The death of Christmas Magic

This year, I decided not to celebrate Christmas. At least, not the way I used to in the past years.

For the past six years, I would host several Christmas parties every year, listen to the music starting in November, buy all the holidays related shit I could find, I needed to own it. I was watching all the Christmas movies I could find, Hallmark ones and all. It was an obsession. I wanted to succeed at Christmas. I would have done everything to have this Christmas Magic feeling back, only for a minute. Holding it and never letting go. Only to be disappointed once more every year. Nothing could even compete with this level of expectation. Christmas came with this mix of dread, hope and disappointment. This massive source of stress and expectations, ending the holidays emotionally and physically exhausted and sad. Usually followed by the winter months of depression.

I had been reflecting on the moment this Christmas Magic feeling vanished for me lately. I can almost certainly pin it back to the year my grand-mother died, 14 years ago. Christmases were never the same after. I just only realized this, all those years later. Ever since, I have been chasing these feelings of amazement, sparkles, being swiped off your feet. Moments that would leave you breathless, full of wonder, grateful. I know I will never see my grand-mother again, but I think a part of me died when she did. Now, it is up to me to make this holiday my own.

This year, due to several circonstances, I decided to not celebrate. I tuned it down to minimum, mostly on my expectations. No gifts, no decorations, limited parties. Very low dose of Christmas music, which I realize really just makes me feel sad for now. Same goes for Christmas movies, especially Hallmark or romantic related ones. I see this as a break. Perhaps, one day, I will find a new meaning to this Christmas Magic; have healthier expectations, closer to reality. But for now, it is easier to take a step back from this collective madness that can be Christmas, with the holiday stress of diners, gifts giving, overspending, and just focus on the present time.

I used to think that you could win or fail at Christmas. I valued this holiday above all the others. I wanted to be the Christmas Queen. It was the time of the year where I HAD to be happy and spread the cheers. Giving a lot of presents, homemade gifts, thoughtful cards. I focused so much on making it perfect, looking everywhere for a feeling that doesn’t exist, that I ended up missing everything. I would feel resentment at times, sadness and unfilled needs I couldn’t identify at others. I don’t want to become bitter, become a Grinch. I just want to be happy.

I wish everyone happy holidays, may they be jolly and bright, whatever it means to you. Whether you are lonely or working or away during this period, remember that you are not alone. It is a time to reflect on the past year and the one to come. Spend it with the ones you care for and that love you as you are. It doesn’t have to be your blood family. And if you don’t feel safe celebrating this year, it’s okay to take a break, skip parties, not giving gifts. You don’t owe anymore. Take care of yourself first. This is the best gift you could ever give yourself.

Love

– Cynical Mermaid.

Letter to a friend

For days, I have been writing this letter to you

Words spining in my head

Bitter words between two strangers

 

Too afraid of what words would come out

Of undressing my soul to your unwilling eyes

Afraid of losing a friend I have yet to make

 

By my own agenda I have been blinded

Yet again by my own game, I was cheated

From my own mind chaos, I ran to perdition

 

For days, I wondered and pondered

If I can make it through

If I can be a good friend to you

 

For days, I have sighed and waited

For the words you will never say

For an answer, a give away

 

By my own accord, I keep suffering

Masochistic nature allowing status quo

Dichotomy of the heart and the mind

 

Reconciling feelings unrequited,

Expectations bound to be disappointed.

Heartbreak of a relationship that never was.

 

To continue living a lie and wish to quiet my heart,

To fear of missing out on the wonderful things you have yet to bring

Turning this dilemma in my head to a solution where there is no win

 

To a letter, that may never be written

Words, you may never know.

This heartbreak I shall bear on my own

Uneven ground of the heart

I can’t trust my feelings

I can’t trust my heart content

I can’t trust what’s in my head

 

Lying voices haunting me

Your face blurred in the mind chaos

I can’t find the true North of my heart

 

It always point back to you

Head full of you,

Full of a life that will never be

 

Living a life of endless lies

Skin crackling from stretched grins

Dead eyes under the shadows

 

Unbairn babies crying in the dark

The screams of my mind so loud

As loud as the Banshee inside me

 

Uneven ground

Dizzy spell

I wait for the words you shall never say

Brain dump 1

You here

Me there

Separated by more than an ocean

 

Light years apart

In my mind

In my heart

 

Feelings uncompromised

Complicated lifeness

 

Worlds upside down

My head is spinning

 

Full of you

Full of us

Full of things that will never be

 

We speak the same language

Yet we can’t understand each other

Old pictures and mental breakdown

Trigger Warning: This post contains mention of self-harm, suicidal ideations and fat-shaming that can be triggering to some readers.

