Anxiety

Ever have one of those days where you listen to a song – on the radio, your favorite playlist, a CD, or what have you – and the words just feel like they’re about you? I’ve been having those a lot lately. There are so many song lyrics that I can think of that practically hit the nail on the head lately, and even though it feels that way, it also feels like a very teenager-y thing to think about. I guess that makes sense, though; My last attempt at a relationship was when I was a teenager, and I don’t think I’ve really progressed that far past that. I haven’t had any reason to, really, because I’ve either never had the courage to try to tell another woman that I Was interested or never gotten more than a few words out of my mouth before being shot down until last year. So I guess I haven’t really had the opportunity to progress. In a lot of ways, I still am that teenager, scared and unsure of myself, especially right now.

I don’t know about you, but me, I have a voice in my head – well, not so much a voice as a nagging sensation telling me that I’m not good enough, that I’ll never be loved, that I’ll never be able to give a woman what they might be looking for in a relationship. For the most part, I can tune that feeling out, especially when I feel like things are going well. But right now, after having lost not only someone I loved but all contact with her, that voice has been singing out loud and proud. It’s there when I wake up, and it’s there when I go to sleep; sometimes it keeps me up an extra hour or two just so it can make sure that I hear all about how it was right, that I am hopeless, that no woman will ever want me, that my best efforts will be seen as not supportive enough or, worse, too needy, into an area that borders on mental or emotional abuse. It’s there, and I don’t know how to make it stop, because somewhere inside of me, I wonder if it isn’t right.

I wish I knew how to stop letting this get to me. I wish there was just something I could do, or say, to convince myself that as painful as this is – to lose both a close friend and someone I love, to have them never want to speak to me again – that the pain is just temporary. I don’t want to see this as a pattern – two failed attempts at relationships, both of which feel like they reached into me, pulled out my heart, and made like Mola Ram. Technically, I suppose I’d need a third for a pattern; two is really just a coincidence, unhappy and unpleasant though it may be. But I also don’t know what to do to move forward. I can never tell if a woman is attracted to me, or even likes me, unless she practically hits me over the head, and right now, I don’t think that even if a woman found anything about me attractive, that I’d be in any shape to do anything about it.

So, as you might have expected from the way this post started out, lyrics:

I don’t fear none of my enemies
And I don’t fear bullets from Uzis
I’ve been dealing with something that’s worse than these
That’ll make you fall to your knees and that’s
The anxiety the sane and the insane rivalry
Paranoia’s brought me to my knees
Lord please please please
Take away my anxiety

Advertisements

Unhappy Holidays

The last two weeks have been two of the most miserable I can remember.

It’s not just losing a friend, someone I loved. That is a big part of it, yes, but not all. It’s the little things around our relationship, the everyday bits and pieces that are a constant reminder. Every time things seem to start healing, something reopens the wound; whether it’s the theme song to Frozen, which I watched with her, and which now plays every day at my workplace; the air freshener scent that was her favorite and pervades my apartment; the favorite movie that I saw first with her. There are lots of little things that make it hard to keep her from my mind. And I can’t, even in this season of peace and love, comfort and joy, even wish her a Merry Christmas.

It doesn’t help that I still have faith in her as a person, and believe that she will, eventually, reach her goals for wellness, and find a better, happier life. I don’t hate her, and I’m not angry at her; far from it. I just don’t know that our ideas of friendship can mesh without better, more honest communication, and right now there isn’t any. I don’t know if friendship would even be good for either of us, but right now I could use more friends.

You see, I just found out a few days ago that one of my closest friends and greatest supports here in Houston is going to be leaving in a month or so. I know she’s been miserable here for a long time; she never wanted to be here, and she was forced to leave her whole previous life behind. And while she values my friendship, she can’t seem to move forward here, and I don’t want to watch her just spin her metaphorical tires and drive herself into further misery just to stay here. I’d much rather know that she has a chance at finding the life she wants back in the place she considers home, even if that means she won’t be able to come hang out at odd hours of the night, or provide energy drinks and comfort when I’m in one of my bleakest moments. I know we’ll still be in touch, but it won’t be the same.

So with the loss of Alice earlier this year, and then a friend who showed me a part of the emotional spectrum I had thought lost to me, and the impending loss (at least in a physical proximity sense) of another close friend and strong support, I’m left wondering what I can do to shore up my support system here.

This is supposed to be a season of hope and miracles, but right now I don’t feel like I have much of either. And while I am confident I will make it through this, I also know that with each loss it will take longer and hurt more.

