Stressed, so incredibly stressed.  I can feel the anxiety eating away at any strength in my chest.  My fingers are fidgety and my breathing shallow.   I can’t complete a single thought without my mind prematurely bouncing to the next one.  It’s as if there’s some sort of mammoth scale balancing on my shoulders full of delicate china… I know one wrong move, one wrong tilt and the whole thing’s going to come crashing down.  A few things have already fallen off as forgetful precursors to an impending doom. Tap, tap, tap go my fingers.  I stand up and start to pace again, trying to figure out where on earth I should even begin. My sanity bends like a palm blown by hurricane winds.  Everything in my brain in flying at warp speed and because of the speed, it’s all a blur.  My stomach churns, producing way too much acid.  Legs start to shake nervously to the beat of each heart palpitation.  Stressed, so incredibly stressed.

Stress like this leads to thoughts of anything that’ll come me down… a pill, a drink, a smoke, a drive, a run, a writing binge.  Yea, some are healthy, some aren’t, but you do what you have to do to survive living two lives at once.  I think I went through a solid seven years of feeling this way.  Keeping up with The Life along with “normal life” is next to impossible.  Keeping up with The Life is impossible enough alone.  You’ve got to outrace your own coping mechanisms (usually addictions), along with your pimp’s temper (which is rarely predictable).  For me, I had grades and legit jobs to worry about too.  I ran around keeping secrets from my parents about my “normal friends” and keep secrets from my friends about my parent’s and my life in prostitution.  It causes stress.  Lots and lots of stress… that now I’ve found doesn’t even go away when the abuse stops.  I’ve been left with residual stress… goodie.

What I’m thankful for now is better education on healthy coping and lower stress triggers in general.  I’m hard on myself though, as someone often tells me.  Unless a man is running at me with a knife trying to kill me, I have a hard time validating my right to feel stressed.  Everyday tolls like a full email inbox or packed schedule don’t seem like they should be big deals when I’ve seen the worser parts of life.  I guess though, it’s okay– okay to be stressed out like a normal person these days.  But then again, am I ever going to be able to sit under a category of normal?  Probably not, but that’s probably OK.

May this blog serve as an education to those who do not yet know or understand the atrocities of trafficking and may it serve as an encouragement to those who understand it all too well.

(Post originally written 3/5/12)
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