My name is Jamilah, and I am a broken vase trying to recreate itself and become whole again.
This past Monday, I uploaded a video on my main channel called “This Is Why I Was Gone For Six Months (twice),” which ended up being very therapeutic:
There was a lot of stuff cut out of the video that I wanted to keep in, which kind of explains why I’m crying in one clip and perfectly fine in the next. I don’t want anyone to pity me or think this video is fake; trust me, if I could help it, I would not have cried at all, but my overly emotional self didn’t let that happen. Anyway, in the video, I talk about my reasons for leaving (twice), my relationship with my mom, a little bit about my childhood, and revealed that I went to counseling.
There was so much more I wanted to say and keep in the video, so that’s what this blog post is– a therapeutic, venting session that’s pretty much an extension of the above video. Even though this is an extension, I still might not add everything I want to, but once my memory allows, it’ll all be out there. Just like most of my other posts, it’s going to be all over the place, but did you expect anything else?
First off, something I really wanted to talk about in the video was my anxiety, but I think I might just make a separate video about it either on my main channel or my vlog channel; this will just be brief. My anxiety is so intense and so horrible; I genuinely hate having anxiety, but… I have it. My social anxiety is the worst thing to ever exist, and I honestly think it’s why I’m so socially awkward. I have such a difficult time making new friends and even making small talk with customers at work. Literally, after every brief conversation I have with a customer, I shake my head at myself. I am constantly asking myself, “What is wrong with me?” Going off of that, even when I have made a potential friend, I have such a hard time trusting people. Like, I anticipate when someone is going to let me down, and I know for a fact this developed over my younger years because I was let down a lot; out of everyone I lived with, I could only fully trust my fully biological sister.
Moving on from my anxiety to my depression (what a beautiful transition), I was severely depressed from around sixth grade until I left for college, and it is still something I am trying to overcome; however, I am waaaaay better than I was. There were definitely moments when it showed, but I tried my hardest to make sure it didn’t. I didn’t want my burdens to become someone else’s burdens. There were things that were said and done in my childhood that I definitely shouldn’t share with the Internet. There were (and still kind of are) secrets I had to promise not to share and pretty much have to bury with me; although, I feel like I’m going to spill them to someone someday because I need the relief. The depression stemmed from my family life, as in the people I lived with, as well as the secrets and unmentionables. My parents are divorced, and I was not allowed/given permission to live with my dad, even though I tried and asked several times. Honestly, my mom should be happy I didn’t attempt to run away because I thought about it a lot, especially in the later years.
Anyway, as I stated in the video, I wasn’t a perfect child, and I honestly don’t think a perfect child exists. Every kid has gotten in trouble at least once. Despite my imperfection, my childhood wasn’t good; it was simply okayish. I was ready to escape it… if you know what I mean. If you don’t, I tried to commit suicide three times. The first time was when I was nine; I didn’t know an effective method besides hanging myself, which scared me. Instead, I used a simple pair of safety scissors, which did nothing but make my skin ashy and red and achy. When I was twelve, I viciously rubbed a butter knife on my wrist and hoped for the best, but I only got little droplets of blood; it just looked like a small cat scratch. The last time I tried was when I was sixteen, just three years ago. Each time I tried was on a visible vein (on different parts of my body), and this time, I used a razor blade. I started bleeding immediately, and it scared every bone in my body. I’m not sure how long it took to stop the bleeding, but putting a band-aid on the cuts didn’t make the bleeding stop instantly. Fortunately, I get darker in the summer and wear long sleeves in the winter, so you can’t see my scars; they’re also fading, which is really great. After the third time, I started counting down the days until I could leave for college and gain some independence, which I did thankfully.
The unmentionable words and events of my childhood kind of destroyed me. During my first break in college (my school calls it “winter recess”), I decided to stay with my dad. Because of the divorce, we didn’t really have the chance to bond and develop a relationship. I lived with my mom for most of my life (until college time), and despite the many times we’ve tried, we just don’t have a good relationship, which I briefly talk about in the video. Anyway, back to my dad, since I’ve been staying with him every time I go back, I’ve learned how alike we are (and it’s not just because we’re both Gemini). However, there is still a strain in our relationship, which is on my part, because I’m scared of going through the same crap I’ve already gone through, even though I know my dad isn’t like that.