So while I look forward to spending a day or two next week with my parents, sister, and new niece, I can’t say that these holidays are looking very merry and bright. And, being in Texas, I doubt they’ll even be white.

I hope that all of you who read this look at your own lives, and realize what you have that you value and cherish, whatever or whoever it may be. Because more than any material possession, the people you care about, and who care about you, are the true gifts of the season, and recognizing that is the only bright spot in my holidays this year.

Forlorn

It’s been a while since my last update, and that has largely been because the last week or so has been very traumatic for me. I lost a very close friend on Sunday; she didn’t die, but she will no longer have anything to do with me. And that has been, and is still, something terrible. I feel worse than I did when Alice died; not to say that Alice’s loss wasn’t traumatic and painful, because it was. But here I know there is some part of this that is my fault, even if not all of it is. And I know my friend is still there, and as much as I want to reach out, I know I shouldn’t. I don’t think she would want to have any contact with me, and right now I don’t know that it would do either of us any good. But still, there is now a hole in my life where she was; someone I used to talk with, and share my life with, and try to help and support, as I hoped she did for me, is gone.

For most of the last week, I’ve just been numb from the shock of it all. I knew I should feel terrible, but I just couldn’t make myself feel much of anything. Today is the first day that the grief really hit me, and the waterworks have been flowing freely much of the day. I think I’m close to dry for the day now, so I can see clearly enough to write this, but it’s just a lot of pain to deal with; it’s raw and emotional, and I just had so much invested in our friendship that it’s like a huge part of my life was just cut away. I don’t know that I even really have words to describe how it feels, though I imagine many of us have had to deal with this sort of pain before. I am just terribly sad and hurt, like I’ve lost a limb, or like something was cut out of me.

She was just someone who I cared deeply about, and who was very important to me. I thought we’d formed a close bond in our time together. I knew her as a caring, intelligent, funny, and strong woman, and I hope that she continues to be. I know she isn’t gone, but I don’t think that even if we reconcile that things will be the same. I don’t even know if reconciliation is a very good idea. I miss my friend, though. The world doesn’t seem as bright or hopeful without her as a part of my life. I don’t feel as safe; I’ve taken to deadbolting my door again, though I hadn’t done so in months.

I wish her well for the future; I don’t think I’ll ever be angry with her. It wasn’t a betrayal, just an inability to…hell, I don’t even know. We couldn’t make things work.

I’m not looking for advice on how to deal with this; I think I’ve had plenty. If you feel like commiserating, then do so, by all means. But I’m not really looking for sympathy, either; just trying to figure out a way to give a voice to my feelings, however ill-suited this medium may be for them.

Powerless

There have been a lot of news stories lately that have made me feel powerless, like there is no protection for people even – perhaps especially – from those who have been given the job of protecting those who can’t protect themselves. The Ferguson, MO case of Michael Brown is perhaps the one closest to me, since I only recently moved from St. Louis, and a number of people who I know and care about are still in the area and may be affected by this case and all the fallout. But there are more – the case of Eric Garner in New York; the case of Tamir Rice in Cleveland; the case of Rosendo Gino Rodriquez in Midland, Texas.  Those are just the ones I’ve read about recently; there are probably more. These things scare me, because the people who are committing the acts of violence here are supposed to protect the people they kill. Personally, as a mentally ill person, the last story, of Rosendo Rodriquez, scares me the most – that could easily have been me.

When I last tried to kill myself – in January of last year – my family thought, though erroneously, that I was staying with some friends in another city. So when they read the note I had sent, they called the police and had police sent to the house where my friends live. If the police in that case had been jumpier, or thought I was a danger, and had assumed danger to themselves that was not in evidence, they could easily have stormed into the house of my friends and injured them – and I wasn’t even there. They could easily have done that when I was found, hallucinating, in St. Louis.

Things like this make me feel a very profound sense of fear and despair. How can we be safe if the people whose job it is to protect us are apparently so jumpy that even the smallest of things can set us on the path to injury or worse? And worse, how can we feel safe if these same people can cause injury to us and then suffer no consequences? If anything, their job is so important that they should be more accountable to the law, not less. Otherwise, they lose the trust of the people they protect – and then they become less protectors, and more jailers.

I know there are good people doing their jobs as protectors. I know that they may very well be in the majority. But unless they speak out against those who aren’t taking this duty they have assumed seriously – those who are injuring the very people they have sworn to protect – then how can they expect us to trust them? Why should we, if their loyalty to those who happen to wear the same uniform – even as they degrade and desecrate that same uniform – is greater than to those they have sworn oaths to protect?

There’s always hope, but I don’t have a great deal of it right now.