Read Dates: April 10, 2019 – April 11, 2019
Publication date: November 4, 2014
Source: Owned copy
“this is the journey of
surviving through poetry
this is the blood sweat tears
of twenty-one years
this is my heart
in your hands
I had seen a lot of conflict over this book. While I didn’t know anything about the contents, I knew that most people either loved or despised this book. Some people were criticizing the book really hard. That was all I needed. I wanted in. So I went into this without an inkling of an idea what its pages held in wait for me.
This. book. was. HEAVY.
Maybe it was my just coming from a self help book that filled me with positive thoughts and advice for keeping my head above water. This dove right into the raw parts of me. The wounds I didn’t know were still open. There were moments when I would think “I have to stop.” But I pushed myself further into the book and I’m glad I did.
The book is split into 4 sections. The Hurting, The Loving, The Breaking, and The Healing. The first section, The Hurting was the most difficult part to read for me. The author opens up about past trauma and abuse she has encountered. While I started this section feeling uncomfortable, I soon came to find I enjoyed how blunt she was. I appreciated that she didn’t sugar coat things and that she chose the harsher terminology. After all, the things the first section cover are not pleasant and should never be sugar coated. Though I did look ahead to the section called “The Breaking” and wondered how it could be any worse than what I had just encountered during “The Hurting”.
“The Loving” was nothing like I expected. I assumed it would be happier times along the way but it was not. The author took us through unhealthy relationships and showed us how we tend to change ourselves to better suit people we want. She showed us the entirety of meeting someone, falling for them, thinking the moon revolves around their being, and altering ourselves to please them.
“The Breaking” really resonated with me. There were a lot of entries that hit me at my core. Either because I had felt them before or agreed so much with what was said. Some of the entries I simply had a great appreciation for because she had found words so poetic to describe a feeling within me and I couldn’t have said it better. A certain passage on fate really got me riled up…
“tell me. who convinced you. you’ve been given a heart and a mind that isn’t yours to use. that your actions do not define what will become of you.”
This section dealt mostly with how people leave our lives and how we handle it (or don’t handle it). It showed us the truth of how we wallow and blame ourselves for their leaving. How we think we weren’t enough for them when “the problem was you were so enough he was not able to carry it.”
The final section, “The Healing” was the wake up call. The call for you to realize your worth and stand as tall as you were born to stand. It showed us that we can’t love others if we don’t even love ourselves. It showed us that pain is a natural part of life and loneliness is our body’s way of telling us we’re in “desperate need of yourself.” It reminds us that the people that broke us in the first place will have no place in our healing. We should surround ourselves with those whose presence alone gives us healing. It encourages us to love our body the way it is. Right down to your hairy legs. Love yourself no matter what. For you stand out. You are different. You are beautiful.
I’ll leave you with two of my favorite passages from this section:
no books have
the spine to
-“we are all born
the greatest tragedy is
being convinced we are not”-