Ode to Alcoholic Egos and Unbridled Souls.
Maybe I am a spoiled brat, maybe I don’t know your pain, maybe I haven’t lived your many years, maybe I’ve never had children, never been married, never been the most or least anything.
Maybe I’m 28 and can’t even afford to care for my dog, maybe I suck at disciplining him too, maybe I’ve been gone for 10 years, and so I don’t know shit. And, so the fuck what?
You choose to be an asshole, you choose to waste your hard-earned money and God-given organs in an alcoholic blur, you choose to compare your story to everyone else’s, burning the brightest fire for victimhood there is, you choose to dismiss anyone else’s experience. You call yourself an empath, but you feel what others feel while denying them their own sensitivities.
You choose to say real shit only when your real shitfaced, with a meanness all your own, and your seething judgment sliding out sideways. You can choose to hold it against me all your life, but I choose something other than your bullshit on sloshed repeat for the rest of my days, because nothing I do will ever change how you feel. So, fuck it. I’ll do me. You keep choosing.
Drown in your resentment, if you choose. Blind yourself with comparisons, if you choose. Fall under that cross, if you choose. Play your bullshit on repeat, if you choose. Or don’t.
I will love you either way, but I probably won’t like you. Or choose to be around you, or drive your drunk ass home, or shrivel up with shame at your slithering cuts, or stand in your misery’s wake and feel my insides whither to worthlessness… anymore.
You are right, I have chosen to be a victim in the past. I have worn the mask of desperation for a long fucking time. Thank god, it has been my choice. That means, this whole time I’ve had an option. Freedom isn’t a choice. Freedom just is. Our experience is the choice we make inside of freedom’s paradigm. It is the choice to own our freedom or be a victim to it.
I hope you surprise me. I hope your choices become stunningly unpredictable. I hope they reverberate with your soul’s call to be the loudest part of you. I hope you learn your worth, and stop diminishing everyone else’s. I hope you can forgive life’s transgressions on your joy and claim your inherent No-one-gets-to-take-that-away-from-me radiant life force.
I hope you feed the other wolf — the one that is light, brilliant, filled with possibility, loving, compassionate, intentional, creative, regenerative, curious and whole.
I hope you consider your options. I hope you consider that you are free to choose how you show up. I promise to consider mine. To practice what I preach. To lead with the soul, to be in my body, and to tell my truth from sobriety, even if I’m writhing with discomfort at the vulnerability and risk of it all.
I would love to hear your truth from sobriety. It would be like miraculous rain in a lifelong drought. Not your complaints, not your judgments, but your truth. I have claimed all of the things that your drunken alter ego would tell me. They won’t hurt me anymore. I’m integrating my shadow. I pray you integrate yours, so I can know you and not it.
Either way, from now one, I will see your choices, I will honor them as such, and I will feel free to make my own, with or without your punishment.
I love you, but I can’t love you for you. I will, however, start to love myself the way no one else can, as unwelcome and selfish as it might be, because I am worth it. I hope you decide that you are worth your own love too.
Carli Romero is a native New Mexican, who is in love with the state’s blue desert mountains and won’t give up red or green chili for the world. She is a community organizer, invested in cultivating feminine leadership, and transforming education in her state to support whole learners. She is currently working toward her master’s in Educational Leadership at the University of New Mexico, and formerly founded and directed a branch of Shakti Rising in Las Cruces, NM. She is slowly remembering who she is, through visions painted into words. This is her second publication with Rebelle Society.