Chronic illness v mental health

I just wanna lay in a ball and sob til I can’t breathe
The pain so intense, from this world I have to leave,
Searing pain ripping through my bones
Trying to get out of bed causing the initial whimpers and groans,
Burning flames of soreness in each muscle is suffocating
The Illness that’s torn me from athlete to disabled, which I’ll spend my life hating,
Exhaustion knocking me off my feet
The days blurring into one and everything on repeat,
Popping pills without purpose and begging my GP
Surely there is something he can do to help with this torture and set me free,
Every joint cracks with an almighty pop
Knees so damaged I regularly drop,
The grinding so uncomfortable it makes me feel sick
Not a single movement can be made without a click,
Fibromyalgia and other diagnoses killing me from head to toe
I’m at rock bottom, any lower I don’t think I can go

Dysphoria despite

Two years on testosterone and over a year post top surgery
Yet I still feel sick some days in the mirror at the reflection staring back at me,
Despite the beard my face looks too feminine
I wonder if people can sense the anxiety I hold within,
Despite the mass of body hair all I see is hips
Can you see my hesitation every time my name leaves your lips?
Despite the deepness of my voice all I hear is female
Passing should be my freedom but I’m trapped in dysphoria’s jail,
Despite my muscles and strong veins that stand out
I fear you look at me and assume I was a girl scout,
Despite a flat chest, no longer with breasts I’m desperate to hide
This self hate often leaves me contemplating suicide,
Despite all my ID and documents telling you I’m male
Every day feels like a test in which I’m convinced I’ll fail,
Despite being called boyfriend, uncle and dad
I’m paranoid about being misgendered and it’s driving me mad,
I was born in the wrong body and I’m proud to be transgender
But it doesn’t stop the struggles to which I surrender,
Open and loud in my advocacy for the LGBT community
But I’m speaking for them and hiding from me,
I love my scars but not the way they make people stare
I’m guilty of lying when I say I don’t care,
I am a man and I confess sometimes I still feel like a freak
Honest when I say – some days I am strong, on others I am weak

Torn apart by the global pandemic

I cannot remember when I saw you last
The months are turning into an ancient past,
Weeks of chaos yet boredom rife
Struggling to remember our previous life,
I long to hug my nan and on her soft skin gently place a kiss
To reminisce on our days of football in which I so dearly miss,
My seven month old niece who will have forgotten the way her uncle held her tight
I’ll smile with all the love I have for her at our pictures until we reunite,
A deep miss for my mum like I have never felt before
I promise to never take her for granted anymore,
Fresh air and the sun warm on my skin
These tools used to help me battle the demons within,
Parks and walks in the woods to help the kids burn their energy
Family days out and drives, just how life should be,
Trapped indoors like prisoners in a cell
Struggling with no idea of when there will be an end to this hell,
I wash my hands, stay inside and keep myself busy
But I’m losing my mind and need to be set free,
This killing virus in which we are no closer to a cure
Taking the lives of thousands, there is no discrimination, regardless of rich or poor,
Coronavirus the global pandemic which struck in twenty-twenty
One of the life-changing moments to go down in history

A stolen childhood

You are only my father through biology
You rip the meaning from that word so it’s just a terminology,
You are not worthy of being called dad or any similar title
You are my sperm donor, nothing else about you vital,
To change your ways, my siblings and I were never enough
You were supposed to be our protector and show us unconditional love,
Instead your heroin addiction took priority
Your money used to feed your addiction over ever getting a birthday present for me,
On your occasional visits I was overwhelmed by the stench of beer
Terrified to the core, and then again from our lives you’d disappear,
Traumatised by the blood baths after you beating my mum
Laying a hand on a woman doesn’t make you a man, it makes you scum,
Regularly on the run from the police, an act of guilt
After numerous drug raids of our house a tolerance was built,
Years of sitting on the top step listening to my mum cry
This wasn’t a childhood, it made me want to die,
From kidnap to using me in prison visits, my nappy with your drugs filled
The life in which I’d need years of mental health services to rebuild,
One reunion from eight to twenty eight
You taught me how NOT to be a man, you’re what I use to self motivate,
I am not bitter, I do not hate, I am whole
I do not wish for your excuses or sorrow, even an apology for the childhoods you stole,
It is you who lost and will die alone
Whilst I’m rich with love and a family in a place we call home,
For now I’ll live freely knowing one day my phone will ring with the news
Reminding myself that it was me or drugs and it was repeatedly the latter you choose

Fibromyalgia is killing me

I look into your eyes silently pleading
Desperate for you to understand what I’m needing,
My body battered and mind throbbing
Overwhelmed by this illness which is life robbing,
Exhaustion pushing me beyond limits in which I can cope
Twenty-eight years old and rapidly losing hope,
In pain from the second I wake until the moment I fall asleep
The need for an end pulling me in deep,
My muscles knotted, my joints continuously cracking
An onslaught from this condition that never stops attacking,
Crippling agony every day I endure
Painkillers non effective, certainly no cure,
Simple tasks excruciating for me to complete
I’ve lost the fight and sadly accept defeat,
Deteriorating at a rate that’s difficult to accept
No strength or energy for me to resurrect,
My family I can no longer offer anything
Only stress and struggle that I bring,
I lay in bed in darkness, consumed by guilt and fear
My frantic mind racing, picturing your lives without me here

Assessment or interrogation

They call it an assessment, I call it an interrogation
A panic attack and sickness beforehand due to the anticipation,
Questioned so extensively as if I was guilty of a crime
Intensively listened to and watched like I was auditioning for pantomime,
You question and question as if trying to catch me out with a lie
Is your purpose to understand my disability or to crucify?
My mouth dry and heart pounding from the anxiety
Like a bird trapped in a cage under your spell and I just need to fly free,
You add in random questions that I feel have no relevance
You seem to be disbelieving despite my proof and evidence,
You know every little detail about me and I just know your name
What do you know about my illness and the never-ending pain?
You give me points based on my answers, not the level of my suffer
Get confirmation from healthcare professionals to see I’m no bluffer,
You invade on my privacy without the blink of an eye
Audaciously you make me repeat this process and I just want to die,
You do not see my tears or how constant my body fails
How hard I try to be ‘normal’ but my mind lives in high secure jails,
I ask you to remember you’re human, the same as me, when you’re deciding the outcome of your report
My life in your hands like I’m on trial in court,
You have me exposed, stood naked for you to slaughter
I now impatiently await the brown envelope in which you are the news reporter

Dragged into war

You have never met me, you barely know my name
One piece of information which you drag into your dirty, narcissistic game,
Based on my age you say I cannot love the woman you horrifically abused
Messaged me on social media desperate for a reply that I maturely refused,
Because I am transgender you talk about my genitalia and label me a freak
Do I hit an insecure nerve because I can see through your act a ‘man’ so very weak?
You’ve threatened me with violence and lied to have seen me on the street
I can see you hunting for further ways to control, abusers like you can never accept defeat,
Next I was a criminal so social services did police checks at your request
They came back clear but you still target me, you’ve become obsessed,
Justice happened when you failed to turn up to the battle of custody for the kids in court
I cried with relief and happiness, this victory an end I thought,
Yet bored, bitter and lonely your ugly head has reappeared
Breaking down the walls of happy and healing, just as I had feared,
This time nastier, the accusation that I’m a pedophile
And for a while,
I’m shocked to the core and have to force back my bile,
But whatever you do you will not stop me loving my family that you tragically failed
You can spread lies and hate but in bed at night just remember the real you has been unveiled