrong with your memory of her. That’s what you’re seeing—your memory.”

“Why does she look like—” I didn’t even know how to describe it. “Like that?”

“The flickering? I think it’s the candles. The three of us lit them before taking out the Ouija board. Don’t tell me you’ve forgotten that?”

“No, I mean she’s—she’s—distorted.” Rachel’s arms moved in front of her, but her hands were dipped in shadow and I couldn’t see what she was doing. Then she lifted one of them to her nose. Her arm ended at her wrist.

The girl in the mirror shrugged. “I don’t know. Not all of your memories are like this. Look left.”

I did, expecting the new mirror I was staring at to go dark too. It didn’t—not at first. I watched my reflection as the ends of my hair bled from dark brown to red, until it was red to the roots. My face filled out and rounded, and the eyes that stared back at me from the glass were Claire’s.

Claire sat up, and her image split off, separated from mine. She walked out of the white surgical gown I wore, and black threads wove around her pale, freckled body, until she was clothed in the dark jeans and puffy coat she’d been wearing the night we went to the asylum. The bright light in the mirrored room flickered and went out. Roots cracked the concrete floor beneath my bed. They grew into trees that scratched the sky.

Claire looked over her shoulder at me. “Oh my God. She’s freaking out already.”

When Claire spoke, her voice was normal. She wasn’t blurry, and she didn’t flicker or warp. She was whole.

“I don’t know what it means either,” the reflection above me said. “Jude is the same.”

My mouth went dry at the sound of his name. I glanced up and followed her gaze to the mirrored wall to my right; Jude appeared in it. I saw him standing in the center of a manicured Zen garden, with huddled, hunched people arranged around him like rocks. Jamie and Stella were among them. He held Stella by her shining black hair. I could see the veins in his hands, the pores in his skin. Every feature, every detail of him was clear. Sharp. I felt a flare of rage.

“Don’t,” my reflection said. “You’ll wake us up.”

“So what?” I said. “I don’t want to see this.” I never wanted to see him again. But when I looked again, there was a different image of him in the mirror. He was pushed against a bare white wall, a hand gripping his throat. The hand belonged to me.

I looked back up at the ceiling and the girl in it. I didn’t want to remember Horizons, or what had happened to me since. I looked down at my wrists, at my ankles. No restraints. “Just tell me how to get out.”

“They don’t need restraints to keep us chained up,” she said. “The drugs do that for them. They make us compliant. Willing. But they’re changing us too, I think. I don’t know how yet, but it has to mean something, that your memory of Rachel is broken but your memories of Claire and Jude aren’t.”

“What about my brothers? My parents?” And Noah, I thought but didn’t say.

As I spoke, images of each of them filled the mirrors around me. Joseph was wearing a suit with a pocket square, rolling his eyes at someone. Daniel was laughing in his car, making a face at me from behind the wheel. The image of my mother showed her sitting on her bed, laptop on her lap, her face drawn and worried. My father was sitting up in his hospital bed, eating a contraband slice of pizza. And Noah—

Noah’s eyes were closed, but he was breathing. Sleeping. One of his hands was curled in a loose fist by his face, and his T-shirt, the one with the holes in it, was twisted, exposing a sliver of skin above his boxers. This was how he looked the morning after I told him what was wrong with me. After we figured out what was wrong with us.

I couldn’t stop looking at them–the people I loved, laughing and talking and living behind silvered panes of glass. But as I did, I realized something wasn’t right. I looked closely at Noah. He was sleeping, not moving, which made it easier for me to finally see. His edges were faded. Blurred. I glanced back at the images of my parents, my brothers. Their edges were soft too.

“We’re losing them, I think,” the girl said. “I don’t know why, but I think Kells does, and I think she’s doing it on purpose.”

I was only half-listening. I couldn’t stop staring at the mirrors.

“I’m never going to see them again, am I.” It wasn’t a question.

“My sources say no.”

“You know,” I said to her, “you’re kind of an asshole.”

“Well, that would explain why we’re so popular. Speaking of, Jamie and Stella are here too. In case you were curious.”

“Have you seen them?”

She shook her head. “But Wayne mentioned ‘Roth’ once, and ‘Benicia’ twice, to Kells. And he talked about them in the present tense.”

I swelled with relief. My throat tightened and ached and I felt like I might cry, but no tears came. “What about Noah?” I blurted out the question before I could think about whether I really wanted the answer.

The girl knew. “Kells mentioned him once.”

But my question had gone unanswered. And now I had to know. “Tell me what she said.”

“She said—” The girl didn’t finish her sentence. Something hissed and clicked behind me, and she went still.

“What?” I asked. “What did she say?”

She didn’t answer. When she spoke again, her voice shook. “They’re here,” the girl said, and then she was gone.

You don’t love me.

No, you love a me you have made up in your head; a fantasy.

You don’t love my flashbacks at 3am, when I’m crying and shaking and terrified.
You don’t love the panic attacks that follow.
You don’t love the scars or
The arm that cries out for release on nights
When I know I am worthless.
You don’t love my silence, the defeating depression that lasts for days
When I am a prisoner in my own body.

You don’t love me.

You love the girl you see in photos, pouting and smiling for a world that doesn’t exist. You love the girl you’d fuck for half an hour and leave. You love the girl you imagine I am when I post poetry about moaning a name that could be yours.
You love a girl who is fiction. A dream you want to live out in some parallel universe where we can photoshop reality.

Nobody could ever love the real me.

—  but I really wish someone would try

anonymous asked:

how did you come out to your parents?

Well, I told them 3 years ago because they kept bothering about my scarf a friend gave me. It got into an argument and then my parents asked me “do you even like girls?” I told them I was into guys and I forgot what happened between the time, but I got upset and went to my room. I expected them to come over and talk to me about it but no one came; so I just went to sleep. I always dreaded the moment it would come because I knew they never liked having a gay son.They were in such denial that they kept hinting me like “oh look over there, she’s good looking for you!” , “why are you watching a woman’s show?” , or “don’t move your hand like a girl, you’re not a girl” from time to time and it’s so TIRESOME. Every day I have to fabricate this lie just to get through my normal day, it’s exhausting. Some people say “why don’t you just be yourself?” I’m fearful of how people react, how many people I lose just because of my sexuality. Some people have very supportive families, mine, not so much. I feel like a prisoner in my own body, MY OWN BODY. Sometimes I just want to let go of it all because that’s the most painless way out. Just to pull the cord. But there’s so much to do, and so much to achieve in life that the thought ceases to exist.

It’s just unfortunate that my family thinks like that. I’m so drained from all the bullshit I have to go through even when living in a privileged household. It’s a huge burden that I possess in order to get through my day without dealing with unnecessary nonsense. My parents still deny that I’m gay even today after I told them numerous times. It’s challenging and I’m struggling but in the end, I’m very hopeful and optimistic about the future, and I know I’ll get through all the hardships still to come.