Friday, July 15, 2011


i am a coward. maybe. 

in my room i have a wooden box full of things i do not want to have to look at but cannot let go of, for various reasons. things that scare me. a cubic foot of terror. 

inside the box there are things that remind me of the one intrinsic truth about myself: i am afraid to be alone. i am not uncomfortable with loneliness; i accept that i must be lonely sometimes in order to really know how to be connected with others. no, i am afraid of being alone because, for me, to be alone is to be myself, and i do not understand what that means yet.

if i knew then maybe, just maybe, i would understand.

i'm sick of being a coward simply because i say i am. so i reach into the box. i push my hand past various pictures and a pair of white sunglasses and couple of armbands from mesa vista and several loose pieces of paper, and i stop at a composition book. clutched in my hand, it feels alright, so i take it out and close the box. for now.

my name is scrawled on the front of the notebook. it was given to me upon an admission to the mesa vista intensive care unit. i decide to open it up; i run my thumb along the edge, landing on a page somewhere in the middle. i let the book fall open in my hands and look down. inside is a message from another inpatient:

"without joy or misery i give you hope"

i gladly accept this gift. i close the notebook and place it back in the terrible box and leave my room and live.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

in a world of my own

This morning I woke up and told myself I am a normal person. There is nothing wrong with me, I said firmly,  and out loud. In fact, I reasoned to the room, my affliction is that I am cursed with some sort of super-sanity.  Unrecognized by those who surround me, the ones who are actually painfully unstable, I am often made out to be the crazy one. Which is just untrue.

I probably would have believed myself, too, if I hadn't spent the entire day tucked into the ceiling watching my every move from above.

Depersonalization is one of my favorite symptoms. If taken in the right mindset, it can be fairly amusing, like playing a third-person video game, only with less control of the avatar. It's healthy to remove oneself from one's self occasionally. The important thing is to not get confused.

Because look:

I am watching myself look into a mirror. I am not looking at my reflection; I am looking at myself look at my reflection. So basically I am operating through an external frame of reference. Which leads me to the question, which "me" is really me, the observer or the physical body? And is there even a difference? Certainly there must be some distinction, because the body I know to be me is right there, living as if nothing is any different than when I was in there. And then there's me, disengaged from my physical tie to life, wondering what the hell is going on.

I've come to the conclusion that it doesn't really matter, either way. An overactive sense of self-awareness is   not so bad, right? And pondering these things is what makes people crazy, after all.   So I figure as long as I keep my separate selves in close proximity I can hold on to the delusion that I have some sort of control.

In my world I'm such a star I get to watch the movie of my own life. In real time.

Actually, I'm not a star; I am a fucking constellation.

Sunday, June 19, 2011

my future's so bright...


It has been a week of self-exploration. Honestly, I do not know what the result of all this will be, what the end looks like. I hate trying to stop and figure things out; I am too impatient for that. Anyway, maybe to know would be too limiting. And I have been on kind of a roll lately.

Things are feeling less like a mescaline trip gone wrong. I am reaching a level of clarity that surpasses anything I have previously known. That is not to say that the problem has ceased; I still dissociate. I have a feeling it will be a long time until I can stay in my own head completely. But what has been helping me is recognizing the advancements I make every day no matter how trivial, and not letting regressions discourage me. Sometimes we all slip, and that is okay.

Maybe my new found optimism is due to all the support I have been receiving from my family and friends. Maybe my confidence and self-assurance has increased as I have been actively applying the skills I have been taught in "real" situations now. Maybe something just finally clicked, and I can see that there really are infinite possibilities. 

I used to find it hard to accept the reality of my situation. I thought that if I wanted something badly enough it would be so, and thus wasted a lot of time thinking fantastically. But this is true, in some sense; things are what you make them. While I cannot will myself simply to be different, I can choose how I approach life. And if I choose to act with fierce hopefulness, not even I can stand in my own way. My future's so bright....

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


Wednesday. Yes, it's Wednesday, and yes, it will be for several more lifetimes. For several more Top 40 Hits reverberating through my neighbor's open window, at least. I can never escape the trappings of pop culture. 

I am exhausted. Throughout the past year I have had to explain myself so much it makes me sick. I do not want to think anymore. I just want to be able to feel, and I want that to be enough. At this point I can't tell if there are a million thoughts screaming at me, or none. I'm not sure if I am achingly miserable or blissfully content; either one could make sense right now. I just am, I suppose.

The problem is that there has been too much noise in my head lately. I have grown so tired of it that I've somehow managed to dissociate myself from it all. While this makes some sense, I still feel a bit confused and somewhat frustrated. I try to remember to live "in the moment", but recently every moment feels like an eternity. 

I am too awake to sleep. Too tired to dream.

When I was 10 one of my neighbors was growing habanero peppers in his window sill. They looked so beautiful. I knew they must be special, sitting in the sun, slowly turning  a brilliant orange. They looked so alive. Vibrant. I wanted one desperately, and begged my neighbor to let me taste one, just one bite. He eventually obliged, no doubt happily anticipating the moment it touched my lips and decimated my taste buds for a week. I still remember that bite, everything about it. I remember exactly how the piquancy felt, the shock and pain and heat, and I remember how grounded I was right then. I was thrust into simply feeling, being. Sensations.

I could attend cognitive therapy today and every day for the rest of my life until I am no more, spending countless hours analyzing my thoughts and trying to retrain patterns, but the fact is, no therapist can teach me how to feel something. Real, honest experiences are the only thing that will save me.