It’s been raining a long time, but for the sake of this latest bleeding heart entry, it’s been 30 days. It was raining when my partner in crime threw me out. I had no umbrella that night, so it rained literally and figuratively on my world. The only thing I understand is that my fear of this day became a reality. Fear followed me with every mistake, argument, late arrival, forgotten event, holiday, celebration, or purchased item. My fears came true. A self-full-filling prophecy. My friend discarded me. The difference between the past and today is I realize I have to walk alone and move forward. So let me be honest, the fear of not having the family I dreamed of has been plaguing me since 1989. When my false sense of security and protection shattered, I clung to whatever was close to me to not drown. My siblings, my friends, books, the honor roll etc. Whatever I could cling to and throw myself on, I did. So much until I choked the life out of everything I touched. I am just realizing that I have to walk this journey alone. I may have company at times, but I am not entitled to a friend, a companion, or even a dog to walk with me on this journey. The fear of the darkness has gripped me like a boa constrictor around my neck and my heart. I can’t make excuses anymore for what I didn’t get. And up until last month, I believed I had been saved from being alone. I had finally found the safety and support I craved. The thing is, I knew that was a lie. I knew it was what I told myself, but the truth is, I always felt like I was on the outside looking in. I had “defect” stamped on my forehead. I was the green duckling that never fit in. Anywhere. I felt like an impostor who held this image up to the world in hopes that they’d say, “She’s normal, she’s just like us”. The truth is, I’ve never been, I am not, and I’ll never be NORMAL. There is a hardness with my walk, and a vacant look in my stare. Those are defense mechanisms to ward off danger. I am actually very soft and my eyes are my mood ring. I am rough with my hands because I am heavy handed. I never felt I had pretty feminine hands, so I attacked the world in other ways. I find it hard to trust, and I am always worried someone is going to try to hurt me if I don’t keep up my defenses. I’ve been unforgiving, hypocritical, and entitled. So now, here I am again…alone. The place I sold my soul not to be. Alone. The only difference this time is I feel relieved. I felt like my life was a jar teetering on a high unstable shelf, and it came crashing down on the floor last month. I was running to catch something and I just stopped. I let what I was chasing go off into the distance. I just stopped. After standing in the rain, I picked up my bag and began walking in another direction. And for the first time in years, I slept for 7 hours straight. I don’t have to prove myself anymore. I don’t know what tomorrow holds, and that is good because from what I know, that’s God’s job anyway. Being alone is scary and it is sad. But being alone means I get to explore my own interests without the self-doubt eating away at my stomach lining. I can feel my blood pressure going down because I won’t have to bow my head in regret and failure another day. I don’t have to keep checking my phone in fear and sadness because someone didn’t call back or call at all. I don’t have to feel bad because I didn’t call to show that I care because I fear that if I don’t, you’ll say I didn’t care. All I have to do is just be. I’ve ran for years for the illusion of belonging. I’m so tired. There is a pattern emerging, and I believe it’s because I’ve held on too tight out of fear of abandonment. Fear that the end was near. Well I’ve seen the end, and shortly afterwards, a new day emerged anyway. My successes and failures don’t stop the sun from shining. My broken heart doesn’t deter the rain. But I do know I feel relief. I’ve spent my entire life trying to be the type of person worthy of love and adoration through my accomplishments. Being “good enough”. That was a fool’s errand. What happens when I just do what’s best for me? What happens when I disappoint others and they walk way? The sun comes up and the rain continues to fall. I wonder what it will feel like to get 8 hours of sleep for a year? Let’s take it one day at a time. I’ve been searching for rest and peace for my entire life. I have no idea if I am on the right path, but I know I’m not chasing an illusion anymore. I am who I am at this moment in time. I am not my past.