Friday, March 9, 2018

Tea Cup

Welcome to a Secret Subject Swap. This week 8 brave bloggers picked a secret subject for someone else and were assigned a secret subject to interpret in their own style. Today we are all simultaneously divulging our topics and submitting our posts.

My “Secret Subject” is:

If you woke up to find you were still 16 years old and you had just been dreaming of what adult life might be like, how would you react?

It was submitted by:

This was difficult for me, but I think I hammered this thing out into something worth reading.


16 year old me had already lived through some difficult shit in her short few years. There's no sugarcoating it. From an abusive alcoholic of a father, a mother affected a lot by him and her own abusive parent, their divorce, the violent aftermath of the divorce, rape, and living with people at 16 who absolutely did not get her, did not want to, and hid her (the highlight reel), 16 year old me was broken into tiny pieces that a later me would have to try to put together into a whole being. Imagine a tea cup shattered on the floor being held together by a little glue and spotty self-love, missing the handle, chipped, the cracks minute but visible yet still standing, still stout. Fragile but determined. That's 36 year old me, that surgically reconstructed tea cup that will never accomplish what it might have been meant for but is still beautiful, still going, and still has purpose.

Also imagine some filthy word like "fuck" painted in delicate calligraphy across the front because it's me we're talking about...

16 year old me, though, was still in shatters. Waking up to find she'd gone from the me I am now back to who she was then... torture. Still understanding there were nearly 20 years standing between where she was and the part where she, I, we reconstruct the tea cup and find ourselves happy and at peace with where we are would bring a lot of pain, torment that she couldn't go to sleep like a princess in a fairytale and wake up when things are better. To feel the warmth of a life being lived and lived with love and wake up back in the cold of a castle tower, brick and mortar walls constructed to keep everyone out and protect those tiny shards of tea cup, Trust No Bitch flashing neon across the outside would almost be enough to push her over the edge.

At first.

But maybe it would give her hope after the first few moments of realization hit hard but while she was still awash in the glow of what would be. She might not be out of the thick of it, but there were a lot of nights she didn't want to live anymore at all, plenty of barren, hopeless nights when the tears had dried up long ago and the isolation was too much, too alienating, too cold. Seeing that future and its possibilities and how loved she would be; how fulfilled surrounded by her little family (chosen and not), the animals she saved and adored and gave new lives to, her letters keeping her fulfilled, in good conversation, and with purpose; and, how much she would laugh instead of cry even with a few more hard times ahead would give her strength to keep going and live life on her own terms.

That's not to say she wouldn't be slightly confused, young me. Married? Divorced? A kid? She wanted none of those things. A degree but no job from it? She was supposed to do G r e a t T h i n g s with it, you know. And a chronic illness? That was never in the cards. But she would see herself making the best of all of it, learning from her mistakes, carving her own path, and I think she would find herself at peace with where she is headed once she made terms with the fact that she was still stuck in the pit for awhile longer. Those things, even the illness, made her a better person, mentally stronger. And the kid...his long-haired, anime-loving, too smart for his own good weirdness would be something she never could have planned for anyway. He gave her purpose stronger than anything else she would ever know and every giggle would renew her life. It was a tragically flawed but beautifully constructed puzzle, her tea cup, and it was better than anything she thought she would have.


Here are links to all the sites now featuring Secret Subject Swap posts. Sit back, grab a cup, and check them all out. See you there:

Baking In A Tornado

Cognitive Script

The Lieber Family Blog

The Bergham Chronicles