The Diary of Elliot Parker

.: Entry One-Hundred and Eight :.

My name is Elliot Parker.

So what are those wonderful things I am looking forward to? How can I rebuild myself?

Because that is what I have to do, I suppose it is the only choice I have.

So what do you do when you finally get your freedom after being trapped in some kind of bizarre horror show of an existence?

First, I get to stop beating myself up. It is ok to not be ok. It is fine to let yourself feel hurt and grieve as long as I can stop letting it consume me.

So I started by dying my hair. Not some crazy colour, not some false version of me I can project on the world and pretend that I am ok with like wearing a mask. No, I am stopping doing that. I am stopping this stupid need to hide how I feel. So I dyed my hair sort of close to my natural colour-ish, again, only this is the closest match I managed to find. So there it is, the first layer of my mask is gone.

I won’t be beating myself up or getting mad at myself for crying anymore. I am releasing resistance when I do, I am finding some semblance of healing when I free myself from pretending to have things together.

So what else?

I am going to paint my toes. It sounds small, but it is a little bit of pampering, it is a little self-care and self-love beyond doing the bare minimum to pretend to be ok. Painting my toes is for me, people at work don’t see my toes, I don’t wear peep-toe shoes, I don’t wear flip flops really, my toes are my private little pampering and sparkle that get to be my little nod to say it is ok.

What next?

I am going to listen to some music that feels more like summer, feels brighter and more fun and more sassy. I haven’t listened to music in a while so this will be a nice change.

I am going to be proud and draw a little bit. A little doodle once in a while.

I am going to check in more on here, write more on here, not keep bottling things up.

This can be my safe space for a while too.

I am going to meet up with Hal and spend some time with my brother from another mother. A good quality hang out just the two of us and catch up on everything. I am going to have fun and eat junk with him and talk about everything. I’m going to open up to him.

I am going to honour JJ in some way, however that is I will find a way that feels right. The best dog ever that would be the clown to make me laugh when I was broken hearted, my best friend and baby boy.

What else?

I am going to shave my legs and wear a pretty dress and go out with Dyl for dinner and have a lovely date and spend some time together. I want to make sure he knows just how much I appreciate him. And yes I know I started that sentence with I am going to shave my legs, it’s a special occasion so I won’t be doing the rushed ones I have done the last two weeks, I am going to take my time because I can’t keep scratching skin off with the razor when I rush. The razor is meant to cut my hair not my damn legs into ribbons.

This post was interrupted. I received a message from a friend. You see not long after thinking about trying to find some way to honour JJ, trying to think of a way that I could have some consistent reminder of him with me always an event fell into perfect place. The message said that my tattoo artist had had a cancellation, on a day that would have been impossible to get time on and my friend thought of me. I had asked about getting a time slot either yesterday or today but my artist was fully booked. So when the message came through I thought this is brilliant. So within twenty minutes I had gotten dressed and left to go to the studio.

So I got a tattoo on my right leg, the side that JJ had been trained to walk to. I got something that both JJ and I loved playing together, bubbles. It seemed like the most perfect way to honour him. I needed to do something, to give myself some way, some place to grieve.

Last night was the first night I wasn’t bursting in tears before I dozed off. That’s not to say I slept well, not at all, I woke up regularly. It drives me a little crazy that I haven’t slept through the night yet. But this was the step in the right direction. It didn’t even hurt that much today, it was fine at work and now here I am. Finally, with some way to feel like JJ is with me still, in some kind of way. I don’t feel so alone, JJ was wonderful like that, he was always there always excited to just be with me and spend time doing whatever. Being separated was always something very hard on the both of us, we were so in sync together. He was as much a part of me as I might have been to him. That’s the most precious thing about having a dog. They become part of you, they are impossible to forget but the most horrendous pain in their absence. He is so irreplaceable and he will always be a part of me, in my heart and now on my skin. It is the perfect way to have him with me always. Now hopefully as the ink heals I will heal at least a little with it.

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