Kay T Jewels: The Who am I essay, Part One

This is part of a personal story that will be shared in segments.

 

“Who am I? “Is a complicated question for anyone to answer isn’t it?

The very first time I wrote something about who I was, this is what I wrote.

Growing up there were many hurdles I had to overcome. Often times my life with filled with hardship and strife. I remember more than one time when money was tight. I knew right away that I could be bright because I knew immediately that things weren’t right.

My house was always a pit and this did not get any better after my dad split. My mom always worked harder than one woman should. She gave us everything she possibly could. I learned early in life to be rough, that you had to be tough and made of the most solid stuff.

At school I never got along, I always felt as if I didn’t belong. This was place I never fit in and was made to believe that I would never win. Soon the boredom began to kick in and they labeled me dumb and defect instead of comfortable numb. Soon after this I was then further condemned as crazy and misunderstood. I called them ignorant, after all it is them who can’t understand me isn’t it?

I am the type of person to say it how it is even if it means a little bit of pain. Yet I will go that extra mile just to see a care free smile. So what if I live my life in denial. When your world moves as fast as mine mind revolves you would be confused to. Confusion mounting, my anger building my fire explodes.

Looking up to all the right people I saw all the wrong things. I learned to be hard and cutthroat as well as sweet and nice while I do you in. My father taught me young to use my silence as my punishment and my words as my weapon. He warned only draw your sword if you ready to kill.

Of course on the outside everything looked swell but, on the outside it was a living hell.

That was when I was 14, when I first fell prey to the question of Who am I? Why it was so confusing was because my real question was more like “Am I her?  Or am I her?” I never gave thought to the fact that if I wasn’t either there had to be three of us to start with.

Daddies little girl Kristen wanted to get married, have kids the white picket fence. Sweet, shy, quiet and thoughtful Kristen was. She was smart and studious, she read books and watched animal planet. She liked to stay at home cook and clean. It was in her nature to be this way.

She wrote at 16 on a pad of white lined paper with black pen

Dear someone who cares,

This morning when I woke up I looked right into my mirror. The reflection that stared back at me was the face of a perfect stranger. The eyes I had seen only days ago that were filled with happiness and anticipation of my fiancés return had vanished.

Looking back on it this birthday was almost perfect, I was with the one I love and together we spread the news of our wedding in the following spring. Each moment we spent loving each other; even doing nothing at all we had the best of time doing it together.

In my mind nothing could have gotten in my way of this marriage. However as I had learned on his last trip home our time was limited and would soon come to end. The clock seemed to tick louder and faster than ever before pushing us closer into the next day. Days before he left I began to crack inside my heart could no longer hold in my pain.

On our last night we drove to look out point, a place I had shown him long ago. Never before was there so much silence to fill, the radio played songs we had long forgotten about. As I looked out at the night sky, the stars seemed to cry for the injustice of it all. Planes departed from miles away their lights seemingly fade into the darkness. As we watched them leave from miles away our hearts beat faster knowing that on the morrow one of those very planes would be taken him away.

On the way home to pack I would swear that we drove slower than ever before. Just so we could just hold onto the night for a moment longer. Pulling into my driveway, parking the car I invited him into my empty home. I collected my stuff into a pile and set it aside for a while. The lights were low; curtains drawn and the dark seem to fit me just right.

As I walked into the kitchen the thought came to my mind that this was the last time for a long time we would stand together in the only house that I called home. My heart just burst, I sobbed out words he could not understand. He held me tight in his loving arms. The only safety I had ever known since my dad left years ago. When I could no longer stand he carried me to the couch, as the tears swelled over my eyes running like waterfalls down my face.

As I cried, I tried to say everything I could but could only sputter words of pain and sorrow. In those moments I cried because he had to leave, I cried about how unfair it all was, I was angry that I had no choice the matter. I grieved for all I had lost, all the lonely nights I was about to endure, I resented that he had done this to me knowing how much I needed him. I screamed out all my pain and cried a million tears one after another.

He held me and made a thousand promises; he said we would be together soon. He kissed me and told me of the days when we would be man and wife. He told me of the years of happiness we would share if only we could part this one more time.

My tears slowed to a drizzle and I gasped for the air that would give me the strength.

That night he and I made promises to each other that nothing would get in the way. We left my house full of sadness yet we had hope. We left my home and went to his house to pack has stuff. When I got there I could not watch him pack so I got in the shower and cried. Hot shower water washing away my salty tears as I sat in the tub and attempted to regain my strength.

I got into bed that night; I crawled under the sheets and just watched him silently. When it was all packed away he crawled into bed. He held me thru the rest of the night as I cried out in silent tears…

As dawn made its approach we wake from our trance. As he got ready I studied everything about him. The sun approached the horizon and we said our goodbyes. Our last kiss seemed to go on forever, each of us holding on to the moment as long as we possibly could.

