Poetry

The Wolf Inside

Another special thanks to Heretics, Lovers, And Madmen for publishing this piece. How our minds in dreams can manipulate our fears is quite powerful.

Heretics, Lovers, and Madmen

“It was only a dream, but I still knew
the soul behind your eyes wasn’t yours.
Like a wolf in sheep’s clothing.”
It was only a dream, but I still knew the soul behind your eyes wasn’t yours. Like a wolf in sheep’s clothing, you watched me with a predator’s eyes. I was enthralled and terrified at the same time, not knowing what to expect. Not knowing if you were truly there every now and again when I saw how the sunlight made your blue eyes even more striking. And though he didn’t hurt me while living under your skin — this time — nothing was stopping him. Not even me. Isn’t it strange? Even in my dreams I’m frozen into submission, waiting for what was to come.
While my love for you
will never change,
I can’t help but wonder
if you’re the one
looking back at me.

©…

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Poetry

This Is Me

“I made a home in this darkness.
But home is not a prison.
I am worthy. To be me.”

This life of mine has never been an easy one. That’s no secret. But I’m alive. And that counts for something, right? I may have made a home in this darkness. But home is not synonymous with prison. Home is not a place where I can’t be loved just as I am. Home is not a place where I cannot be happy in my own skin. Because these scars are proof of my resilience. To keep pushing forward. To keep fighting. And I no longer bear them with shame. That weight is no longer mine to bear. It was never supposed to be mine. Home is a place where I broke through every barrier that was erected against me. And you know what? I might be bruised, but I’m fucking brave. I’ve broken through barriers. I’ve overcome. I’ve risen. I’ve proven that I am worthy of love and happiness. I have proven that I am worthy. To be me. To become so much more. Just as I am. And I’m going to keep going without apologies.

I make no apologies for who I am. Because this is me. Scars and all.

© Sarah Doughty

This is me,
so take me as I am
or get out of my way.

This was inspired by the song
“This Is Me” by Keala Settle
from The Greatest Showman.
This is my anthem.

Random Thoughts, Updates

Year In Review

The last few weeks I’ve spent a lot of time pondering the rest of this year and what it might entail, as well as setting some goals for 2019. You see, I’ve realized that it’s far more important for me to be who I want to be, rather than whoever or whatever I might have been. This year brought a great many wonderful things my way and I couldn’t possibly count them all without forgetting some.

One of the most important reasons I set out to share my writing is to help people going through hell (or recently freed from) their own hell. No one deserves to feel alone. We Will Not Be Silenced was an anthology and a cause I am passionate about. Because I am a survivor.

I’m not sure what roadblocks 2019 has in store for me, but I know I’m not going to let anyone hold me back from being me, as I did a few times this year. I’m going to do my best to be a better friend, a better writer, a better mother, a better wife, and a better person. Like I’ve always been.

But I won’t hold back any longer. I won’t let the actions of anyone in my past that has hurt me, used me (or anyone I love) dictate how I move forward. With luck, I’m going to be me, only this time, without chains. Without dragging any dead weight behind me. I’m going to continue with my ethos and try to help more people, as well as myself, along the way.

I’ll do my best to be a better person going forward.

~ Sarah Doughty

Poetry, PTSD and Awareness, Uncategorized, Updates

Testify! – A Collaboration

A piece of grave importance that is very relevant and needed in today’s society. Please take a few minutes to give this one a read.

Blood Into Ink

Testify

Elephants in the arena,
drowning out the stories as
we all hear them,
stomping on
the flowerbed scenery
they’ve built around your garden of rot,
and without a
second thought,
sold the world a
wilting centerpiece
(Nicholas Gagnier)

I
And His Daughter Prayed for Her
She didn’t really know why
She prayed she’d not meet a guy
At a party; ‘cause he’d liked beer
That sudsy stuff she’d now fear

II

The louder we toast
The better the truth we spew
Just another pint
The truth becomes toxic stew
We’ll all agree
Got the votes of the old crew
Now let’s all meet
At Four P’s and grab a brew
(Stephen Fuller)

Oh! look at him
when the venom drips from his slithering tongue
and he moans and screams
to validate his flagrant lies
and the white privilege
agrees in complete unison

Hiding behind the female prosecutor

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Poetry, PTSD and Awareness, Updates

Asking For It

“Before you point that accusatory finger
in my direction, remember this:
I never asked for it.”

The sun is setting and I feel the cold seeping into my bones. I feel the life bleeding out of my feet, leeching into the ground. And I stand here, breathing smoke into the sky. Because that’s all I have left to give — pieces of my broken spirit. And that’s all that remains after the vultures picked me apart. So before you point that accusatory finger in my direction, remember this: I never asked for it. I never gave the wrong signals. I didn’t deserve all you forced upon me.

And how could I have known better? I was barely old enough to walk, let alone understand what vile things you wanted from me. If you wouldn’t blame a child, then why blame the teenager for going to a party? Why blame the woman that was followed home from work? It’s time everyone takes a hard look at the patterns. Those men saw something they wanted, and they took it. With complete disregard for their victim. And I suppose that’s part of the point. They have the power. They need it. So they take it wherever they can get it.