With the holidays coming, a lot of pictures will soon enough flood our media feeds. It is a good time to remind ourselves to be mindful and compassionate when confronted with our own reflection. Especially when we struggle with poor self-image and body issue. Be kind to yourself. Don’t be too harsh. Your perception toward the pictures is a distortion sent by your lying brain, your personal mind chaos. These voices are not true. Do not listen to them. You are so much more.

A cautionary tale

A few days ago, my mother sent me pictures of myself from 6 years ago. Although I was already a little sensitive that day, I never expected to react this way. It hit me in the face like a brick. Seeing myself like this completely threw me back into a cycle of self-loathing and disgust I had thought I left behind. How was I wrong.

I couldn’t help but focused on the ugly, the fat, the imperfections. My eyes could only fix on the enormous double chin, the arm fat, the ugly face, the crooked smile, the flawed skin. All the internalized fat-shaming I had been fighting for the past year came down rushing at once, leaving me extraordinarily distressed.

I broke down in tears. I was hurt, in pain. Seeing my own reflections made me spiral down right into the darkest of darks. All the past came rushing back to my mind. I wanted to hurt myself. I wanted to put a knife through my body, cut the extra (disgusting) fat. I wanted to kill myself.

Over a year of work ruined over a few wedding pictures. On them, I was smiling. I was dancing. I was loved. I could only focus on what wasn’t suppose to be. How my feelings about myself are still so unresolved. How I pretend I am okay, but in the end, seeing myself still distresses and disgusts me. I came to the realization that the progress I thought I had made were mostly avoidance.

The mind chaos was spiralling intensely, filling my thoughts with lies.

“You are so gross”

“Look at that fat face, that crooked smile”

“Look at this double chin the size of the everest”

“Nobody loves you”

“You have no friends because you’re fat”

“You deserve to hurt yourself”

I knew I would not get out of this on my own this time. I called my person. He knew something was wrong. Over the tears, I told him what had happened, how I felt, all the violence and pain I wanted to inflict on my body. All the pain and punishment it needed, for being different. For being bigger.

He was listening, trying to reassure me. His voice was soothing. Until he asked what I had trained him to do: “Do you want to go to the hospital?” I thought about it for a few seconds. Maybe.

It also felt like the slap in the face I needed to ground myself back to reality. No, I did not wanted to go. I would be okay. I was not alone. I had the tools to move past this. I only forgot them for a moment. After we hung up, much calmer, I finished what I had to do, already feeling better. I noted my train of thoughts, and realized the magnitude of the work left to be done. I was slightly discourage, but also hopeful.

Rationally, I know these are lies.

I know I am loved by my family and friends. I know my worth is not dependant from my size.

But deep down, the little girl hasn’t healed. I am still ashamed of how I look. I still believe I deserve to be hurt because of my size. The violence that came out of my internal monologue astonished me.

The irony is also that I would never say or think that about someone else. Because I know people are so much more than their appearance. That they are worthy. Valid. Important. So why can I apply the same to myself?

It also tells me I have still a long way to go toward acceptance. Toward compassion to myself. Toward self-love.

I realize I still don’t know how to love myself. I fail to see my worth as an individual, to see outside my size, my body and what it represents.

It is much easier to preach to others than to oneself.

But as I took this step backward, I hope this truly will help me forward and unlock new lies I kept as truth to myself.

We are all worthy of love, regardless of your appearance, size, gender, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, neurostatus or anything else. But above all, a life hating yourself is not a happy life. I realize this now.

If you ever feel distressed over your appearance, reach help, call a friend, call a professional, reach for me. Find your own lifeline. You are not alone. You are beautiful, we all are in our own unique ways.

Til then,

Cynical Mermaid

This image was cropped to protect the identity of the other person.