“Each time I’m asked to tell about myself, I find myself starting the same way: “My name is Kelsey and I’m nineteen..” but what I’d really like to say is: “My name means island of the ships but once I found a translation that said I’m a burning shipwreck— not a burning ship but a ship that has caught fire after the wreckage and well, I’d say that’s more fitting.”
I’ve learned that people don’t have time for about me’s. They need two things: a name and an indication you’re someone special.
The doctors, they want facts not details. “I broke my leg when I was three, it’s a funny story actually—“ The right or the left?” Conversation over.
The teachers, they want interests, hobbies. You’re sad, yes, but what do you like to do? The adults are a spew of questions. What school do you go to? What classes are you taking? What do you plan on becoming? Got a boyfriend? No, stop.
People my own age are the worst. “I’m planning on an English degree with a concentration in creative writing.” Yeah, aren’t we all. So how many times have you, you know, done it?
I’m pulled apart, my interests traveling highway to my goals at a stop light at traffic hour, my medical history on a billboard for the world to see. But what about me?
Where’s the chance to say, “I hang on to fistfuls of poetry like loose change in my pockets, and I keep waiting for the day that the world turns upside down so I can swim with the stars. I’m not afraid of darkness, it’s a loneliness I can empathize with it. It’s the blackholes like cigarette burns inside of me that get troublesome. I walk through graveyards and read the dashes between years, each a story I’ll never know. Sometimes I create my own.”
No one, none of us know who we are anymore.”