A Germaphobe’s Hell by Valerie Parente
When someone else understands the anxiety I’ve been feeling for half my life
I don’t feel comfort, I feel competition.
I worked from the inside out to walk through this hell
and now you’re telling me to turn around and walk with everyone else.
No, I don’t want the world to change their mind and say that my mental strife was justified
don’t tell me that my fears were right all along.
Why would I want to see my disorder become mainstream
after you spent years telling me that my pain is unique?
I understand the necessity to chain us all down as a way to protect ourselves
but I can’t pretend it doesn’t feel like hell
to be told to back-track all your progress
because now it really is a matter of life or death.
– Valerie Parente (4-13-2020)