i could hear the tubes filling with blood. my blood. i could hear it and it made my toes curl and my insides go all squidgy.  i was looking away. i always look away because i hate needles. i can't look.  i remember getting nauseous catching a glimpse of an iv in my hand pre-surgery.  

my blood pressure was high. again.  the nurse asked me about it and if it's something i talked to my NP about and I told her no, i had only come in once before last week and it was high then too.  it's doctor anxiety, i'm sure.  it's also brown person anxiety.  it's fat person anxiety.  it's 'i took the bus here and i've been feeling ick about the bus lately which goes hand in hand with brown person anxiety.'  i have privilege though. i know it.  i'm not black. i'm not indigenous.  i'm not the most marginalized of the marginalized. i filled out their questionnaires on depression and anxiety.  they gave them to me after i filled out my initial paperwork.  probably cautionary since i went into detail about how anxious i've been lately.  there aren't enough lines in your form for me to tell you why.  if i could boil it down to something that would fit into the small space you allotted i could say:  historical trauma. marginalization. trump.

i'm bracing myself for the lab reports. i cry on the bus to the coffee shop on the way home in between bites of a protein bar that tastes like sadness and self loathing. i can't eat them anymore. especially on public transportation. i was always scarfing down sugar free protein bars to and from some sort of workout class because i was always scared of passing out, like a part of me knew that i was existing on barely enough food to keep me going.  i was a vegetarian with a gigantic fear of carbs at the time so i was always carrying around quest bars, the lowest of the low carb protein bar options.  

i was grateful for the empty corner table at kainos, my favorite coffee shop.  i was grateful austin was working because i always get hugs from him no matter how busy the shop is. i drank my coffee. i ate my biscuit. i read my book and tried not to think too much about it all.  i need to parse it out. i need to let it all slowly make its way into my brain so i can digest all these conflicting emotions.  this need and want for my body to be different than it is.  this need and want to not change how i've been making decisions about exercise and food because this way has felt balanced.  watching my belly expand and grow and feeling conflicted because i do not love this body but i do not wish to change it because i've done that before and it doesn't work. 

how do you not feel like a failure when society says your body is shameful?  and if you don't work to change your body your behavior is shameful? 

i'm supposed to be writing poems about this kind of shit, i'm sure.