Sunday, July 30, 2017

Monthly Showcase - July 2017

Only one project I did this month, and that was a poem. Fortunately (or unfortunately), there's lot of backstory behind its creation.

Jade:

Stemming from the idea that we all have this little "green-eyed monster" that lives inside of all of us (maybe more like an inner-demon than something that manifests itself like the Hulk or something Jekyll and Hyde), there was a time when I was in high school where I decided to give mine a name. I imagined her just stalking around in some dark, empty place as I would run to her to fix my problems. I named her "Jade" because it rhymed with the word "blade."

Because years ago, I started cutting myself as a way to cope with whatever was wrong with me.

It was a side of me that I tried to keep hidden from people. Even until now in my diary entries, just from paranoia, I would refer to my self-injury as "talking to Jade." Of course, when it comes to having an unhealthy coping mechanism that tends to just cover up the problems instead of trying to solve them, it seriously ruined my day-to-day functions.

Luckily, the scars (both literal and figurative) from those days have faded. Those who've known, however, can still see them if they know what to look for and I'm still self-conscious about them; but just like the orthodontic work to my canines, no one really knows unless I outright tell them.

However, the urges to "talk to Jade" are still something I have to deal with on a daily basis. I've been better at handling it, and the longest period of time I've gone without self-injury was over a year and a half. It could have gone on for longer if it wasn't for a few weeks ago when my depression hit me really hard and my healthier coping mechanisms didn't seem to be helping. The problem with me and Jade... while I don't like to listen to her anymore, I still struggle with getting her out of my life completely. I know it's wrong and that it's not helping and that I could accidentally die and there's so many other complications (infection, nerve damage, scarring, etc.) but I guess in a way I got addicted to the pain and the adrenaline years ago that the temptation can't ever really leave me alone.

So that's where the poem came in. I was just frustrated with myself, kept thinking, "All that hard work to try to stop, and you go ahead and give into weakness, and now you have all this mess to clean up, and now you make sure no one finds out," blah, blah, blah. And as I've mentioned about my thoughts and I, I have this thing were if I don't get it out in writing in some form, they just won't leave me alone. It actually started out as a rant against myself, and somehow it got redirected into Jade. I continued writing, and writing, and trying to get it all out, and at some point the second stanza of the poem started forming in my head.

That second stanza was pretty much a summary of those pages of getting my frustration out (of which I've since burned, I'm still paranoid, as I said). Unfortunately, those thoughts still resonate within me, though at varying degrees of intensity, usually between the two extremes like in the first stanza. Very rarely, especially since the day I've made efforts to stop and develop better coping mechanisms and tried to face my problems head on, does "Jade's voice" ever reach thunderous levels. There used to be a time where that thunder was every single day at almost every moment.

It's strange thinking back on those days, the painstaking means I went through just so I could give in to the urge and have a short break from the negative emotions and thoughts in my head and keep myself from just feeling; if I let myself feel, then the suicidal thoughts would replace the urges and then I would have an even bigger problem. It's embarrassing to remember me getting to the point where Jade went along with me to dirty public restrooms and hiding behind corners from my friends and classmates during lunch time. I don't miss those days.

But as it was in my life, no matter how hard I try, my deepest, darkest secrets end up revealing themselves in the worst ways and at the worst times, usually because I've let them get so bad that there's absolutely no way I could keep them hidden any longer. However, I'm thankful it happened, since it helped me open my eyes to realize what's happened to me ever since I've allowed Jade to overrun my life. Because of that very embarrassing, public display (that I still think back to in horror), I've had my wake-up call before anything irreversible and severe could have happened to me.

Now, as for why I've made it so public on my blog... I have no idea why other than it's a poem that I'm pretty proud of, despite the hidden and very painful meaning behind it. I don't write poems often. Even rarer is when I actually end up liking the poem I write.

I don't intend to mention Jade anymore on this blog, however. She is, after all, the green-eyed monster I still try to keep hidden.

2 comments:

  1. Hi Jodee... I re-read "Jade," and now I'm embarrassed that I jumped to the conclusion that Jade symbolized ENVY. I should have practiced what I preach with my students: pay attention to the denotation of a poem instead of running off into the land of Symbolism.

    I am glad you are still blogging, creating, experimenting. Your writing is going to take you places... and your personal experiences will help give voice to others who have been through the same.

    :)

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    1. To be honest, when I wrote "Jade," there was a mixture of both literal and symbolic meanings since I was afraid of outting that weakness in my character, so I tried to write it in a way where those who knew, "knew." And those who didn't would take from it whatever they pleased. It's one of the fun things I've come a appreciate with writing poetry (of what little I'll ever do).

      I do hope that one day I'll do something about my writing. It still needs a lot of work though.

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