What It’s Like to be Me ( by: Anonymous) 6

Friends, we’ve read some remarkably frank words in The Anonymous Project. Today, I want to say thank you to everyone who has shared their lives, and trusted us with their very selves. Be encouraged by the starkness of the human condition, because here we see pain exists alongside beauty.
credit: gnuckx

credit: gnuckx


This is what it’s like to be me…

I am 3

My brother & I are in the car

There’s a hornet in there

We’re scared

He leans way over, squishing me.

It hurts.  But not as bad as a hornet sting

I learned that life is about choosing the lesser of two pains


This is what it’s like to be me

I am still 3

I am burning up with a 105 fever

I lived in an oxygen tent

I couldn’t breathe

I should have been brain damaged


This is what it’s like to be me…

Running around at recess

Tomboy playing football with the boys

Not interested in hanging out with the Pretty Girls

Because I wasn’t pretty enough

I had the wrong address

I had the wrong last name

My Daddy was a drunk bohemian

He was from the poor side of town

My Mommy was the child of immigrants

She was a dirty guinea

We didn’t have a manicured lawn

We had a Plymouth Scamp.

I learned that status and money are measuring sticks for the insecure and shallow

And that I would never be good enough.


This is what it’s like to be me…

I’m 13 and have a boyfriend

He’s 16 and an addict

He goes into rages when he’s not high

I blame my bruises on being a clumsy fool

I learn it’s easier to just be a clumsy fool

And I learn early to take it


This is what it’s like to be me..

I’m 16

My boyfriend is moving to Baltimore

I’m not sad

He hurt me

He tried to cut himself.

I tried to stop him

He punched me square in the face

I have two black eyes

I leaned that I can’t just take it

No matter how strong I am

Someone is always stronger

And ready to beat you into submission either with words

Or fists


This is what it’s like to be me…

I have to go to my high school principal’s office

My boyfriend killed himself

October 24, 1986

I was going to see REM

I still go.

REM sings “Flowers of Guatemala”

I sob uncontrollably

Because I couldn’t save him

I wasn’t strong enough

Wasn’t good enough

Now I’m ruining everyone’s evening

I learn to suck it up

To hold it in

To not be a crybaby


This is what it’s like to be me..

High school is Hell

The jocks hate me

The popular girls hate me

They tease me and my friends

Because we look different

My friends take it.

I don’t.

I am violent.

I come up swinging

And I get in trouble.

I learn that life is unfair unjust and unkind.


This is what it’s like to be me..

I cut my wrist in the girls room

They lock me away in the psych ward.

With the rest of the forgotten, lonely, voiceless characters

Who are only good enough for walk-on roles, no speaking parts.


This is what it’s like to be me…

I begin drinking at age 15

Pills at 16

Acid at 18

Coke at 19

I am a full blown addict by 21

The drugs and alcohol soften the cheap shots of life

They allow me to not hate so much

And to not hurt so much.

So does music

Music is the only thing I have

I play in a band

I put out ‘zines

In the Underground, I’m Somebody.

I am important.

I am popular.

But I learn that subcultures also have hierarchies.

I become disillusioned

And I feel very alone


This is what it’s like to be me..

It’s 1991.

I am sitting in the ER

My boyfriend broke my jaw.

He’s an asshole.

But so am I

Another layer of concrete and barbed wire go up around my heart

It’s easier to mend broken bones and bruises

Than a broken heart and crushed spirit.


This is what it’s like to be me..

In 1992 friends literally drag me to Western Psych

I took a potentially lethal dose of Nembutal

On purpose.

I believe my life is a series of mistakes

Because I am a mistake


This is what it’s like to be me…

In 1995 I get diagnosed with lupus

I abuse the painkillers they prescribe me.

I think I’m sick because I’m being punished

For all the bad things I have done.

Because I am bad.

In 1996 I get pregnant.

I quit everything.

No one thought I could do it.

I learn no one will believe in you

Not even your friends

I learn support systems are unstable and fragile.


This is what it’s like to be me..

It’s 2003 and over all I have a nice life now..

I’m comfortable.

But I’m miserable.

I still can’t breathe.

I am still misunderstood.

I would rather be alone than be with someone just for the sake of being with someone

I am still choosing between the lesser of two pains

I tell my husband I want out.

This is what it’s like to be me…

It’s present time

I’m still sad

But I have hope

I’m a momma

To a beautiful boy

And he’s all I have left.