It isn’t long until she writes again maybe three months at most. Her hand shook as she wrote, this letter was barely legible and in an envelope. The envelope was addressed to her fiancé in Okinawa, Japan. However it was never mailed.

Imprisoned in this lonely love, lie alone in my bed crying softly to Jesus.

Jesus, why is what I do not know, does my heart ache me so?

I can only say that I knew from the start that this would rip us apart, this I know is all wrong. For how could we love for so long, grow to be so strong only to have it all be gone. The loneliness I bear has become so unfair. Since the day that we did part the pain has not left my heart. How can the love that we shared so easily have disappeared?

Though the pain is great it is only the distance I have come to hate. You are all I know, I cannot believe I let you go. However I know that if I had said “no” your resentment would only grow.

Time has passed as it is known to do, it’s only fail is failing to bring me closer to you. With miles between us and oceans apart for one night of play you throw it all away.

Lying just beyond your reach is the faith that you made me preach. When confessing your sins, you only showed me where my pain begins. Burning in my eyes is the painful vision of our demise. Though I’m tempted to hide for you see, what you stole was my pride. My honor demands, I do the right thing so to you it is forgiveness I bring.

This hurt me bad, it made me mad but, I will not destroy the love that we had. I refuse to loose what I love so much. There are nights I turn and toss over the lessons learned and all the loss.

Looking past my pain and sorrow, I never fail to see a brighter tomorrow. I hope and pray each and every day, with forgiveness in my heart and remorse in your eyes, that we never do part, that our love never dies.

So I will tell you now that I love you no less than I did before. I may even love you a little bit more. I rest assured knowing for all the pain and suffering I have endured, there at the end will be a beautiful reward.

She wasn’t aware that there was another who looked just like her, Krissy.

She was mischievous at times silly; she would even say and do inappropriate things. She liked to hang with boys twice her age, party all night and get wasted. For fun she would play pranks on unsuspecting people and help others get revenge.  She was a fast talker and an even faster mover, could lie, steal and cheat with the best of them. She could steal you blind and when she was done all that you would notice was missing was her beautiful face. She was what we like to call a fire starter…

She was very aware of her counterpart Kristen, and was totally against her plans. Her idea was to get the hell out of town as soon as she could, any way she had to. She had a plan B, and she liked it better. Kristen’s plan was already failing anyhow so she took it upon herself to act on the 1st of January 2001.

Krissy writes in her very own black leather journal.  She kept it in a removable floor board at her my mother’s house, back then. In april that year she writes with nice big happy lettering and in blue pen at age 18…

Dear Secret Keeper,
All though he told me not to eat the forbidden fruit, from the forsaken tree of knowledge when your lips hit my skin, I throw caution to the wind. As the waves of pleasure rise from within, I look deep into your eyes and I can see the face of my demise. Lying just beyond my reach is the faith that we so often preach. Nevertheless with one kiss from your lips of sin, I seal my fate and eat the forbidden fruit. I sigh with relief as I say to myself, that only your lips of sin could taste as sweet as the forbidden fruit.

This is a secret that nobody knows you make me feel so good inside that my heart literally glows. I can’t help but sigh when you touch my thigh. For it feels so good to have you near, it’s a feeling I can hardly bear. As I run my fingers thru your hair, I say I silent prayer that you will always be here and always care. You’re so kind to me all of the time, sweet are your kisses soft are your cresses, this is how I know you really do care. Do I deserve this happiness I feel when you are near? I hope you can see how much you mean to me, I know I don’t say it often enough as this is hard for me. When I know you won’t stay longer than a day, how can I just let you take my heart away?

These are the secrets I can no longer hide, for it hurts too much to keep them inside

Krissy

Then there was K, and she was constantly being forced into one of their lives.  She tried to fit as best as she could but neither would do. Quite like Cinderella’s shoe, in fact. Day after day she tried to fit but it never felt right, it was always too tight. She always felt so hollow and empty, she never could imagine…. Why?

Krissy was also aware of K and often played referee when needed to keep everyone peaceful and unknowing of the truth. K was aware of Krissy and Kristen’s radically different lives but didn’t have a clue which way to go. She really did not know what to do. She certainly liked the idea of getting out of here. However just didn’t know how to go about it. When Krissy told K about plan B and enlisted her aid K had no idea what she was getting into. She soon fell in love with a man and it wasn’t long before the war began.

