YOU GUYS !!
Zara Barrie returned to the blog today. You may remember that she is came to the blog last year when I interviewed her about her book Girls, stop fainting: A guide for bad girls on how to get their speech Together. How not to notice a book with an amazing title like that?
Anyway, just to summarize…
Zara was a great support Skinny confidential & is a total gambler. She’s the best possible ‘bad girl’, beats to the beat of her own drum and is smart as a whip.
She is a writer, author, entrepreneur and I am overjoyed to be back …
:: drum rolls plz ::
A SERIES OF 3 PARTS!
Today we will hear Part 1 of Zara’s self-medication.
She will tell us about some unexpected ways in which she numb the pain she experienced at one stage of her life and share a moment when she knew she had to face her pain.
This post is honest and informative and I hope you enjoy it.
Self-medication of pain
“Zara, yes I love you honey, but you really it seems to me that you can’t handle your alcoholic beverages these days … ”My friend, Lilly, who has a two-meter-tall glass of champagne and is a professional model of lingerie with Caribbean-sea eyes, speaks my English accent purrsno. Cigarette smoke dances from her puckered lips with the grace of a ballerina.
He tosses his Marlboro Light 100 and prints it with his white convers sneaker.
My vision is blurred like a windshield on a cold day, but it somehow thaws in perfect focus as my eyes focus on her shoes. Wear sneakers. Apartments. I’ve never in my life worn flat shoes on a night out. I’ve been pushing around town in painful heels since I was thirteen, the year I was informed that I was cursed by the terrible fate of not having legs as long as a gazelle. Sometimes I joke with my friends: “After one drink, my heels hurt less. After three you can no longer feel pain at all. ”
It’s a metaphor for my life, but I don’t know it yet.
My vision returns blurred as I watch Lilly, smoothing out non-existent springs from her head without curling. Her hair looks like two silk curtains framing a face of more even proportions I’ve ever seen. I feel messy around her. Not just because I’m on the verge of blackout, and she was buzzing classically. Being close to Lilly is like looking in the mirror and looking at the pristine reflection of all that I am it is not. Lilly is a tall Amazon, I am Jewish and small. Lilly looks like she just came out of a Ralph Lauren commercial, it feels like I just got off the set Girl, interrupted. She is a bright blonde; I’m a disheveled brunette.
Lilly is the kind of girl you can essentially say never threw out the wrong thing at the deadliest wrong time; the kind of girl who has never slept with the wrong person for the wrong reasons; the kind of girl who never pushed away exactly person for wrong reasons; and the kind of girl who has never lost weight in booze because she’s trying to dampen unbearable pain and vibrational anxiety that nothing else seems to saturate.
Me? I ran laps everything of those blocks, baby.
The embarrassment I feel tonight, taking the character of Lilly, is so intense that it cuts through the protective armor of alcohol. I want to posters.
But I’m in England. We do not cry in England. We are drinking.
I stagger to the bar and order a double soda of vodka. A man in a plaid buckle with aggressive red shoes marches towards me and gives me an injection of tequila.
“Why did the man push his wife off the mountain?” He asks me with big, unpredictable amphetamine eyes.
“I do not know.” I stutter.
He held out a shot of tequila, proud as if it were a glorious gold trophy. I grab him from his arms and throw him down his throat, deliberately skipping the surface of his tongue because he’s too nervous and too real, to actually taste a raw poison that I shoot into my body.
“Tequilashe. Understand. Tequila. Killshe. ”
I don’t laugh because it’s the worst joke I’ve ever heard in my life.
And that’s the last thing I remember.
Refusing to laugh at a shitty joke.
The next morning I wake up on the couch, a stiff party dress clinging to my body, sore heels pounding on my carpet. My mouth and skull are dry and soulless as if filled with cotton wool. Violet, my best friend and roommate, towers over me. She is wearing small white cropped shorts. Her skin looks like gold, my spirit is like ashes.
“You darkened last night.” He reports like a journalist.
“I did not.” I’m lying.
“Do you remember coming home?”
