Honestly I have nothing to say. It all remains the same mess. It feels pointless repeating the same thing over and over. I continue maintaining myself moment by moment. Nothing else is even remotely possible right now. I have no desire to write, or even talk about what is in my head.
Where are you tonight? My mind is thick and slow, but sleep is elusive. I can’t shake the empty feeling from this afternoon. It is bottomless. Im adrift in the complexities of what my life has become. I want no part in this.
It was a short squat building hugged by dull government issue stucco and brick. a small green signed at the entrance competed with three male country deputies for introduction rights. All losing out to the metal detector and the REMOVE YOUR BELT signage. That is what welcomed me into this little slice of hell. “Hey little lady, that’s a pretty big truck”, brought a snicker from the three men. I didn’t have a reply, so I just shuffled forward in line. The inside of this building was just as unsightly as the outside. Lines of navy industrial plastic chairs flanked the outside of the small room, and split it down the center. The fluorescents made the chairs look gun-metal grey, each worn and scrapped by hundreds of thousands that came before me. The linoleum equally scuffed and pitiful. My eyes found the floor and stayed there. Riveted, or more likely, so embarrassed they had nowhere else to look. Nobody made eye contact, nobody said a word. The just stood in the line. It was as if all life had been sucked out of them as they passed thru the metal detector. It wasn’t looking for weapons, it was stealing our souls. Minutes ticked off the clock. At the end of the room was a large plexiglass window with a counter. The plexiglas stopped inches shy of the scarred pale wood counter. Each person had to lean over, face inches from that ugly surface to hear, and to be heard. Behind dozens of strangers eyes watching, dozens of ears straining. There was nothing but the chairs and the walls, so everyone seemed to be content to listen in to the conversation unfurling at the aged window. A lady sat behind the glass asking questions and taking documents. The pleading angry voices of those ahead of me made my heart hammer in my chest. I felt the small walls closing in and was doing everything in my power to not turn around and run out the door. There was no air, no life, nothing but pain in this place. I wanted no part in this play unfolding in front of this sad audience. But with each shuffle of a step forward I knew it would soon be my turn to stand before all these strangers and yell to make myself heard. I would have to tell this woman why I was there, and it would be me. I would be that person begging for help from the plain nondescript lady in brown sitting behind the yellowed glass. I was truly thinking I might not make it, and that my anxiety would get me to flee before my feet got to the window. I somehow managed. As I stepped to the window, I knew I had a full room behind me. Over the hour it had filled. Children clamored in the chairs. Babies fussed in their car seats. Hushed conversations were going on. The deputy stuck his head in and told everyone to move in. No blocking the door he admonished the crowd. I was up, it was now or never.
I walked the last two steps and made eye contact with the lady behind the glass. There was no cheerful, hi how can I help you. It was more like silence. I raised my voice, just enough and told her what I was there for. I slide the documents across to her. She took them and made copies. She was talking and I couldn’t hear her. There I was with my nose and inch from that filthy counter, neck bent at and impossible angle so I could talk to her and attempt to maintain eye contact. It was pointless. I told her I took medication, I need this done sooner. 7 weeks? no, I can’t wait 7 weeks…she looked back at me. “We don’t do that”. I looked back at her and asked her again. She said to wait and walked away. An audible collective sigh went up from all the strangers standing behind me. I could feel all their eyes on me. Their frustrations pushing against my spine. I was shaking, keeping my hold of the counter to keep myself from sitting down. It felt like forever, but eventually she came back and told me to sit. Now I had a room full of disgruntled, tired, and frustrated people staring at me. With nothing to do I found linoleum and waited eyes never budging. I took a while but eventually I sat down with someone. Flanked by a trainee that sat silent and watching. I told her why I need the meds, and that I couldn’t be without them. As the words left my mouth, I thought to myself, when did this become my life. That I would have to beg and plead with a government worker, or that I could not fathom a day without each of these pills. I hate all of it. I am not dumb though, I know it would be a really bad plan to be without them, especially as the stress ratchets up. So there I found myself in a plain bare office with a woman writing down everything I told her. I wanted nothing more than to get out of there. I was done with that squat ugly building and all the people checking their souls at the door. When I finally walked out into the grey evening I couldn’t tell where that flat cold sky ended and where I began. I felt about as dull and as vastly empty.
