YOU, I or SHE
This tale is a warning, about a vice and its woe,
Of the lesson I learnt, and the ones yet to know.
See, the end is unwritten, might be my final farewell,
To the good and the bad, to the heaven and hell.
But the tale should be told, and so Iíll commence,
Iíll be open and honest and try not cause offence.
The whole story started less than eighteen months ago,
With me overweight, out-of-shape and my self-esteem low.
I was awkward and sad but was so sick of my lot,
Iíd work out to get thin; it was no novel plot.
But this time I did it. Lost the kilos: twenty-three,
An aesthetic success! But a shock lay waiting for me.
What I discovered to my horror, when the fat had all gone,
It wasnít why Iíd been unhappy, Iíd been mistaken all along.
When you canít blame the depression on the layers of fat.
Scapegoatís gone, veilís been lifted Ė now its time to face facts.
I had hated myself. For which, thereís no easy cure.
But I'd never have guessed what I was about to endure.
My grim realisation was not as clear as it is now
Itís taken time and reflection to solve the why and how
So superficial I was that the weight-loss pleased me,
My new body confidence brought me much glee.
It took a short step in learning that when building your self-worth up,
Needn't do it yourself, if others will do it - you're in luck.
The more notches you make, the more of them like you,
Each stamp of approval means youíre worth something too.
But this trick doesnít work, itís short shrift at best,
Such validationís unstable and needs constant redress
All that matters in this system is that they want you,
No connection required, don't need your desire too.
Soon I became an object, a thing merely of which you approve,
Such validation is addictive, not before long it consumes you.
This game is never over, the self-worth is never won,
For approval this fleeting, this shallow has soon gone.
Your entire self-worth crashes right down to the ground,
By one mild-mannered rejection, a snide comment or frown.
It soon left me quite hollow, couldnít have liked myself less,
How could finding some comfort possibly worsen this mess?
But hand in hand with this issue - there's a darker reveal,
A vice with such danger, it barely seems real.
I sought solace in drugs, to liven my day,
It didnít take long Ďtil my life went astray.
In order to find out how this all came to be,
Iíll need you to understand 'her' grip over me.
So allow me to introduce a few "friends" of mine
If you greet them but once, then youíll find them divine.
Thereís Mandy and Katie, and the one just called "G",
And last but not least, is Tina you see.
The last one of these has a much darker side,
Deep down sheís evil, she'll eat you alive.
Or better yet still, she'll have you do it yourself,
You'll follow her whispers, and youíll ruin your health.
At first you'll be fine and you'll tell yourself so,
But Tina works quickly, there's not long to go.
Youíll chomp and youíll chew, youíll pick and youíll scratch
Youíll end up a shell, thatís Tinaís one catch.
Other than that sheís perfectly fine,
Youíll fall apart slowly, one piece at a time.
And then thereís the psychosis - well thatís just a treat,
When the shadows start watching you walk down the street.
Still, thereís nothing quite like puffing clouds all the time,
Till five days, no sleep and Iím still writing in rhyme.
Havenít eaten for days, the fatís no problem now,
My ribs start protruding, face looks gaunt but wait, how?
I had the whole thing in hand, it was just once a week,
Thereís just one final shard left, I can't help but freak
The story gets worse, believe you and me,
When Tinaís got hold thereís no getting free
The minute you try to stop smoking shard,
Full depression sets in and you crash way too hard.
If she canít get you using then coming off it, she will,
"All the pain will soon stop" T whispers, "if you'd just pop that pill"
But the downers donít work, Tina makes sure thatís a fact,
Sheís not done with you yet, she'll first get you the sack.
Youíve got no money now, so you start helping her out,
You start selling her round Ďcause your fix was in doubt.
But look what you've done! Youíve passed her along,
You know what will happen and know full well itís wrong.
And this was my fate, and so you will see,
There isnít much left of a discernible me.
Itís too late for me now, too much of me's gone.
Nobodyís left here to save, if there ever was one.
But Wait! Hold up! Hang on just a secÖ
It isnít quite over, that bitch hasn't won yet.
I had forgotten that feeling, that desire to fight back,
The anger inside that builds you up to attack.
Iím starting to remember someone I used to be,
I was weak but tenacious; few others best me.
My resources are depleted and psychosis set in,
Itís hard to stay sane when your mind's wearing thin.
Itís important that I know I'm not beaten yet,
Got some tricks up my sleeve, that bitch won't ever forget.
Well, what happens next? Iím sure youíre dying to know
The middle is all done with, just the ending to go.
Now Ė donít get frustrated but I just canít tell you the rest,
I donít know how it ends, I'm still living it - I confess.
Can't predict what will happen, perhaps there's one guess I can,
It wonít end with a fizzle. It will end with a bang.
Right now Iím alone, lost - no clear path in sight,
The state that Iím in, would give anyone a fright.
If all other attempts fail, then only one end is left,
Say it's the easy way out, you call me selfish to choose death.
Your ignorance is very telling, no need to say more,
I understand it all now, as clear as crystal I'm sure.
Youíll never quite get it, not sure youíll ever quite see,
The pain that Iím feeling and the emptiness that fills me.
After all Tina's done, she hasn't take me whole,
Sheís helped things along, granted - she took her toll.
But cast your minds back...there were problems before,
All Tina has done, is to seize the prey at her door.
I was lost before I met her and even before that,
Had not a shred of self-worth, not even a scrap.
It was taken from me, before I even knew,
I was made to believe that somehow I needed you.
Tried so hard to fit in, to obey all of the rules,
To alter myself so I'd be liked by you fools.
I eroded away at the person I could've been.
By tempering myself down, so what's real was unseen.
All of my focus, time, energy were spent,
Playing the role you wanted and the 'real' part just went.
When I finally stopped caring about your version of me,
There was nothing else left there, no person to be.
So I died long ago, certainly anything worth saving.
That person isn't real, don't you? The one that youíre craving.
It was all a smart act, a ruse, a charade.
I played the part well, t'was unwittingly hard.
The impersonation laid on, worked more than it should,
Since it made all you like me more than I ever could.
How dare you remark callously on my final act?!
You have said quite enough haven't you, as a matter of fact.
The blame must be pointed at one of us, three.
One must be the culprit but is it You, I or She?
I know who I'd bet on, let's not dwell on that,
Firing guilt at each other, won't take it all back.
Tina's portion of blame is a catalyst's share,
Can't find her guilty if I kick away the chair.
It's funny that now's the time that I find,
The root of the problem was not me or my mind.
No solution to be gleaned, can't go back to the past.
Only the future left ahead and Iím not sure Iíll last.
Not giving up yet, I wonít just accept such a fate,
With some luck and some willing, it won't be too late...