Because I cry on every birthday. Because the smell of my mother’s cigarettes still comforts me. Because I don’t really like my therapist. Because I can’t sing. Because I once wept at the image of wet roses wrapped in brown paper. Because I have to force myself to throw tickets, receipts, and notes away. Because I adore people and because I hate them. Because I watched a video of a tarantula molting just to make myself feel uncomfortable. Because my parents divorced. Because I have sores in my mouth from gnashing my teeth in my sleep. Because driving through the carwash makes me emotional. Because everything makes me emotional.
I do it to make myself feel guilty. To talk about flowers and stars. To talk about dog shit and pubic hair. To make my mother cry. To tell her I’m sorry. To put my fourteen year-old border-collie, smelling of urine and wet grass, to sleep. To worship the stretch marks on my thighs. To hoard things to myself like a dragon. To hold in the swell of feelings brought on by gardenia bushes. To practice going underwater and holding my breath. To find warmth in my grandfather’s vacant gaze during the Super Bowl. To keep myself from going out too much. To hit harder than my fists can. To get hit harder than the body can.