Wish I could say my mind has settled. It has not. I feel as if someone left the faucet on and every last ounce of energy, motivation, enthusiasm, courage, and willpower has left me. It feels rather hollow and sad sitting with what it left. I don’t even begin to understand how to shift back to where I was. It seems impossible. More than impossible, it seems unattainable. Where did all of my vitality and spark go? How quickly it is extinguished. I can’t help but feel overwhelmed. It is as if someone replaced that tough girl with this spineless creature, so set on finding a way out. How do they both exist in me? Why does one always seem to win.
I don’t even know what I’m going to do. My partner returns tomorrow. Part of me wants nothing more than to walk out that door. I honestly couldn’t tell you if I would come back. My gut tells me it would be a while. But I can’t walk out the door. There is all this work here. Finishing this paperwork to try to get myself some health coverage. All the business stuff that is up in the air, and most of all this property- 17 days away from foreclosure. To walk away would be irresponsible. To even take a break would not be okay. It is just so fucking much. When my mind invites me in to the darkest of thoughts I understand why. There is no grey area here. It is all or nothing. I don’t think that is a distortion either. What is there here now? there is enormous stress, and discontent. There is failure, and there is impending demise. How would anyone, let alone me, want to stay. It is a slow and steady state of torture. sure, it might be happening in beautiful surroundings, but it is torture none the less.
I don’t know if it is just my exhausted mind, but everything seems infinitely complicated right now. All these moving pieces, dependant on one another. Like some extremely difficult puzzle. Just when I think I have it sorted out another piece comes into play, and all my work seems to not make sense anymore. I’m left staring hopelessly at a pile of pieces, no corners or edges to work from. I have to start again, and try to find my way. It leaves me feeling unsettled and that nothing is ever accomplished. I am feeling useless. I try to tackle one thing, and find I must stop because I don’t have the answers I need, or the relevant information. I’m just hopelessly lost amongst so many issues. All beyond critical at this point. I am run ragged and am running out of ways to buy myself more time. another day to figure out another piece of the puzzle. Yet, what happens when you no longer care about the puzzle, or completing the image. It is meaningless to me. To say I could care less is an understatement. But in that moment I realize how much is left, and what I am giving up. To do so is to truly cut off my nose. Somewhere in all this there is something to salvage. How can I possibly be so fucking sure it is worth walking away? I’m not, so my mind creates a different alternative. A life without me. Sad, I know. But it just doesn’t scare me anymore. Maybe it never did. I’m walking a very fine line, and desperately trying to buy more time. Hoping that my mind will shift again. But in this uneasy, awful place that seems like forever.
Today has been all about moving snow, and avoiding thoughts. I guess I should edit that and say avoiding impulses. It is all about avoiding my mind telling me to get out. As is so often the case, it is persistent and hard to ignore. So I moved mountains of snow. Endless, mindless back and forth. Hours and hours. Over the past two days I have spent more than 14 hours on one tractor or the other. My mind just goes numb. I’m thankful for that, because to sit here in this house only feeds my thoughts.
I guess I have to wonder if this is my true desire? Is all this other stuff just window dressing? Is it putting a pretty, normal, distracting view on something that is far from pretty. This has been with me my whole life. When do we just accept it, and let me go? Why fight it, when it will only be there waiting for the next time. It never fucking leaves me. ever. It begs me to look and pay attention. Like a shiny coin laying on the sidewalk. It just demands that second look. I’m tired of it always being there ready to cause trouble. I know that it isn’t an “it”, and that it is me. Somehow I can stomach it better when I say it. To embrace that darkness and impulsivity as me if difficult. Because to think of my wanting so badly to extinguish all the good just breaks my heart. What ever did I do to bring this terrible bedfellow into my mind. I can’t imagine. There is no getting free.