My childhood also killed my self-esteem; I never really had a great image of myself. There were several moments when I felt like a maid. I was so busy serving everyone else and doing what everyone wanted and hardly ever did anything for myself. My happiness was put on the back burner, and there are times, even now, when it feels really weird to be happy… almost like I shouldn’t be. Also, I’m extremely jumpy all the time. Like, my paranoia has heightened beyond belief. There are several times, especially over the past few months, that I’ll walk into a room and see someone and just immediately jump. Kind of like this (minus being tapped on the head):
Anyway, I used to dream of having a Cinderella moment, you know? I used to wait for someone to come into my life and swoop me out of my depression and misery. I imagined someone would come and take me to a better life. Sometimes I still think about it but only when I feel super lonely and get consumed by my thoughts. Anyway, I felt so restricted in that house; I was itching for freedom. Thank the Lord for college, a perfect way for me to transition into the real world while having a truckload of independence.
I’m not sure if I mentioned this previously (I know I did for sure in the video), but my mom remarried after the divorce with my dad. Calling the man she married “stepdad” or “Jake” wasn’t an option, and the same went with his daughters; I had to call them my “sisters” instead of “stepsisters.” Even though we were supposed to be one, big family, I could still feel a separation between stepkids and biological kids; there were moments when the stepkids were treated differently than the biological kids, sometimes better and other times worse. Jake’s daughters were close in age to my fully biological sister, and there were several moments when those three were treated waaaay better than me… and I’m the oldest.
To go off on a quick tangent, one thing that drove me crazy about Jake was he always questioned my virginity, especially during the later years. I’ve never been kissed. I’ve never had a boyfriend. I’ve never had sex. I’ve never been on a date. I’ve never spent legit one-on-one time with a boy, but Jake, being the disbelieving, untrusting person he is, didn’t believe me every time I told him. Not only was this man convinced I lost my virginity, but he also strongly believed I was raped, which A) constantly hurt my feelings because that hasn’t happened to me and B) is not something you should accuse anyone of, especially in this day and age. If someone has been raped or sexually assaulted, they’ll speak up about it when they’re ready; you don’t just go around accusing people. Am I right?
Anyway, going back to before the tangent took place, the treatment difference and double standards didn’t kill the relationship between my biological sister and me… most of the time. We got along great, even though she’s four years younger than me, and I think we still get along pretty good, even though we hardly talk because I’m A) four hours away and B) never going back. When I was down and really struggling, she was there.
Another person who was (and still is) there when I’m down and struggling is Maria, who I’ve known for a decade now, but our friendship didn’t really start to develop until about the seventh grade. Looking back on it, I put a lot of my emotional baggage on her, and Maria if you’re reading this, I’m so so sorry. When I really think about it, there were several times when I was a crap friend. Like, a super crappy friend. Sometimes I would take what she said and turn it back on myself. Does that make sense? Like I made any topic of conversation about me. How could I expect her to turn to me for help and emotional support when I was such a crap friend? Sometimes I said some offensive and stupid stuff and would get kind of upset when we had different opinions and views, which doesn’t make any sense and definitely isn’t how I am now. Juvenile Jamilah wasn’t stellar in the friendship department. Despite this, she was still there for me, even as I was growing and changing and going through weird phases and becoming myself. Honestly, she’s the greatest human ever; I don’t deserve her. Someone (not just anyone; someone great) needs to wife her up because she’s just that amazing and worthy of a spectacular life partner. Again, Maria, if you’re reading this, I apologize for being the worst friend (aka crap friend) when I should’ve been the best friend (aka non-crap friend). I am extremely grateful for her and our friendship, and I love her and care about her deeply. I’m four hours away from where we grew up, which is where she still is, and we’re still close friends. Dang it, now my eyes are all watery. I miss you, Maria.
*takes a couple of deep breaths*
Moving on, this is where I am right now: My mom and I don’t contact each other much; sometimes we email each other but not enough. I see my sister whenever she’s with my grandparents while I’m with them, and we email each other sometimes, more recently than before. I don’t have my sister on any social media accounts (her decision), and I blocked my mom and stepsisters and Jake on all social platforms (my decision). It’s going to take time to heal and forget, but I have forgiven them. Maria and I are still friends. 🙂
Over a year has gone by with me being away from my past and my childhood, and I’m getting better. I’m still a bit broken, but the new vase is coming together beautifully. All the pieces are there; I just need some extra-strength glue.