K writes in a leather bound journal by her bed in a slightly messy print,

Dear someone who cares,

Just as a kaleidoscope turns my mind spins, I try to listen to the many conversations within. Debating inside which feelings to hide, most times even I can’t decide where my heart will reside.  There is mass confusion between the reality and the illusion, a self-created delusion that there is order in confusion.

Careful emotions can be deceiving; they can have your heart and mind misbelieving. Try to look past all the colors and see the black and white. Go on go into the light, make and attempt to make everything all right.

I can’t sleep at night, all I hear is an endless fight between wrong and right. Battles are won and lost here every day; I never know which way I will sway or where my heart will stay.

How can I live this way? How I feel changing from day to day in so many conflicting ways. Looking thru the daze into the hate haze, I can still see an endless maze.

My trust in life has been shattered, tossed and kicked about like it never even mattered. Torn to shreds and burned to ash, too many forgotten, to many I haven’t forgotten. I think all you people are rotten.

It will never be the same; it will always be a game. Look at all the games we must play, look at all the hateful things I must say. I can see that underneath your skin you’re just a snake. You must lie in wait just to spread your viscous hate.

A beautiful yet tortured soul, restless and disconnected from all the rest. I tried so hard I gave it my best no matter how hard I tried I could not pass God’s tests. Sleepless nights and endless fights, it seemed as though I could never get it just right. The point of life makes no sense to me since it is only filled with pain sorrow hardships and strives.

I hope that on the morrow that this will end. I do not fear death I welcome it with open arms. If this isn’t hell I don’t know what is, for that is what it feels like to me. Anything would be better than the life god created for me.

I pray that someday my feelings will change but, as for right now I think this life is all fucked up and deranged.

As that year continued the mind grew sicker and sicker and I grew more desperate than ever to escape home, I was so confused.

Krissy didn’t dare tell a soul what had happened. Soon Krissy began making hurried mistakes to cover her tracks, not even looking at the stakes; she fell into a trap that nearly killed us all.

I remember that day long ago about 2002 I was then 19. Terrible things began to happen, one after the other. Soon the wall started to fall; soon it would all come tumbling in on me. In the moment I realized what was happening, I suddenly could remember it all. What I saw was so terrible, I saw not only the present I saw the past.

However now I can barely remember what it actually was. So I will just tell you the things I can remember, which is this.

Trying to find the words to describe how I felt then realizing that there were none. The pain so deep, the sadness so great, I went deep into myself, into my soul. I heard the words and saw the actions, but I just couldn’t comprehend. Where did the love go, why was it all gone, will it ever be okay again? It grieved me, it pained me, almost broke me.

Was it all an illusion, did you only feed my delusions; my mind was spinning in revolutions’. In that moment I was humbled, I had been broken, my spirit was crumpled. My legs felt weak beneath me, my feet felt like lead on the ground, but the girl inside my head said,

‘Run child, run fast, don’t stop until you are free, do not look back run, run, run with me.’

So I set my feet on the floor, I looked around to set my path. Without another thought, I ran as fast as I could. One foot in front of the other and suddenly I felt like was flying. Feet pounding on the ground, slamming the cement, heart racing, and adrenaline pumping I went on.

The pain in my heart eased a little with each step, the rain hitting my face felt like ice. I felt little of it, as I ran the whole night thru. Tears streaked my face the wind burned my cheeks but, it did not stop me. I just kept running until the breath ran right out of me. I did not look back, I just ran blindly, wet with rain and tears, filled with pain and fears.

When the sun came up, I fell asleep in the park. my eyes closed from fatigue the world grew dark.

He came to me, and said

“Everything seems so dark right now, times seem so gray. Do not lose your way, do not let the pain and sadness block out the light. Don’t give up the fight.  Look around for signs that I am near, for I am with you every breath you draw, you are never without me, I am always here, always near. Do not have fear. You may feel alone and sad but, I promise this won’t always be. Some day you will be with me. You will think of these terrible times you had and won’t remember the pains you have had. “

I cried out in my sleep, I moaned and begged him to come for me. He did not take me.

When I woke, the sun had fallen behind the horizon and the sky was filled with pink and yellow streaks. Calm had come over me, nevertheless my heart was heavy, yet it seemed possible to go on. The pain almost felt gone, I was numbed in some way that I could not explain.

I didn’t realize that day when I woke, with those first words I spoke, that it had all but gone away. It felt like they were all in place, but really what I had done was locked them in that special space. I was a clean slate, and I was no longer was filled with only hate. I had managed to forget the pain but the facts still remained.

What an odd feeling it was to wake up one day, and not have a memory of your own personal history. To not really notice that I didn’t remember why I was so sad for so long like I did that day. To just know that you are who you are, because you know it. Not because you remember what made you what you are.