not is the dsm sense, just the actual axis my world is on. These past two days have shifted so much. but most of all my ability to cope. There were a million things wrong, long before this nor’easter came thru. More than enough to make life more than difficult. But what I didn’t see coming was the family chaos, or the possibility that all these years I have been thinking my life was being organized around a document, that may now be all but useless. That I am now faced with fixing a problem I have not much knowledge or ability to correct. But what is so sad and disappointing is my head. I try so fucking hard to stay the course, and work to make things okay. But they never are. I can’t outrun my thoughts and my ingrained instinct to get out. What is the point of all the work, and all the years, if this is me? How fucking pointless. I’m useless. Why when everything gets hard does my fate roll out that welcome mat? Why do the thoughts swirl like magic behind my eyes. Each of them just begging me to take a step closer. Why when everything goes wrong do I instinctively chose to turn away, not stand and fight. All the good here is gone, it doesn’t register. Nothing. Blank. Only the oppressive wrapping of impulses. Honestly, I think it is because I just don’t care. I don’t care enough about myself, or this place, or those that love me. Maybe it is what is wrong with me. I can only see it one way or the other. To feel bathed in love, and caring and cry for all that is right with my people, or to, with just a blink, see nothing at all. Only cold hard calculated options. This is what is wrong with the suicidal mind. There is no grey, just one or the other. Is it just my reaching the outer edge of what I can cope with? Is it me daring to look closer at what is truly easier than this path I am dragging myself along right now. Why does my mind have to do this to me? over and over. It just never goes away. It may slide into the shadows for a while. But it never goes away. I know I am exhausted. That is a given. I know I need to step back and take a breath. All those years of distress tolerance don’t go to waste, not with a mind like this. I guess I am having one of those Why bother moments, and it scares me. I know I’m safe. I’m not there yet, but all the thoughts have come out to play and it is hard not to engage them. If nothing but out of habit. On my trail run in the snow all I could think of was stopping beneath one of those snowy trees and going to sleep. Sure, not your average suicidal thought, but there was something so inviting about pausing to sleep in the midst of the storm, never to wake again. It is these thoughts that pursue me. I don’t ask for them, and often don’t sense them coming till I have to tear my mind away and shift my focus. I guess this is what is wrong with me. I guess I maybe never should have lived thru that last time, and I struggle with my failure. The fact that I think of it as a failure only highlights my flawed and distorted thinking. It doesn’t matter. Even with the knowledge, it doesn’t matter. It changes nothing.
Alright, I’m done. Well done, actually. Completely and utterly fried. I don’t know if it is the lack of sleep. the endless days of juggling everything, or the reconnect after yesterday, but it is unreal. We are bordering on unhinged. And I’m not even done yet. I seriously need to shift my head. This is not a good place to be. I don’t like the moment when overwhelmed quickly becomes “fuck it, i’m done”. Not a good sign. definitely not a place to make any rational decisions. I need to settle a bit. Back off this path of thinking. I need to finish some more work, but I think the only option here in a nap. Maybe it will stop this cycle of thinking/ feeling and reset, so I can be a little more with it and less apt to leave for the nearest deserted island. I’m not talking about a vacation. I’m talking about leaving and never again setting foot on this property, or in this life. Because where my head is now, I could care less. None of it means a god damn thing.
I sit here in this empty drafty old house, thoughts rolling around in my skull like marbles. Skittering haphazardly, like they have been set loose over an old worn floor board. Each seemingly important, but none staying long enough to even examine. A cool numb muffled blanket of distance and disconnect doesn’t let me even get close. I just know they are there. They ping against the inside of my forehead before retreating into blankness. I ate, tasting nothing. I read, understanding little. The hours have passed since darkness fell in this strange place. I know I am just trying to keep myself in a neutral place. I understand why my mind is doing what it is doing. I just cannot handle all the information that is streaming in, not within the context of this fierce storm. I knew I might feel vulnerable tonight. It was okay with me. I cannot remember the last time I felt quite like this. I don’t normally straddle the fence. either I disconnect, feeling nothing or I don’t. It doesn’t cycle back and forth into that place and back in such a rapid succession. I can’t wait to go to bed, just to leave this strange edgy place behind. Tomorrow I need to figure out a great deal, that urgency is steadily pressing at me tonight. But tonight I just can’t. I’m looking at a pile of papers to fill out, and all I can feel is dread. Look away and it is gone. Just that fast. I’ll do it, and everything else that needs to get done, just not tonight. For now I need to go back to work. A barn full of horses have needs. A driveway needs plowing again. It all calls, but to do it I need to walk out onto that blowing snow. I need to stand beneath my tree and feel my heart race. It never doesn’t. It is forever. There is no time to get lost in thought now. I’ll be okay.
