How Not To Bleed

My family should be able to rely on me.

The evidence was there just the other day. Someone was in trouble, I wasn’t called for, but I came to the rescue.

After I couldn’t solve the problem, I called the police.

And they are NOT letting me forget it.

Why did I say I was unreliable?

All the trauma I went through in my second apartment.

It isn’t the blood I shed. It was the blood others shed, and how important it was that I protect myself instead of help them.

I could have been killed. But I sacrificed my courage for my life back there.

It kills me everyday.

A movie somewhere says “there are worse things than death.”

This crow is eating at my heart. Through my brain. The memories and the emotion that comes with them. 

How it feels to stand by while your date gets robbed.

How it feels to open your home to a prostitute you don’t want to touch but you know how cold it is out there. Then to see her thrown into your only closet’s doors while she physically fights her husband. 

How you give them space.

All of the people you gave space to.

From the girl you want things from, to the guy you want nothing to do with. To the guys he came with. And the women they know that you thought you were friends with. 

Countless others.

I read a book once. It was Mother Teresa’s. “A Simple Path” is it’s title.

It stuck with me. 

But if I am trying to have her compassion, I must find it within to handle the pain that comes when they throw stones at the nun, the brother, the friar, the church, and even the priest. 

Never missing their target.

When they cut at your hands and lay siege to the small room you rent, when they hold out their hands to shake with you and you find drugs when you look at your palm.

When you break up with the crippled girl with a drinking problem who stabbed you in the back with a screwdriver, and they try to keep the two of you together.

When your broken door is held closed with a closet rod against the opposite wall and you sleep with mice and you cannot get out of the place because in all your psychosis and addiction, with your door wide open and your heart shattered by what you’ve witnessed…

Another night hits you in the face when other prostitutes hear of your den of thieves and want to turn your bathroom into a brothel.

The “brothel” matron wants to play with you. She smokes what you smoke. She needs hours of solitude in your bathroom. She needs this, she needs that.

You let a few ‘customers’ in. 

Then she meets the guy you don’t want to introduce to anyone important to you. Because he sells drugs, and will rob you, him, her, anyone. He has customers too.

They clash. He hits her. Beats her with a wooden chair. 

She survives.

The sex you have with her a week later feels empty. You don’t return to her body ever.

There’s a reason I feel weak.

A reason I have been weathered. Jaded even.

It is because my heart is open. And it has begun… to bleed.

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