Bleachers, “I Wanna Get Better”
Nobody close to me has ever died (except if you count the girl that I used to be), so in that sense I do not relate to Jack Antonoff. He lost his 13-year-old sister when he was 18 and he wrote “I Wanna Get Better” about his experiences. But I am formally in recovery and for that, this song resonates with me.
When I was a senior in high school, my AP Lit class was discussing Sylvia Plath’s The Bell Jar and I got into an argument with my pal Edward about Plath. He mentioned that she was downright anti-Semitic and self-aggrandizing in her discomfort but I had the a single-track thoughts such that I totally identified with Sylvia as I referred to her. We have been both thin, quite, and if I’m becoming sincere, clinically depressed young ladies and we have been enormously angry at the world for letting us get the way we were. Five years later, I’m nonetheless great friends with Edward and I’m far more critical of Plath than I was at 17, but I nonetheless can’t entirely shake the association with her and her melodrama.
I spent years and years in a lot of pain. I create that down and I currently am hesitating due to the fact I hate admitting how significantly I hurt. As Leslie Jamison stated, sensible girls do not cry pain. There are specific words I could use to describe what occurred to me but now, those words are not as critical as what those words mean for me. There have been weeks where I was utterly manic, I would remain up for 4 nights at a time, living on coffee and apples and Diet regime Coke and feverishly writing math proofs and papers and twirling, refusing to stroll in a straight line, creating guys I employed to sleep with gloriously uncomfortable with my presence in their lives. But there have been days where I laid in bed for 16 hours a day and drank for the other eight. I held the record for most absences in AP BC Calculus, which I don’t know if I must actually be proud of. There was by no means one without the other and I was under the impression that everyone was dealing with the same factor that I was. But the factor is, they weren’t.
Adrienne Rich wrote “I want to go on from right here with you fighting the temptation to make a career of discomfort.” I feel about the men and women who I adore and how they relate to the discomfort I have gotten myself into and out of. There are the acceptable methods to deal with discomfort, and there are the unacceptable, heinous, godforbidden ways to deal with discomfort, which I am well versed in. You think about ladies in discomfort as sad pill-popping housewives in brightly colored dresses, frigid neurotic blondes freezing and frozen, tragic French prostitutes with fake flowers in their hair. Emma Bovary trying and failing to commit suicide, Betty Draper shooting pigeons due to the fact of her husband’s infidelity, Satine dying, dying, dying all for love or more accurately, poverty and a lack of medication. But what does it all even imply?
In Mask Magazine, Larissa Pham writes,
“Pain has an aesthetic that is why we use anesthetic for its removal. It is quite glamorous to suffer but everyone knows you have to do it the proper way, with grace and generosity. Otherwise your discomfort is as mundane as everybody else’s and no one wants their discomfort to really feel anything much less than uniquely palpable… What’s pretty: anorexia, cocaine, meditation. Not fairly: binge drinking, vomit, subtweeting.”
I’m quite very good at toeing the line amongst fairly and ugly and I always have been. I am fairly, in the traditionally tiny sense, “Doll perfect girls with angry black hair, stomping their heels, demanding, demanding, demanding.” But, I’ve had experiences that render my prettiness virtually void. I’ve binge drank before and it’s gross, eight shots of tequila in 1 night and I was nevertheless sober sufficient to bear in mind all the crying simply because of too a lot practice drinking. I blogged my discomfort, or rather I blogged my fury and wrote down the wide open wound of my heartbreak and I wasn’t supposed to since I ought to understand to maintain my mouth shut when males hurt me. The appear of becoming in discomfort is by no means just about the discomfort itself but rather how it can be viewed voyeuristically, and because I was so scared of living up to that image, I went the other way.
For a extended time, I was intent on placing on a show named the Girl Who Was Beyond Pain, and that was the biggest lie I ever told. I have a theory about the East Coast, especially New York City individuals, that they let their wounds fester and scab over with the poison still inside of them by no means letting themselves heal or even bleed. I on the other hand let my wounds openly gush out, I metaphorically pour alcohol and salt on them to disinfect due to the fact I want to be beyond the pain one day, I want to exist as a individual who does not suffer. I want to be entirely complete, not partially broken and inclined to start bleeding out with no warning, and I do not know if I’ll ever succeed but I know that I have to try. I don’t know if I’ve been like this forever or only since I realized the depth of every thing that I could see inside the globe, and what I would have to withstand in order to survive in it. But I am visceral in my building and I let folks see it in me and even though I’ve stopped the bulk of my “Dark Dhaaruni Antics” as I get in touch with them because of increasing up and picking comfort over vindication, people do not overlook. I reduce off eight inches of my hair to “Pyro” in the co-ed bathroom of my freshman dorm, I wrenched off all my black sparkly acrylic nails in a fit of heartbroken outrage on my 20th birthday simply because I want to feel some semblance of pain and the drugs I had taken on a whim prevented me from performing so, I drank and I drank and I drank, mostly whilst underage, and absolutely nothing produced it go away till I stared it straight in the face and refused to turn back.
I ultimately chose “I Wanna Get Better” to create about for this week simply because right after years of being in a profound quantity of pain, it wasn’t adequate for me. I wanted to get greater. I wanted to reside up to my prospective, I wanted to be okay following years and years of not becoming okay, I wanted to stop getting the girl that boring guys create cigarette soaked diatribes about as that girl who died who they were madly in adore with and in no way got to confess their infatuation to. So, I sat down and stared at myself in the mirror and I thought about what I had to do. I took time off college, I went to more than a few psychiatrists, numerous therapists, and I found what worked for me. I take medication that thankfully my insurance covered and I started to create. I write about what I went through, about the books that got me via it all, and almost everything in amongst and I’d like to consider I’m worth reading.
Last year, exactly a year from right now, for OWOB’s Theme Week, I wrote about obtaining my heart broken. But this year, I’m not reveling in how I was hurt, I’m celebrating how far I’ve come and for that I continue to listen to “I Wanna Get Greater.”
– Dhaaruni Sreenivas
Dhaaruni previously wrote for OWOB about Lana Del Rey and Florence + the Machine.