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For Me

INTRODUCTION I'm not 100 percent sure of who I am and that is OK. Sometimes I feel an overwhelming amount of self-inflicted pressure when it comes to the age-old question, "Who am I and what is my purpose?" But my identity will always be evolving and I'm learning to roll with the changes. I do know that I am 26 and 2018 has been my most formative year of learning how to stand on my own. My self-confidence is not always consistent. It remains in a developing state of self-love. Only until this year have I become more accepting of my facial and body features, big hair, and quirks. I now try to show more respect for myself and gratitude for what I have; an overdue necessity. During years of toxic opinions about myself, I wasn't comprehending how exhausting of an activity negative talk is. I should have been building myself up instead of tearing myself down. Good news is - there's power in a glow up. It's not easy to accept mistakes and

forgive myself, but I'm working on this. I've gained strength from taking risks, being more assertive, and having a clearer vision of what I want. My life has three pillars in addition to myself - my family, community and the love of my life. I'm trying to be more mindful of all three and the support they gift me as I'm slowly becoming more comfortable leaning on others when I feel like I'm slipping into old ways. With tools I already have, I can manifest my power and balance on a beam between being independent and still finding refuge in those close to me. Thank you for being here on this journey with me. With care, Jenay Ross

Thank You For Being Here is a catharsis of self-discovery and personal truth @TYFBeingHere // @jenayross / #ThankYouForBeingHere Photos of Jenay by @madimont

STRONGER i am stronger than i was yesterday and will be stronger tomorrow

TO THEM the moment your hands glided over her curves like yours did on mine you neglected respect for me i had known i was yours but you were never mine

AS I AM i stumble over words in my head and feel you staring at me while my eyes whip around the room i have an internal battle with myself, the cruelest enemy pulse racing just to formulate half a sentence "what's wrong?" you ask i fear saying the wrong thing words choked in my throat but saying nothing feels damaging for us both i finally get brave although convinced i'm not making any sense can you make sense of me? i'm sensitive and emotional unsure of why i'm crying but even when i'm picking myself apart you still want me as i am and i begin to want myself too

I CAN i try to tell myself i can, more than i can't and that habit isn't an easy one to keep nonetheless i set an intention to seek out more opportunities even if they feel out of reach i notice a need to manifest courage to be more significant than i feel i need to be unafraid to speak my truth brave when asking questions all while rooting myself in gratitude for what i have done and will do

SPINNING THROUGH FIRE anxiety is poisonous when possessing my body i'm no longer the same overcompensating to remain strong agitated and stressed from doing it all stressed from wanting to do more (help) it burns in my belly, my chest my brain spins through fire trying to find an escape and it's unclear what could save me from this as the anxiety wraps around my bones, my muscles, my organs i feel small trapped in a way of life i know isn't meant for me

SEE YOU AROUND i can play back the moments that pulled us apart like an old movie reel the memories are choppy in black and white scratched with poor audio your side, my side words flying back and forth as if we're serving to win points in a game of friendship that allows for no winners i'm exhausted we're riding different waves your empty apologies making it easier to walk away because what we had may have only been needed before and it's completely fine

HOLD ON sometimes i believe the devil on my shoulder she slanders my character and belittles my being you're not enough, you're not enough you're not enough, you're not enough my spirit fears it will abandon me so i hold my own hand a little tighter

SUCCESSFUL despite the pain i am here taking it day by day and that in itself is success


Thank You For Being Here: Issue 2  

Issue #2 of Thank You For Being Here. Poetry by Jenay Ross. Photos by Madison Montgomery.

Thank You For Being Here: Issue 2  

Issue #2 of Thank You For Being Here. Poetry by Jenay Ross. Photos by Madison Montgomery.