When I was younger, I was told that there is too much inside of me. That I have feelings where others have bone. At the age of seven, a doctor tapped inside my head and asked, “Do you choke on memories from time to time? Do you cry for no good reason at all? Do words take a hammer to your head and crack your skull?” Yes, yes, yes, I nodded. “Then you’ve definitely got them,” he said, as he checked off a box on his list. “Too many feelings. What a shame. Try not to keep them inside or you’ll drown.”
For awhile, I tried to follow his advice by pouring my feelings into boys’ mouthes until I was numb to the memory of ever being over-filled. I let myself go weak in their arms and became a hickey-covered exhale. But no matter how many times I offered my mouth like a flower to be plucked, the feelings spurted from my chest and soaked whoever came close in words.
I tried to expel my feelings by punching them out of my throat and using ink to exorcise them from my chest, but still, they covered me in tear-stained scars and left me to whither alone in the back of bars. Still, they had me running towards strangers’ cars, asking them if they knew how I could rid myself of my weak heart.
Finally, having had enough, I took a train outside my hometown to shed everything I cared about. On a grey beach, I dumped all of the feelings which threatened to keep me from living normally. Then came the moment when I had to decide if I would rather be liked or be who I am-too sensitive, too quiet, too honest, too burdened. And still undecided, I have not opened my mouth since.
literally, ignore them.
don’t invite any parts of them into your space.