Homeland and…

wow. Not really quite sure where to start. What an intense start to the season. It is really uncanny watching Claire Danes ride the bipolar roller coaster. It begs the question, is she acting? Guess it is probably something we will never know, but she sure captures it. Once you see it, experience it, live it, it becomes truly easy to spot. That being said the last episode stood the hairs on the back of my neck up. Think it was the image of the restraints and her struggling that did me in. Thankfully they fucked up the IV thorazine. Never seen anyone given IV thorazine. So I went from my oh my god moment, to a what the fuck- why didn’t they get that right. Gave me a breather and I got myself grounded. Least she wasn’t sitting in a puddle of drool when Saul showed up. I think that might have done me in. I still can’t even believe he showed up. Have to wonder what the long-term scheme is in his head. My only guess would be he just let her off the CIA leash. Once out she can track Brody alone and he can follow unbeknownst to her. Hmmm. Really makes me wonder.

Ok, back to that reaction. I don’t like restraints. Not to see them. Can’t imagine my reaction were I back in them. They make my stomach turn and my skin crawl. Sure I’m not alone in that reaction. Plenty of people the world over, crazy and not, that have the same response. For years hollywood has liberally assaulted us with them in movies, TV. Any time they need to put that stamp of “OUT OF CONTROL” on an individual in a scene they find their way into the shot. Guess that is the reality of them. At the very base level. They don’t use them unless that line has been crossed and they have no other options. I think there was a time when their use was very much common. That has changed to some degree. There are other options to bring to the table first. But sadly, I didn’t have those options when I met restraints the first time. It was an automatic response. By wrote. They followed their protocol. There was no talking me down from that ledge. no, no medicating me first. But I must admit I was pretty much batshit and did barricade myself into the bathroom. I crossed that line. I do wish I had never met restraints. Never experienced first hand the bite of those leather and felt cuffs. When I see them on the screen I FEEL THEM. I SMELL THEM. The little hairs on my arms stand up expectantly waiting for that brush with them. I cannot turn that off. It is like breathing. My body reacts. The act of strapping a person down against their will is a violation like no other. To say it is done for their own good is meaningless. In that moment, that second, in those screaming- bucking- cursing minutes, it is anything but good. It is terror. Those leather coils trapping ones flesh only further the panic and rage. This primal response to be free tears across your mind. But there is no freedom. There is only the welts as the felt rubs your skin raw. Only the hoarseness of your throat from screams unheard. They don’t give. That is their purpose. By holding tight till the panic ceases they create safety. But at what cost? I will never again see a restraint and not recoil. I doubt I could be bound and enjoy it, as I once did. I have felt the helplessness as it chases hard on the tails of frenzy and mayhem. The noise and chaos departing into silence and chill. My nakedness beneath those pieces of leather. As my racing mind finally gave up and gave in. To shiver, wet with urine, trapped. No sense of time or place as drugs cloud the mind. sleep pulls hard. Time spins on. There is no tether to when, where , why? why? Why did I end up here like this? When did I go from responsible college student to this insane person tied down. There are no answers, not within the grip of medications used to subdue. The fear only grows within that petri dish of confusion and stupor. Without waypoints or a compass it just becomes more terrifying. More sinister, more horrifying. I could not answer my questions. I could not figure out what went wrong, so fast and so hard. There was no guide in my lost hours spent strapped down in a stark white room. Nothing but my lost scrambled thoughts. I learned what it was to truly be alone and afraid. To lose control completely. not in the sense of behavior, but in terms of one’s ability to control their environment. To be able to wipe the snot and tears off my face, or to pull a sheet over my goosebumped flesh. I could do nothing but shiver and slide into and out of sleep. I could not sit up, or even shift myself much. I was tied there. Before that day I had never given any thought to the images of restraints in the movies. They just passed by unnoticed, unimportant. I never gave a thought to what it felt like to be that person strapped down and shrieking to be free. Not once. I can never be that naive person again. I cannot tame the thump of my heart in my chest unleashed by just the sight of restraints. I can never undo, or un live those days. They are carved deeply within my soul. I know, every cell in my body knows what that is. One can rattle on about PTSD, and the trauma of restraints. They can tell you all the good and bad they can do. From an intellectual standpoint I understand all of that. I do. But tell that to my heart. Tell that to my mind. Tell that to my soul. Ask them about the day they learned what it felt like to be stripped down to nothing. Absolute nothingness. Ask them what it felt like to watch someone take pleasure in tying another person down. How it felt when they walked out of the little white room and the door latch slid home with an echo. How it feels to have six people holding your limbs tight enough to leave bruises while another sticks a needle in you. How it feels to have your heart beating clear out of your chest until the drugs come calling and the haze descends. How the room tilts and all your effort is useless because your muscles just don’t even listen. It was in those moments that I came to be the person I am today. The one that can’t not react when Homeland depicts scenes of much the same happening to Carrie. Restraints changed me. They taught me so much. None of it good. I will never be free of the countless hours spent in their grip. It was my awakening to the terror and the reality of being a mental patient and it will forever haunt me.


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