Anniversaries mean something different to just about everyone. Some find them joyous champagne fueled events, often involving sex. Others struggle with loss and grief when those magic numbers arrive on the desk calendar. Those are the anniversaries that come immediately to mind if you ask your average joe about them. There is a different sort of anniversary for a lot of people. The kind that may never ever be talked about. If it is, usually confined to conversations with close friends, or a trusted therapist. I’m sure most would not even understand. Most would never consider the day you were raped an anniversary, because they can’t get past the superficial sweetened Hallmark variety “Anniversary!!!” that is sold to all of us with every syrupy ad on tv. But think for a moment how important that moment is, that trauma, and how deeply etched it is. The date-time-weather is included. For some it may be a season, or a month, their mind having washed away the vestiges to date and time in an extraordinary effort to protect itself. For me early February is an anniversary. It is the date I brushed up against death so close, nothing but its cold embrace remained. It was icy, and cold. A hard wind-driven snow tore at my skin, and shut my eyes. This was no party. There was no champagne. definitely no sex. It was the night I chose to walk away from this existence. Striding off away from love. Away from those that cared so deeply for me. I gave up, and gave in. The never-ending voice in my head won that night. And so I departed, no fear, no nothing. My pain evaporated and a deep calm replaced it. A place of studied concentration. I, this person I have struggled to be, got lost in that fierce storm.
We are just shy of 4 days to the date. In the midst of a wicked coastal Nor’Easter, I left my home and walked to the end of my deck. In a gale so brutal breathing became difficult. Ice pinged off the siding so hard it was deafening. That was my only company in the dark, the tireless howling of the wind and snow. I never paused, or reconsidered. I was as cold as the frigid air surrounding this place now. Today, seven years later, another Nor’easter bears down on us. The timing so close, it is unavoidable not to revisit the past in my head. It wasn’t by choice. In fact, I was unaware of my concerted effort not to check the weather these past weeks. I tend to an everyday checker. compulsive in my need to know what exactly to expect on any given day. I didn’t note the change. It didn’t even register. But as this storm grew closer, it was impossible to ignore the endless news coverage and the posts from friends on FB declaring the end of the world. Well, not really, but you’d think so after visiting a supermarket today. It is the hard thing about anniversaries, they come round whether you want them to or not. Always present in the mind, marked forever by whichever event, happy, sad, horrible or tragic it was. You can’t out run them, or ignore them. Short of abandoning civilization and all forms of date/ timekeeping there is no escape.
So here I sit, awaiting the arrival of the first flakes of snow. I cannot predict how difficult or easy this might be. I know I cannot ignore it. I must accept the fact that it may well be hard not to allow my mind to wander back. I can accept wandering. That is just a part of this life, and the aftermath of my choices. What I cannot accept is to relive that night in my mind, alone in this house, in the midst of a storm. Thinking about and reliving are two totally different places. One safe and workable. One I am comfortable managing even if it is painful and anxious. To relive is to loosen the ties with the here and now. Sometimes completely losing track of time and place. It is not a common place for me, though I have been there before. Often it is preceded by a deep disconnect and feeling of numbness. I experience that as cold. bone chilling cold. I can disappear, losing time. Sometimes in my mind I feel as if I am actually within the event, but thankfully that is exceedingly rare these days. It takes a tremendous amount of psychic force to flip that switch. When triggered these days I retreat into a hollow grey place, completely devoid of anything. It is not painful like a flashback. It is exhausting and difficult to pull out of, but it doesn’t have that terrifying edge to it where your mind can’t quite grasp it isn’t really happening. To be transported, in mind and body back to a place of fear and trauma is unthinkably scary and hard.
I felt it was important to write a bit tonight, just to keep a finger on my “mental” pulse so to speak. There is a lot going on right now, but I have faith in my strength. I’m in a far better place than I have been. So, fuck it. Let it snow. Bring it on momma nature.
Having just swam to the surface of a deep sleep, I found myself disoriented and fearful. It had taken a number of attempts. It isn’t all that easy to wrestle free of seroquel’s grasp. I know it had taken a little while. A cold sweat was starting as my mind caught up with my now awake body. Then I heard it. I rustle just below me in the downstairs hall. My heart was going like a freight train and each and every muscle started priming itself to flee. Like a rocket preparing for liftoff. The fear pinned me to the bed. I started to roll over looking for the gun. But she’s not there. Nobody is here. Just me, alone. I rose every so quietly. My ears honed in on the rustle of bags. I lay my fingers over the 12″ chef’s knife in my mattress and swung my feet to the floor. I wasn’t going to sit there paralyzed. I was going to meet this one head on. Turns out it was the dogs. I must have forgotten to bungee one of the baby gates, though for the life of me I swear I did them both. My hazy sleep addled mind must me playing tricks on me…