Saturday, February 14, 2015

Oh, the Webs We Weave

On my good days, I can be proactive about my bad days. This weekend, for myself, I've taken my heart to the hills. Inside the hills, I have (at least) some sense of safety, because the contour of the land calmly directs the movement of my eyes. It also comforts my heart, because it gives me the chance to experience what happens when a collision doesn't vaporize everything. Uplift is courageous. Mountains are brave. They change, but they rise. There is erosion, undoubtedly, but there must be contrast in order to recognize the significance of anything.

When I feel safe like this, I can take care of business. I can situate my life just a little bit. I am painfully aware of and unable to repair the deficiencies in my brain chemistry, but I can do small things. I can force my brain through a traumatic pulse in order to, in a sense, reset things. I can awaken my hypothalamus and my amygdala and my pituitary gland; I can frighten and stimulate. I can just go get another tattoo. 

Close my eyes, smile, and let my brain buzz with the needle. It's interesting. The sequence of my life is interesting. I learned about the neurobiology of trauma from a TED talk given by Dr. Rebecca Campbell. Three months later, I randomly attended a Unitarian church in East Lansing with a friend, only to find that I was standing right in front of Dr. Campbell and had the opportunity to properly thank her. Now, I feel like I can manipulate my brain in small ways while it continues to work behind my back, or I suppose, above it.

It is no secret that I internalize my trauma, and that it is too heavy for me right now. It is also very obvious that I adopt everyone else's trauma, because it feels better to share the load even if it makes things heavier. I acknowledge these things. I will also note that my deep awareness of our trauma is likely turning out to be extremely unhealthy for me right now. However, I am more afraid of ignoring our stories, because that is the root of my wound. It's what stings the most. For me, at least, the events themselves were easier to survive and forgive than the events that followed. It is why people wonder if I ever have victory (I do). It is why I still drag my baggage around with me ten years later. I won't ignore it. Ignoring it is betrayal of self. Ignoring my trauma is ignoring my need; my need to feel safe, and my need to be heard and believed and validated and taken care of and loved, loudly loved, nonetheless.

So, I understand your frustration, outsiders and insiders alike. I am also frustrated. It's unbearable to carry my own story only to find that I've taken on the stories of everyone else as well. It's even worse to realize that, while I once believed that things would get better and for a time things did, even my ancient story can still take sharp turns for the worse. And I can't do any more sharp turns for the worse right now. I won't survive another one. Not when the joke is on me. It's cruel, and it seems like further evidence that I've overstayed my welcome in this life.

And I have fucked up. I didn't realize it until now, but I have royally fucked up and I'm so sorry because I never meant to. I didn't see it coming. I have spun myself an impossible web. Several months ago, I was talking with a friend about the webs she had been spinning in her life, but she was building a network for the betterment of everyone; I have spun myself into a corner. I am the spider and I am the fly. I've trapped myself with carbon silk thread that, regardless of elasticity, is stronger than steel and I am weak. 

Scratch that, I'm not a fly. I'm a moth. A Gypsy Moth. A gypsy that has spun her own chains, how nice, because I realize now that I can't get better if I continue to be the version of myself that is a gypsy. Or, if I continue to be myself.

It really looks like I'm running, doesn't it? I am. But it's not because I'm scared. It's because I'm terrified of being anything other than a nomad right now. I'm terrified of stagnation, but I've trapped myself. I'm also terrified of being unreliable. I've made commitments and I must travel to the locations that those commitments require. It's as simple as that, isn't it?

I may only have one viable option. No, I have no viable options, but I may only have one close-enough option. And close enough has never been good enough, and that sentence to settling terrifies me even more. The fact remains that in order to get the care that I evidently require, I will have to stay in one place for a while. I don't want to keep feeling this way, but I don't want to kill the part of me that wanders. 

Because that will kill the rest of me.

Thursday, February 05, 2015

Lists, Etc.

I can only recall this one existence. I have not been able to determine whether or not some morsel of me has existed before this life, not that it really matters, but all that means is that I can't think largely enough for the things I'm trying to comprehend.

Like, what do I know about what happens after I abandon this life? Do I stop existing or do I keep on going? Let's assume for the sake of argument that I just dissolve. That's what I want right now, anyway, so I'm going to indulge that desire. 

There I go, fizzling out, dissolved.

Now that I'm gone, let's make a list of the things that I could do in the moment before I dissolved, and I can't after:

1. Eat Nutella
2. Hug people and things and dogs and myself
3. Drive
4. Sing
5. Learn

...and I really don't care about anything else.

I've shoved myself into a corner of a room that isn't mine but that I'm borrowing, completed by a giant wall decal of Mickey Mouse with hands held high, reminding me to have a wonderful day at work because I live just a couple hours from the Happiest Place on Earth, irony notwithstanding. I'm afraid that I take up too much space, or that 24 years of uninvited existence are catching up with me, or that I'm falling into the black dots.

I feel spent. Evidently, I'm good enough to work all day at jobs that I like, but I'm unworthy of receiving help for the things that I don't like. Unsure about what's happening. Questioning my impulsivity. Wondering each day if that sunset will be my last, tears escaping because maybe I won't ever see my family or friends ever again, because today is the day that I might go? 

But people want me to stay. I can't understand why. But because of that, I probably will.

With the same breath, though, I can't make any promises. And I can't promise that I'll keep the promises I've already made, foolishly. 

List of foolish promises I've made:
1. I'll get help
2. I'll get better
3. Everything will be fine

Here's the thing. I made those promises in order for them to serve as a cushion between reality and the delicate heads of the people I love, not because they're promises that will be met. The truth is, these promises are largely independent of my efforts. I've been told that I am not an island. And since that seems to be the truth, I can't do any of this by myself, nor can I do this my way. It all depends on the availability of help. If the resources do not exist, then they will not be provided; if the advocacy is not available, then it will not be given.

It won't. And once again, dears, the joke is on me and my ridiculous tendency to hope for better. Those bits of hope long dissolved, and those tiny victories turned lies, weigh heavy on me larger than the sum of their parts. It's unphysical, and as such, I cannot solve it.

That is why my existence is unexplainable and irreparable. And that is why there is absolutely nothing that any of you can do. 

So stop trying. I've won some, but it's more than likely that I'll lose this one. And if I do survive, I'm not sure what happens next.

But then again, heading for the hills might be the only thing that can save me, or ever will.