So, if you are a victim, and you’ve ever felt that finger pointing in your direction, know that no matter what anyone tells you — You. Are. Not. To. Blame.

© Sarah Doughty

Illustration via @harumi_hironaka.

I am sharing this again today, not because I feel the need to repost it, but because I feel it’s necessary to reiterate to the world that there is, in fact, a culture. It exists and there is a reason that women (for the majority) do not come forward until sometimes decades later, if at all. Society immediately rejects them.

She shouldn’t have been at that party.
She shouldn’t have been wearing those clothes.
She shouldn’t have given him 
eyes….
Where’s the evidence to prove this happened?
Why didn’t she come forward immediately?
… and the list goes on.

So, this is for all the survivors out there — both the ones that have used their voices (and especially for Dr. Ford, for having the bravery to speak out in a public, televised inquiry, despite having been harassed and given multiple death threats by even considering doing so) and those that have survived in silence — know that it was not your fault. My thoughts are always with the people that have suffered at the hands of monsters and I hope that at the very least, someone will find comfort with these words. Just knowing that you aren’t alone might be enough.


I also want to state that I am not claiming that Kavanaugh is guilty, because I believe in the “innocent until proven guilty” principles this country is based upon. However, this does not mean that I believe that Dr. Ford is not telling her truth. Something happened to her, and I believe her. After thirty-some years, you wouldn’t remember something in such vivid detail if it wasn’t a major event in your life. I know this from experience. There are many things I wish I could erase from my mind, but alas, they are burned there like a brand and they will never go away as long as I live. These are not the accounts and emotional responses of a person that is fabricating a story.

Random Thoughts, Updates

Saving Her

A few days ago, I wrote about something very important to me. How she’s helped me over the years. I thought it was fitting to share actual photos and a little history about her. To celebrate her life, as she was then, and how she is now. Before it ends.

Lovelies, meet Pumpkin.

This was taken shortly after she was rescued, and she’d put on the much-needed thirty pounds of weight. Looking back, I can almost see the gratitude in her eyes for giving her a new chance at life. From the first day, she was always by my side….

And from the first moment she met this little boy several years later, she was smitten. Anytime he cried, she was there to soothe him. Her favorite moments were the ones like these….

Ever since, she has taken care of him, just as she has done for me. My family has been lucky to have her in our lives for over twelve years. The only problem is that we don’t know how much time is left. I see the clouds in her eyes and how stiff she feels when the weather changes or the temperatures are too cool. But, despite all that, she never stops taking care of us.

Every day, she leaves me
with this question:
Who saved whom?

© Sarah Doughty

Random Thoughts

Life

Hello loves. I am here to bring you a quick, albeit grim report. My activity here has dropped the past two days because my mother is in the hospital with heart failure.

I don’t yet know the extent of the damage or the prognosis. But I will try to keep everyone updated and try to keep up with posts as I’m able.

Please keep us in your thoughts and please don’t think I’m disappearing.

Sarah Doughty

Poetry, Updates

You Must Be New Here — A Weyward Sisters Collaboration

“Here’s a good rule of thumb:
If you don’t want to be called Tiny,
then don’t call me Baby.”

© Sarah Doughty

This was just a small sample of a much larger badass collaboration about etiquette in the online community. Once again, I’m honored to have been a part of the Weyward Sisters. It was fun to write, with some spice added on top. Special thanks to Sudden Denouement for publishing the piece. To read the full piece, click here.

PTSD and Awareness, Updates

Blood Into Ink: Your Writing Wanted

The incredible people at Blood Into Ink are looking for guest writers to submit pieces that coincide with the backbone of their collective effort: surviving and overcoming all forms of abuse or neglect. It is a safe space to share stories, connect with other survivors, and be a part of a community that understands what it means to survive. I’m honored to participate in this collaborative. If you’re interested in learning more, click here.

Poetry, Random Thoughts

Running Low

“My well of hope is running low.
There’s only a few drops left and
they’re evaporating at an alarming rate.”

I’m sorry that I’m not perfect. I’m sorry that what I’ve done has come up short. I’m sorry for always being sorry. As much as I try to be a good friend, a good wife, or a good mother, somewhere along the way, I mess up. And I fear that no matter what I do, or want to do, nothing will be enough. But that’s the way of the world. At least, it’s my world. And today, my well of hope is running low. There’s only a few drops left and they’re evaporating at an alarming rate.

In grade school, I was the one parents forced their kids to accept. And while I was tolerated for a little while, I could always hear the snickering behind me. I could hear the irritation in their voices when they finally told me I was no longer worthy of being a friend of pity. That I was the one hated — the one they bullied and said it was only a joke.

High school wasn’t much different. I was the one with access to a car so I could be one they called when they wanted to see someone else. I was the smart one. Tolerable just long enough to cheat off my tests or to copy my homework. I was the one too miserable to make any profound effort — because nothing was ever good enough — what my abuser told me at home every night was reinforced each and every day at school by people. My friends. My enemies. My bullies.

Over the years, not much has changed. I’ve found a few real friends. They are few and far between. And, though I do my best, it’s never enough.

© Sarah Doughty

No, I’m not okay. But I will be.