Thursday, October 6, 2011

Do You See Her?

See that?

That's a woman with four years of amazing experiences, strong work ethic, and blood, sweat, tears, and hard work that paid off quite well. A perfect uniform with a perfect bun and a confident stride that "screams well-seasoned bad ass".

Look at her again.

Look beneath that perfect bun, that perfect uniform, that confident stride, that haunting gaze that never quite meets your eyes. Do you see her?

Do you see the young girl, broken, scared, and hurting?

Do you see the fear? Of bathrooms. Of dark shadows. Of babies.

Do you see the sting of words, like a cat-o-nine tails against the soul? Words of people that don't understand? Of people that don't care? Of people that thrive on negativity? Of people that condemn but don't listen?

Do you see the burden of friendships? Of friendships that are no more? That haven't a chance? That aren't even real except for the sake of a more comfortable workplace? That couldn't bare the weight of grief?

Do you see the shattered dreams? The babies that could never be. The friends that left too soon. The futures that will never happen? All because death and divorce got in the way?

Do you see the battle with weight? Not because she thinks she's fat, but because she is hated for being skinny? Because eating healthy means "dieting"? Because 128 pounds in full utility uniforms at 5 months pregnant is "not good enough"?

Do you see the red sunken eyes from a day of crying from pure dread of returning to another night of work? Crying to make the bruises feel better? Crying to forget the toll this job takes on the body? Crying in fear of the toll it takes on her ability to carry a healthy baby? A baby that has a chance to live?

Do you see the scalding marks from the hot showers trying to burn away the yucky feelings of insecurity, weakness, bruises, and failure? Trying to burn away every regret, every mistake, every nightmare? Trying to burn it all away until the water runs cold but the tears have made her so numb she can't feel the difference?

Do you see the loss of innocence, the loss of faith, from marrying her best friend only to be met with clenched fists and guns stuffed in the couch? Do you see the sleepless nights that still come from the fear of those angry fits, even though he is long gone?

Do you see the pain that drives her forward, just trying to prove she can make it through another day? Do you see the social anxiety she tries to hide with a smile? Do you see the effort it takes to bust her ass at work so that you will approve of her abilities and stop treating her like a child, when all she really wants to do is hide under her blankets and pretend this nightmare never happened?





When you see her, what do you see?

5 comments:

Colin's Daddy said...

Nika,

Very moving post. I only know you through the comments you leave on my blog, but I can "see" that woman behind the front put up to protect herself and "protect" society from what lies underneath. I can also see the woman who is trying like hell to live life again and appreciate everything she has while never forgetting what she has lost. While it is never easy to see the pain and struggle in another person, once you have seen it in yourself, it is very recognizable in another.

All the best,
Steven

Nikki said...

I see a beautiful mother, a true spirit, and a loving soul. <3 It's so, so, so hard-- life and living without your babies. Sometimes the struggle is what keeps our children close in mind and even closer in heart. Much love, Nikki

Sarah said...

It's funny the skins we walk around in. The skins that everyone else sees that hide all of the things inside that we really are.

Sending love your way.

Sarah

Mandy said...

I have taken some time for you post to simmer before responding. It is a very intimate portrait of yourself and I am touched to be able to share it. What I see is a woman, a mother, who is hurting so badly. I feel your pain and sadness in your words and not just in this post. It makes me honestly wish there was something, anything I could do to shoulder just a little bit of it for you for a while. No one deserves to suffer so much. One thing that also has come through clearly is that you are tough and you are committed. Those are admirable qualities and they are real even if they may seem "put on" to you. You honor your precious babies in everything you do.

At the risk of sounding silly or petty, have you tried meditation, yoga or hypnosis to help with the flashbacks and your sleeping problems?

Take care,
Mandy

Nika M. said...

Mandy,
I was doing pilates for a while, and it seemed to help a lot. But then everything else got in the way and it got pushed aside, mostly because of my work schedule. I've been thinking about trying yoga for a while, but I just haven't done it yet. I have to find something that works with my crazy schedule, at least long enough for me to learn what I'm doing well enough to do it on my own.

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