Ten years came and past before anyone but me knew anything about the mirror and me. Even the therapist I began seeing that next day in July of 2002 didn’t quite know what to do. The mirror suddenly spoke very clearly to me that day as I passed it by and for every day after that. I didn’t tell a soul what was really going on in the mirror I did not dare. My biggest fear is they would try to lock me up again. I still don’t why but I never touched a black pen again after that day.

Every day I encountered the girl in the mirror with skepticism but, her smile was so inviting and her conversation so stimulating. She spoke as if she knew my intimate thoughts and desires. Her face was not of mine, it was slightly different in an alluring kind of way. She had a way of calming my anxiety and soothing my fears with her wooing ways.

It wasn’t long before I went looking for her when I was worried or scared. She was so comforting and she seemed to have all my answers. How could it be that the mirror knew me? How could the mirror have the answers to my heart? It was tearing me apart and making me mad. To look at the mirror and not recognize the girl who stared back. To not feel the feelings she was telling me I had.

Who was that girl in the mirror, and where did she go? Who are you, and why are you here? You’re not so nice and hardly pretty at all. Why did she leave, and where have you come from? I hadn’t a clue that there were more of you…

“Well of course you can’t forget about me. There is you and her, and then of course there is me. That is what makes us three.”  The older woman in the mirror said to me.

“What do you mean us and three I thought it was only her and me?” I replied to her in my head

“Well of course can’t you see? You can’t live without me. I inspire you to go on when you are about to expire, I stay awake when you tire, I scream out when you are angry, and I protect you from all hazards and dangers. I help you make tough choices and hard decisions. I take all your pain and make you feel none. I hide all those terrible secrets while you know none. Can’t you see you need me as well as her and twice as much as far as I can see?”

“Ha, Ha she only says that cause she can. Why don’t you shut her up for good? She has always been a rotten little goodie too shoes. Kissing ass and being all prim and proper, making everyone think she’s sooo good. Well.. She might be smart and cold as ice but she isn’t nice or sexy like me. She’s a prude, as well as a tight ass, never has any fun. Doing things the right way doesn’t always pay. In fact the odds are against the nice guy. I mean if she was in charge we still be virgins, with no friends at all” Said the beautiful woman staring back

“Well…” I said suddenly aware it was my turn to comment “I think you both are great but, will you get the fuck out of my head?”

I stayed in weekly therapy from that day on for 6 years or more. I went weekly sometimes by weekly appointments. Even on the days I had to walk six miles, or I had slept on the streets, nothing stopped me. The medications helped a little but not much. Therapy helped me heal a lot of the pain I felt about first 19 years of my life

I didn’t know I talked in the mirror at first, but I always have. For as long as I remember I have looked in the mirror and heard a voice. It’s not like a voice but rather more like their own trains of thought in the form of dialogue inside my head. So always there are two trains of thoughts in my head, that are not my own.  I was always aware of Krissy or Kristen lives. I just wasn’t aware that they were different people. Especially for the first years of my life, I thought everyone was like me.

As for what I can remember I know some of facts of my life, but not all of them. So many parts of my life are unknown to me, how many are even unknown.

I didn’t realize at first that I had amnesia; I just knew something wasn’t right. When I knew I should feel something and I didn’t, or people I trusted told me I did things that I had no idea I had done. I didn’t recognize people, sometimes significant people, or was recognized by someone I did not know. Or suddenly I had no feelings about something that was really important yesterday. The scariest is waking up in your lovers arm and being pretty sure you fell asleep at home the night before. I was oblivious to the fact that I was having time gaps and memory losses. However the more these things happened the more frightened I got.

Since my life was often fraught with confusion I always chalked it up to this or that. It wasn’t until my life slowed down, that I was able to see what my own writings were telling me. It was clear that I had feelings that were there, and sometimes memories would resurface at odd times. A smell or an object would resurface a memory I had long forgotten about.

Since I felt like I knew the significant facts, I never questioned my memory. In fact I relied upon my memory, as it is reportedly photographic in nature. How would someone with photographic memory, also have huge memory losses?  I can recant a book years after reading, and see the objects in a room years after leaving. How could I be missing memory?  It sounded so contrary I never would have believed it. However I picked it apart and I almost have no memories of my life at all, just feelings that I have had them.

When I look back at my life, I have pictures in my mind but, only a few. The ones I do have are very precious to me. I see faces and places, times and spaces of my life, all picture form.  More often than not I can I bring to memory someone telling me what I have done, the expression on their face. My mind can build a moving picture of a story you have told and plant it as my memory. However these memories play in their perspective though, not in my own. If you ask me to find memories that are mine and mine alone.  All I can recall is memory of the facts, absent of the feelings associated with them.

 

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