humor · mental health

Doing the Blogging Thing

Alright world, I am going to see if the whole blogging thing is actually helpful. I didn’t feel like using the tutorial thing so I’ve been hitting buttons to see what happens. It seems pretty straight forward, but I’ll learn as I go. Kind of like life.

For 33 years I have battled (more like slap fights) depression, anxiety, and every other cliche mental illness. Mom is the same way, but I am getting worse over the years due to traumatizing events contributing to my special brand of crazy. In my case, nature and nurture bent me over and had their way with me.

Thanks to my wonderful ability to be invisible in the masses, I want to be shamelessly honest here. I want to really look inside my mind and lay it all out for inspection. Since I will never ever see anyone’s face, I may be able to do that here. The hard question is, where the hell do I start?

I was born in a small, redneck infested town in the Deep South. Picture your cliche redneck with a mouth full of dip, closet full of camo, and trucks as tall as a house. That is where I grew up. I hated every second.

I moved a couple hours away in 2011. They didn’t even have a GameStop yet. No, it isn’t far but it’s a place that has more than a handful of essential stores.

It’s a weird feeling to write this for myself, but still be compelled to provide background information like I don’t already know the context. I should just get down to the nitty gritty and spill the crazy. I think that’s what I’ll do. Everything else can just fall in place.

I think what people balk at most, is probably how I didn’t know what my period was until it happened. Anyone who has ever seen Return to the Blue Lagoon will understand.

First is good too, but this one is better.

I was 12. I woke up one morning, went to the bathroom, and holy cow I must be dying. Blood was everywhere. I saw someone die of internal bleeding on tv and thought that must be it. I could tell it was coming from inside.

I suppose normal people would cry for a parent, but that’s not how I roll. Ignoring the fact I wouldn’t mind dying, I would not go to a doctor.

So! What does a 12 year old whose bleeding to death do? How kind of you to ask. The only logical conclusion I could come to was stuffing my undies with toilet paper. So that’s what I did. For the next 4 years.

** I just want to take a moment to give special tribute to how incredibly disgusting and uncomfortable every second of every day I endured this was. **

After my first class, I went to the bathroom to check on things. I hoped the bleeding stopped so I wouldn’t need more TP. Obviously it had not. That is when I realized the school TP is super cheap. I needed double the amount I used before.

This became my routine over the next two weeks. That’s how long my first period lasted. I never worked up the courage to ask anyone about it, afraid they would alert someone who would force me to go to the hospital. Each passing day I assumed I would bleed to death, but that never happened.

Finally, when it stopped, I was pretty relieved. I had reached a point where I hoped for death instead of being indifferent. I could finally stop stuffing that damned TP. Oh, and by the way, I had to run in gym like that. Running was the worst.

After 6 months I had forgotten it happened. It became this weird thing of my past (because 6 months might as well be 6 years when you’re 12). Until, one day I stood up and felt liquid pouring down my legs. Here we go again.

Thankfully, after one week of stuffing TP and tying jackets around my waste when I couldn’t change it out in time, it stopped again. I was past any hope of dying. The only consolation I had was a glorious 6 month reprieve until I had to worry about it again.

It happened again the next month. And the next. And the next. Sometime after I turned 13, my best friend casually mentioned her period. After an hour on the phone trying to ask cleverly concealed questions that would lead her to telling me about what I was pretending to already know, I thought I had it figured out. I didn’t. But I was close enough to get through it at that time.

I was still too awkward to talk to Mom. We didn’t have that kind of relationship, but that’s too long an ordeal to get into.

Instead I kept stuffing TP, but for special treats I was able to borrow tampons from a friend or steal a handful from their house. I also walked to a gas station from school to buy some out of the bathroom machines. I’d save change from lunch so I could have tampons instead of TP.

At the end of my 8th grade year I was seriously stocking up on bloody panties and they were becoming a problem. I couldn’t just put them in the laundry, or throw them in the trash. I thought it would be too much work to bury them. I did the only thing I could, I flushed them.

They wouldn’t go down whole. I had to cut them into smaller pieces. It took days of flushing strips every few hours to get rid of it all.

A good chunk of time later, Dad came to my room angry and filthy. He explained something clogged the septic tank really bad, and it was going to cost a couple grand to resolve the situation.

I was an ignorant kid, I thought I was extremely lucky he didn’t know what caused it. As an adult, I understand he knew exactly what caused it, but was too embarrassed to spit it out. Instead he told me as best he could so I would understand how badly I fucked up. With that disposal option gone, I would have to be more careful in the future.

The years passed, life always full of drama, but senior year, tampons started to appear in my bathroom. Mom and I never said a word about it. I guess she figured I had to need them by now. Either way, at least my TP stuffing days were at an end.

Huh, it is nice to just get it out maybe there is something to this stuff.

29 thoughts on “Doing the Blogging Thing

  1. Your writing is excellent – just enough pathos and humor. I was brought up in a Roman Catholic/mentally ill environment and I inherited both! My mum did talk to me about periods but unlike you, I was later than everyone else and that worried me. Endometriosis and heavy periods made life miserable at times but I was very glad to get a partial hysterectomy at 45 – freedom!
    Love the expression ‘ redneck infested’!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. I just read your blog–and your writing is excellent. You write with humor about some of the saddest things. Since you are writing for your mental health–which honestly–most of us bloggers write for that reason–I will let you know, that I am praying for you–for your mental, physical, emotional and spiritual health. I followed your blog. so I will be able to keep in touch with your life, and your excellent writing and pray for you! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  3. On a curious note, I find people who struggle with depression are often the most wildly entertaining writers, in terms of prose style. I have no idea why. Don’t take it the wrong way. My heart goes out to you for your struggles but your style keeps me happy and laughing. Thanks so much!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. It’s unfortunate that your Mom or friends or even a sex education class didn’t prepare you for periods. My parents were very much into secrecy and not talking about things, so I ended up very naive about sexuality and had many physical and emotional/mental issues because of that. I’ve gone through many serious depressions but thankfully finally healed it all. Thanks for your honesty. Sending on support!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. You’re not crazy.

    Not saying that you are “ashamed of anything” but never be ashamed for being different, or eccentric. The ones who are not ordinary are usually the ones who are brilliant with the most sense.

    It is the common or considered normal folk who are the most “crazy”.

    It is great to be unique and unconventional.

    Just continue to grow and be you!

    Like

  6. Being of the “other” sex and not having to deal with female problems, I still found your writing to be funny and illuminating. Your writing style is humorous enough to make such childhood problems as serious as they were to you, funny to your readers.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. For me too it was a tragedy to see the blood and to think I was going to die. Having a Catholic mother never talked about sex, menstruation and condoms. I was in shock the first time I saw blood. I’ve been with a fever for days and didn’t want to go out. I hated the period and I still hate it because for me being a female meant being a victim. Because he always reminded me of my abuse at 4 and I wanted to forget and instead the blood brought all that pain to the surface. For me it was too much and I couldn’t talk to anyone about it, not even my sister. So it was a trauma and I understand your terrible life in school. I was terrified of gymnastics because I was afraid that by doing certain movements the blood could come out. I hated being a girl and that blood always reminded me of it.

    Liked by 1 person

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