Bullethole

Trigger warning: This post contains a brief mention of abuse, mental illness, and anorexia.

You are not alone.

As someone who has spent most of my life alone, I know those words can be hard to grasp. That someone, another person with a world of their own outside of you, could honestly care. That the beautifully tragic emotions that ruin you could possibly be anything but unique. It’s a humbling and terrifying thought, being in the emotional company of another. And though I know just how hard they are to believe, humor me when I say they are true.

You are not alone.

-Love, Anonymous.

I’m Anonymous, one of many. But I’m not anonymous, not really. For I, and my colleagues, mirror you. We’re not so different, the lot of us here at the keyboard and all of you looking at the screen. We have all fallen, been shot down, torn apart, forsaken, forgotten. Though we may have many pains in common, we also have one, blaring, bright truth among us that is the most amazing of them all. We are all still here. But we know life hurts, so we are here to show you that we all bleed the same color.

Just, promise me, you won’t forget the triumph we have in common, despite the tragedy.

The role which brought me here today is that of the high functioning clinically insane. But we all play many roles. So I not only come to you as a mentally fractured young man, but also to speak to you as a child of abuse, a pained raging atheist, a terminal youth, a perpetual outsider, an anxiety fighter, a recovered truant, a long time anorexic, and most of all, I come to you as my own worst enemy.

There are already similarities in the color of the blood that falls from my wounds to the puddles at the feet of my fellow writers here because really, truly, you are not alone.

I hail from a city of beauty, one with kind people and exhilarating air. It lights up at night under the stars and blossoms during the day under the cloudless sky. Perhaps you have a place like that of your own being painted behind your eyes.

I was raised Catholic, went to a private preschool-8 church school. It had glorious stained glass windows, priests with eyes that wandered as much as their hands, and very distinguished groups of students that kept us separated and in our places in the social hierarchy. In my class there were two groups: myself and everyone else. Money was what divided us, myself a scholarship student of a low income background, and them, the children of politicians who had elevators in their mansions up on the butte. Though the specifics may be different, I am far from the only one who was painfully aware of what role money played in the world at a young age.

I know very well, the pit that forms in your stomach when the topic comes up. Growing up in a world where money was the strongest point of contingency in the family, I am very weird about it now. Receiving a gift makes me feel guilty, I calculate the price to the wage to know how much of their time was traded for the material item in my hands.

Just putting that into words causes me unease.

Apathetic to the world, I spent my recesses in the classroom, switching between reading the Bible and the dictionary to avoid the assault that was sure to befall me if I ventured to the playground. A good Catholic boy for my entire life, I hadn’t really thought on it much. But I do remember the exact moment a question, as if an intrusive force in my world, spiraled into my mind.

What if God isn’t real?

It was mid-step one Monday morning sixth grade year after leaving the chapel. I froze, overtaken by terror, for I feared that a lightning bolt was going to strike me down for my insolence. It was that moment that tore my world down, that moment that changed and shaded every thought that followed. Soon I was an outsider to a world I once belonged to, a stranger to those around me as I stood in a crowd at church. Their chants, songs, and prayers started to hurt my ears, their views began to frustrate me.

I do try to speak carefully of this, because I know I am somewhat outnumbered in my beliefs, or lack thereof, here. But if you are like me and know what it feels like to suddenly be poisoned by the wine, to choke on the sacramental bread, to be suffocated by the incense, and to fear the witch-hunt, I stand with you.

If you believe in love, not a book, you are not alone. Even if you’re full of rage, hatred and pain toward a religion, you are not alone. It is frowned upon, to proclaim your pride in your godlessness, even though those who have God can go on about it all they wish to. I understand the frustrations, the anger, the pain and fear that comes with facing a nihilistic view. I can’t say that the scars from my wings catching fire have faded much, even nine years later. But no matter where you are in your fall from grace, I am with you.

I was expelled from that private school after sixth grade. Since my fall, I became a truant. I missed more days in my public school time than the ones I attended. Falling ill, family troubles abound, I definitely lost my way. So if you are trapped in a maze of questionable choices, I stand with you, calling out from the other side to help you through.

Because trust me, there is a way out.

Out of nowhere, I was given the life altering chance to attend early college, and from there I cleaned my life up. My family still would prefer me to stop breathing, I was ‘going to hell’ for the way I loved, and each beat of my temperamental heart felt a little more rickety than the last. My life was clean, but it was a tad dark. I didn’t think things could really get much worse.

So being the prideful, cocky, Slytherin that I am, I tempted the fates.

I dared them to shoot me down.

And sure enough, they did. A sleeper agent in my mind, it awoke and destroyed the world I knew. Falling to a mental illness felt an awful lot like losing my faith. It changed everything. And that brings me to today, the day I sit at my desk, my music so loud that it garbles the voices and the endless yelling of my family in the background, writing this.

