I am going through a few transitions right now in my life. The major ones are the beginning of school and the ending of a very significant relationship.
Okay, I’m sorry to interrupt, but I just had to get up and clean up vomit for the second time today. My repulsive dog, Sasha Fierce, is on a puking spree. I’m pissed. This is why my brother chose to get fish when I got a dog.
Anyway, I won’t talk about my relationship problems out of respect for the other person and my own privacy, but I have no problem whining about school.
I am awful with transitions, especially when they involve brand new things. Prior to the start of the academic year, I was chillin’. I decided that I was going to make my life happier, and I did various things to try to build that idea up. I did things like download a bunch of “happy” music, buy new clothes, and make a Pinterest account. Let me tell you, Pinterest has an endless supply of happiness and wonder. Things were going great for a solid couple of days, but then it began.
The actual details of school aren’t that important. Overall, it just really sucks. I don’t know anyone in half of my classes, and I only have 1-2 friends in the others, so it’s a lot of new faces (and old faces that I don’t enjoy). I only have one teacher that I know, so the others are all new. In addition to all of that, I’ve recently been placed in Special Education. Why am I a SpEd now? “Emotional instability.” This puts me in the emotional support class called “Skills for Success.” This is probably my most uncomfortable block, surpassing my World Literature class (which is filled with kids 2-3 years younger than I am) and AP European History (which is way out of my academic league). What’s so bad about a support class? I don’t even know myself. I just feel so disconnected and out of place there. For some reason, I had this idea in my head that there would be kids like me there. And sure, there are a few vague similarities, but for the most part the other kids are nothing like me, and I am nothing like them. I don’t mean that in a terribly negative way. I’m sure they’re all awesome. It’s just extremely hard for me to blend into a group like that. This is kind of a contradiction because a lot of my friends and I have very, very little in common, but it’s difficult because these are kids that I’ve never even seen before at school and I’m supposed to tell them how I’m feeling. Hell, I don’t even tell my friends how I’m feeling most of the time. Maybe I’ll warm up to the group eventually, hopefully, and make some friends, but for now all I can manage to do is isolate myself, avoid talking at all costs, and try to zone out.
The first week of school was torture. I think I cried every day over it. If things keep going the way they are right now, I can’t imagine how I’m going to make it through the entire year. I’m sure dropping out will seem like a better option on multiple occasions. It already kind of does now. What’s so bad about getting my GED? I say that now, but if I ever did drop out, I’d beat myself up over it forever. That’s why I’m stuck being an 18-year-old junior. At this rate, I’ll graduate when I’m 19 if, and only if, I don’t mess up either of the next two years. And I mean, come on, let’s be realistic here. It’s me.
So basically, I’ve gone from feeling like I was ready to make a change, happy, and hopeful, to feeling hopeless, trapped, and lost with the end of summer. I’d say the school year is off to a great start!
Last week, I turned eighteen. Two days ago, I did something that I’ve wanted to do for a long time. I got my first tattoo. These are pictures of it right after it was finished, which explains the redness and beads of blood.
My tattoo’s existence, design, and placement were the topics of many debates literally up until the last minute. From family, to neighbors, to my therapist, everyone had something to say about my decision. The overall consensus was that if I absolutely must have one, it should be small and somewhere easily hidden, like on my shoulder. Of course that’s the opposite of what I wanted, and look who won that battle. Now, I didn’t get a large tat on my arm to rebel against basically everyone that I look up to. I don’t have the balls to do that. From the beginning, I knew that I wanted this particular tattoo to be somewhere that I could easily see it. It only seemed right that my first tattoo would be in memory of my best friend.
I went to a studio called DreamsCollide and had a tattoo artist named Joe. He was really chill, and offered little nuggets of wisdom to me, like a couple movies to watch on Netflix, and the ever-true statement “School fucking sucks. You don’t need that shit.” He was so relaxed and cool in this way that I can’t easily describe. It made me want to be like him. Joe took a look at some of my ideas, and created his own image that was far better than anything I had in mind.
Actually getting the tattoo was way less painful than I expected it to be. I was worried I would be a total pussy about it, but it was actually alright. The shading hurt significantly more than the outlining. As you can see, the art covers a shit ton of scars on my arm. This was one of Joe’s rad plans. The only problem with that was that every now and then, he would go over a scar and it would break open and start bleeding. That didn’t phase Joe at all though, so I just pretended (and hoped) that that was normal.
In the 40-some hours that I’ve had the tattoo, some strange shit has been going down inside of me. I feel relieved, almost liberated. I feel like this tattoo is something that I’ve always been searching for. I think that one of the reasons I resort to self-harm is to have an expression of the pain that I can never really find the right words to express. My cuts and burns and scars are proof that I felt unbearably bad. With this tattoo, I show my sorrow on my arm in a new way, and I can honor Isaiah in this way. I feel like I don’t need to hurt myself now, as strange as that might sound. I know it’s not that easy, but so far this seems like it’s going to be a great thing for me.
My tattoo deeply resonates with me today because it’s the ten month mark since Isaiah’s death. While this tattoo acknowledges his passing, it more importantly says “I’m still alive.”
So, I haven’t posted anything in, like, fourteen-hundred years. Sorry about that. I would write an entry about all the things I’ve done recently, like watch Skins UK and go to the ER and perform in a play, but none of that is really interesting. The most important thing that I have done since I last posted was see Beyoncé live. That’s right, motherfuckers. Be jealous and cry yourself to sleep because it was the greatest night of my life.
This is a video that I took that night:
I will admit that it’s pretty shitty quality, but hey, that’s an iPhone camera for ya.