I pause for a moment. The break is full of possibilities. For example, I could sit up straight, elicit a smile on my puffy face, and insist on it to do really remember everything and pretend to FULLY know anything embarrassing that will reveal to me that I am. No one can honestly tell a good story like yours. I should have an honorary doctorate from Harvard in Verbal Shit.
Yes could tell her the truth. The whole truth. But the truth is loaded like a gun and I’m not sure I’m ready to pull the trigger. Once a shot is fired, there is no going back. Empty lies are dead, and the truth is the only thing left to breathe.
“I remember everything, but I don’t want to talk about it.” I decided to keep lying. People undermine the darkness that catches the soul that lives in every lie. A lie is like a drug. It is a form of self-medication. True, lying may not make you drunk on the street, causing you to rip off brand new leggings, peel off your knees, and send your ex something madhouse, but it ‘s the same shit. Lying, spending money you don’t have, popping pills, splashing wine like you’re going to an electric chair, sleeping with people treating you like garbage, it’s all one giant patch. A nice piece of gauze to throw over a gaping wound, which is too grotesque and too painful, and most noticeable, too real to deal with.
I mean who wants to stare at an ugly truth when you could cover it up with a pretty rosy lie? Or a pretty pink cocktail? Or a pretty pink pill? Or a pretty pink dress? Or a pretty pink person?
Violet leaves because she has a boyfriend she should lean on, and the moment the door slams behind her, Shame enters the room. She sat down next to me on the couch. The elbows touch. Her skin is icy.
“You’re a disgrace so you better keep lying!”
She sings songs, her smile evil and as wide as a Cheshire cat. Her presence is so suffocating that it sucks all the air out of the room. Shame is like one of those spreading people, which you find in the subways of New York. He sits lazily, with his legs spread wide, taking up all the space, leaving no room for you to sit. Her titled energy makes you feel too uncomfortable and unworthy to ask her if she can move because you are exhausted and your legs are killing you, so just stay quiet and grab with all your strength for the subway fence as the trembling train rocks your body back and forth like a rag doll.
But it’s only a matter of time before you fall.
I was falling, I could feel it. The train flew out of control, and not even the silencing force of shame could stop me from uttering a tiny scream.
Later that night I have a panic attack. I’ve drunk them a few times already, but I don’t have Xanax anymore tonight. I am forced to sit in panic. I’m too scared to leave my apartment for wine. Everything feels electric. Vibrating. Britka. Too sharp to process my eyes. Even the texture of the exposed brick in my apartment is starting to drive me crazy.
Maybe I’m a girl running away from everything she’s afraid is true about her, maybe I’m abusing the deadliest numbing mechanisms in the stratosphere, and maybe I’m a bunch of sadness and anxiety accidentally thrown to the floor like yesterday’s dirty laundry – but even in this fragile, less and less condition, I know in my heart that it is not yes. My recent behavior does not reflect the woman I am.
I this it is not a life I should live.
I’ve always known since I was a kid with headgear and glasses that I should do something big with his life. Something extraordinary! Even in my darkest hour the road ahead of me always seemed paved with splendor. But the glow begins to fade. In fact, I no longer see the road ahead at all. These are just dark clouds laden with doom.
I realize: the spark is disappearing from my future and for the first time the thought of a life without glitter feels much more frightening than the wrath of shame.
Because it’s a spark yes. I’m losing yes.
I’m tired. I’m hungover. I didn’t have a proper meal for days. I am deeply ashamed. And lastly, the fucking texture of the damn exposed brick in my apartment is mockery yes.
I pick up the phone and call my brother in LA.
“Shit is wrong,” I say the moment he answers the phone. Four male words are released into the air and at the moment I see a tiny beam of light bleeding through the curtains of my living room. It is so small but so beautiful, I can’t help but cry.
As I mentioned, Zara is here for a three-part series, so follow parts 2 and 3 where she talks about dealing with pain and self-forgiveness.
+ the top 5 to take away from an interview with Glennon Doyle.
++ heard from Arielle Lorre addiction and plastic surgery.