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Rhyme of the Ancient Millenial

Anessah Barker
4 min readDec 3, 2021


There’s this feeling I have that if I don’t tell this story soon, it will kill me. I feel the words catching in my throat, building up strength to strangle me. I feel them winding around my heart, squeezing. Despite the impending doom, I am faced with a major dilemma. I write. I delete. I write. I delete. I know how I feel. I understand what must be told but I don’t have or can’t seem to find the language to convey it. Either I will tell this story or it will be on my tombstone.

It’s been three months since my last confession — I mean my last article. I’ve wanted (read: NEEDED) to write but just could not. I sit here now, typing around my feelings, feeling the words at the edge of my fingers the same way you feel an almost forgotten thought on the edge of your mind. You can make out the concept of it but the actual shape eludes you. I type, hoping that as other words spill from me, those that need to be said come to the front of the line and topple over into sight and an existence outside of my soul, spirit, and mind. The words are written all over my face in smiles that don’t reach my eyes and clenched jaws and the tracks of tears that have dried on my cheeks. They still have yet to leave my heart and make it to the paper.

Maybe the problem is I want to offer too much cohesion for something so broken. Perhaps I can give it to you and release it from me in pieces.

I feel broken.

I don’t feel I was or will ever be enough.

I miss my mother and I resent her for all the times I wanted us to be closer and she rejected me.

I hate how I show up for people who would not show up for me.

I want to be celebrated but at the same time, I don’t know/feel that I am worthy of being celebrated.

I feel unremarkable.

I miss my mom.

I feel I am trying to constantly prove that I am remarkable while knowing deep down I am not.

I don’t know if I genuinely care or want to be seen as caring so that I am loved.

I question the motives of everyone around me including myself.

I feel untethered.

I miss my mom.

I wonder what my life would be like if I had loved myself as much as I loved the people around me.

I wonder what a day outside of my mind would look like.

I feel old and young, wise and clueless at the same time.

I realize how the desperation to belong can lead you to crazy lengths. One time we became Mormon because they offered us a version of family and community that no one else would or could at the time. Although we are no longer Mormon, I understand now that we weren’t lulled by the religion but by the fellowship. I’m terrified that my desire to be a part of something or be supported opened me up to joining an entire religion.

I wish I could offer my children more in terms of a village but I don’t know how to build from what I have been given and I didn’t have a village growing up.

I miss my mom but I’m mad because she didn’t offer my children the village that she and I didn’t have.

I don’t know if her not showing up was the result of evil genius or ambivalence. I remember her saying that I would be stronger for having done things without her. Now that she is gone, it’s true to an extent but I still wish she had been there because I don’t know if strength or memories are more vital to me now.

I’m scared of managing my grief and the grief of my children. It’s hard to explain to them that their grandma is gone while also facing the fact that their grandma, my mom, is gone.

My biggest letdowns come from expecting people to give me the same energy I give them.

I just don’t want to be forgotten.

Am I motivated by true kindness and love or just the fear of being useless and forgotten?

There!!! It’s all on the table now. You may sift through my shit at your leisure. I’m just glad I finally had the nerve to put it out there. Judge if you must. Relate if you can.

Thus ends the tale of the ancient millenial. Her captive audience closes the app and peruses whatever social media sites hold their attention.



Anessah Barker

Both a keeper and a weeper. A writer, a wife, a mother, and a life long scholar. BA English Literature(2013), M.LIS(2018), current MSW student. She/Her/Hers