“Things You Should Know Before You Love Me (or A List of Things I’ve Never Told My Therapist)” – Rachael Blaine
April 16, 2019
I am a writer because I do not know how to speak without a script. Allow me to communicate in the only way I know how.
I do not want to talk about my scars. They are mine, and I will only share them with you when I know you are as much a part of me as they are. It will take you years to extract the damage from under my tongue, from between my teeth. It is because scar tissue is thicker than regular tissue and I am made of scar tissue that no longer responds to a blade. My healing is a process that may never end, and you must understand this.
I am never impulsive. Even when I seem impulsive, it is likely the result of a dance I have taught myself for years; something so complex and so rehearsed that it looks like nothing, that I look like nothing. It’s like every English class I’ve told you I hated–maybe I hate analysis because I’m afraid it will show you how to unravel me.
Loneliness has always been my closest friend, and she will be jealous. You will have to win her approval and learn to love her as I have. She has clung to my chest for years and grown into me like ivy. To get rid of her is to get rid of me.
I will change for you…all the time. I will become the person I think you want again and again and again. Do not be upset with me for learning that camouflage is necessary for love.
When we disagree, when your throat closes up in that calm calculation before the storm, I will be defensive. I will try to be louder than you because my greatest fear is that you won’t understand why I’m upset. I might not listen until you have listened to me. I have been taught that a yell is an attack and there’s no way to win without attacking back.
I do not care if my parents don’t like you, but I do care if my grandmother does.
When you tell me you care about me, I won’t believe you. I will try to prove you wrong with every trick I have. Please don’t let me prove you wrong.
Most of my problems come down to the fact that I have so much love to give, and I do not know how to dilute myself.
I am smart, and I am trying to unlearn these things for you–if only because the one thing I never want to see is your disappointment.
Rachael Blaine is a sophomore creative writing and publishing double major. When she’s not writing, she’s probably either trying to find cats to pet or ranting about astrology.