Afraid of Spring

Nails peel
cracking, uneven- some long, some short
some painfully short. the skin peeling under the bed of my pinky nail.
I peel my skin and I eat it.
I can't keep walking. There's all this dead skin in my stomach, weighing me down.
the sides of my toungue are swollen and I continue biting on them.
I eat chunks of scalp- peeling the skin at the crown of my head until it's bloody and is mistaken for a freckle by those who see it.
 
I go to sleep with nothing under my nails and wake up with dirt bedded deep into them.
I want to hide in my scarves. I want to hide in my scars.
I can never find a comfortable pair of shoes. they all blister me when I wear them long enough.
 
My joints hurt when I move. 
When I lay, my lower back screams.
When I sit with my legs crossed for too long, my knees begin to wail and cry like newborn babies who refuse to take part.
Hiding isn't enough anymore because I keep wanting to go out.
 
What has my dad taught me?
 
Why drink alcohol if you don't plan on getting drunk?
Mess me up. Every night. Alone. I'll throw up everything and feel proud for having an empty stomach.
 
If I wake up and my kids can't smell the wreak of tobacco on my breath, has another day really started?
 
The only bottle I can look at and ever feel safe about is a message in a bottle.
Even then, I'm afraid that the bottle will shatter and the message inside will read
"I love alcohol more than you. You will not be able to seperate yourself and the pain that I have caused you.
Your parenting will resemble mine."
 
I crack every single one of my joints every hour.
My ankles, each toe, each finger, my wrists, my neck and back- in both directions.
On father's day, my dad drank before picking us up and I cracked my neck so hard that I couldn't turn my head left or right for a week.
 
Every morning I wake my father up. Every morning his alarm doesn't go off.
He tells me he's trying. He tells me I'm not.
But he doesn't understand that if I try and HE fails that I break!
He tells me people look at him with respect now.
 
When I shrink, I can't return to being big. 
When I curl up, I can't open again.
When I cry, I can never stop.
 
In winter, I take 9.5 pills a day.
10.5 if you count my kid's gummy bear vitamin.
 
I'm worried that I will never know another way to be.
Nails peel, cracking.
I can't keep walking.
I'm worried that I will never know another way to be.
This poem is about: 
Me
My family

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