Dear the mentally fractured,

Dear the children of abuse,

Dear the godless,

Dear the money fearing,

Dear the terminal youth,

Dear the endlessly apologetic,

Dear the lonely,

Dear the anxious,

Dear the delinquents,

Dear the anorexics,

Dear you, your own worst enemy,

You are not alone.

And I mean it.

Love, Bulletproof.

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11 thoughts on “Bullethole

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  1. Oh, dearest, I wish I could wrap you up in a hug and protect you from all of that. But I can’t. Again, distance being a thing that exists.

    My ‘fall from grace’ was different, in that I left the church and found God and myself together. People have given me so much grief for that and for my lifestyle, but my family is supportive. Otherwise I think I would have shattered a long time ago. They call me wicked for not attending church every Sunday and they can’t see that I attend church every time I tend my houseplants, every time I hug someone, every time I offer a bit of myself to help someone who needs me. I have no words of condemnation because I understand feeling as you do. And even if I didn’t understand, I do not wish to offer condemnation. I wish to offer love. Sometimes, loving means standing still and not letting others move you, no matter how much you love them and want them back; but more often than that, loving is simply that – loving.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think you’re wicked awesome.
      I’m sorry people cannot see that you have you faith in your way. I greatly appreciate the lack of condemnation. I am quite nervous about the topic of religion in most cases because I am almost always one of the very few who feel the way I do. So thank you for your kindness and lack of judgment. Sets me somewhat at ease ❤
      Man, if we didn't live nearly a continent length apart, hugs would happen.

      Like

  2. I hurt so much for you right now. And I so appreciate you sharing your thoughts–you did so beautifully.

    While I don’t know what everything you have experienced feels like, I also have been in shoes similar to yours. I was abused by a pastor, my father. I am an anorexic. I know what it’s like to be hurt by the church and to wrestle with God and the idea of God. I am a Christian, but that doesn’t mean I don’t rebel against ideologies that I believe God never intended for the church to adopt, so while I haven’t received the flack you have, I’ve gotten a taste, and I’m sorry you were made to suffer that. I know what it’s like to fall from the grace of your family and to suffer accordingly, to have a sleeper agent of illness wake in your mind.

    I wish I could hug you right now.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m dreadfully sorry that your shoes resemble mine (insert out-of-place joke about having good taste in footwear here).

      I knew there was at least one other of us battening anorexia, I’m sorry you have to face this beast of a thing too.

      I hope all the best for you in your battles and that you will arise victorious. I’m sure you will, you sound pretty epic.

      Like

  3. I’m so so thankful that you decided to share this story with the world. You are incredibly brave for making that step and like everyone else has already said, I’m sorry for all you had to suffer. I’m also sorry that the church gave you such an awful time… Please know that we are NOT all like that. Thank you for sharing your story! ♥

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for your kind words!

      I know many lovely humans who have faith of one kind or another, so no worries, I know the good far outweighs the bad. 🙂

      Like

  4. First of all, your writing is absolutely beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing your story. Also, I hope that you find your peace with atheism. I see it as a beautiful thing, and being an atheist is something you should be proud of. There is a community of atheists (and kind, understanding Christians) here on WordPress who are just like you who would love to know you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so very much, I’m happy you found my writing worth your time.

      I have found my peace and am proud, very much so. But due to the view climate of the peers I currently hail from, I do try to keep quiet about it. Though perhaps there are others like me among the ranks of the religious who feel similarly to me, so here upon this blog it is my job to let them know they are not alone either.

      I’m happy to be here on WordPress and look forward to meeting more people here.

      Thank you for your comment!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Oh Bulletproof, I hardly know what to say, except that, even though I haven’t experienced such great pain, I am trying my hardest to understand. Having grown up in the church (a Protestant denomination, not Catholic), a daughter of a pastor, multiple other family members that are/were pastors, I’ve seen and heard a lot of the damage religion can do. I can’t help but imagine that things might be different if people who called themselves Christian actually followed what Christ said about loving people. Goodness knows I’m doing my best to love as he said to.

    Also, I ask you to please not be nervous about sharing your heart and your story. This is a place for all of us to speak and find love and acceptance, not just those that hail from the majority. Like I’ve said before, I truly want to understand your perspective; I think I speak for everyone here when I say that.

    You’re not alone, Bulletproof. Never forget that. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, I’ll try to not forget that. It made me smile, reading that in your comment.

      Reading yours and the comments of others, I just sort of sit here feeling somewhat bad. I really don’t mean to write things that make people say they are sorry for my pain. Pain is just a thing, I suppose. But I do appreciate your concern and care. It means a lot. But really, truly, it is alright. ❤

      I will try to speak from the heart in my differing regards, it's wonderful to not be fearful of doing so. Thank you so much!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. You’re welcome, Bulletproof! And it is true, pain is a part of life, but that doesn’t mean you have to keep it to yourself. I honestly think people say “I’m sorry” to that because they genuinely want to help, just don’t know how or what to say. At least, that’s how I see it. 🙂

        Like

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