A confession from a phantom

 So, brace yourselves I have to tell you something. It’s important. I… lied. I’m a liar. I haven’t been honest with you or myself for a long time. Since the beginning, I think. 

 The truth is… is I don’t want to get better. I don’t want to be strong. I don’t want your support. I know this sounds bad. I’m ranting, I just need reassuring, right? This is the truth: I want to be isolated, to be hungry, sickly and frail. I want this pain to kill me. Sorry, I know you don’t want to hear this. I don’t want you to either but I can’t make excuses anymore. I’m tired. 

 When I say I would like to get out more, I’m lying. When I say I want to get healthy, I’m lying again. When I tell you that it’ll be fine and there’s nothing to worry about. It’s all lies. I think, at the start, I went along with it because I didn’t want to upset you. Maybe if I pretended long enough I could change for real. But I have only given the impression of change and simply hidden the facts. The fact that I am weak and cowardly; I am selfish and proud of that. I am proud of myself when I feel pangs of hunger and get faint. When I get little sleep and can’t even muster the energy to wash. When I’m all alone for days and days, I’m glad. Because this is what I deserve. 

 Now I know you want to argue otherwise; no one deserves what I put myself through. But you don’t have to be polite. No, you shouldn’t apologise for not knowing. You can’t know if I don’t tell you: exactly.

 Remember, I want this, to hurt. I’m not going to confide in you and ask for help. I don’t want help. So don’t feel bad, okay? See it like natural selection: ‘Survival of the Fittest’. The weak get left behind, you know? Yeah, morally that doesn’t sit well with you and I know we could delve into opposing theories that undermine my thinking but I’ve digressed enough. 

 But if I had been honest in the beginning, would you still be here asking how I feel today or whether I’ve eaten? 

You can’t help someone who can’t help themselves. That’s what I’ve heard. 
 Anyway, I’m going to get back to sitting in front of the tele all day and if you ask how I’m doing tomorrow, I can’t promise that I won’t lie when I answer.

“Oh hi. I love your hair, what’s your secret?”

 “Male-pattern baldness and a sprinkle of stress.”

“Oh hahaha…”

Your day to day may seem uneventful. Maybe even boring. Weeks, months go by and nothing happens. For the most part you’re ok, keeping your demons at bay with this strictly simplistic lifestyle.

But then your mum’s victim to an attempted burglary. Your brother is moving away because he can’t find work. You find out your grandpa is on his last legs after years of fighting cancer. Your dad is ill with worry and stress as well as battling daily with depression.

You feel like you should help, like you are supposed to help. But what can you do?

Cure cancer? Stop crime? Create job opportunities?

So, you’re not a superhero.

But you are a pretty good listener.

What I remember. Step four: Running from the Facts

I didn’t want to wake up, I didn’t want to confront anyone or do anything so I stayed in bed once I had returned and hid in the sheets. Though no one dared approach me anyway. I had been outcast by my family. Quarantined and stifling in the freezing atmosphere of the cold shoulder, I couldn’t think. I couldn’t breathe.
Feeling emotionally wrought, I begged my siblings for understanding. I needed attention support but they had resolved to keep out of it, in effect pretending that I wasn’t there at all. I couldn’t bare being invisible any longer so I chose to run again but this time a little further than down the road to the local.

I hastily packed a bag of clean pants and toiletries and headed to the train station. In the midst of purchasing a one way ticket to anywhere I got a call from an old friend. She persuaded me to stay with her for now, it had been a while since I had visited.
The train wasn’t due for a while and I had been ignoring a barrage of calls from my family; I took this time check their messages on my voicemail.
“Where are you?”
“What the fuck do think you’re doing?”
“You’re not running away to kill yourself!”
“You better be in this house in the next ten minutes or I’m calling the police!”

Wish I hadn’t heard all that… Oh no. I hold back the shiver of panic, now more determined to get the hell out of here and away from them.

The train was delayed (what a surprise) and I watched anxiously as the expected time on the platform display got later and later. My phone rang constantly, I imagined with more threats. They’re going to find me if this train doesn’t show up soon As I took my eyes off the clock to look over the platform I thought I saw him, my step dad. Wow paranoid, much I put my hood up just in case. No, There he was! I could hear him approaching. My hands started to tremble. Don’t let him intimidate you, please… calm down I pretend not to notice and personify a disposition of aloofness.

“There she is,” his voice was closing in, I still hadn’t looked up; purely relying on my hearing to determine their distance.
“Excuse me?” Another voice, followed by the crackle of her radio. A copper. As I looked in her direction I realized the surrounding crowd of curious onlookers were also awaiting my response. “Yes, can I help you? I’m sorry but my train is due to arrive and I can’t miss it.” nailed it! My step dad was infuriated by my distant attitude, he was exclaiming that I can’t get on any train, that I was a risk to myself and others. although this was true But I was clearly showing no such evidence to his claims. The officer looked me up and down and I could see her disbelief. I was exuding a confidence that couldn’t be fought. He wasn’t going to win this one; I was in control.
The train scuttled along the line and with a wave I hopped on it. My step dad was still arguing his case as I departed. Phew, I made it. My mask could come off. As it did I became extremely aware of the whole coach’s gaze and gossiping whispers. I sat at the nearest available table and the seats around me were clearly avoided by other passengers; regardless of the rush hour and delays. So embarrassing!
As I sank further into my seat and sighed, “there’s no turning back now”. The adrenaline was still rushing from the confrontation, I was pleased with my performance but it left me questioning myself and my identity all the more. Is it all an act?
I brush it off and call my friend to let her know I’m on my way and to get the shot glasses out, I’m celebrating freedom! Fuck sobriety!

The weeks went by and before I knew it it was Christmas eve. I hadn’t missed a family Christmas yet but as far as I could tell they would be better off without me. I was completely lost in a void of irrational thinking, I couldn’t make sense of anything so I simply stopped trying. I felt the best way do this was to be inebriated Bring on the booze!
That night I had gone out alone, on the hunt for drama I guess. And that is just what I got. A guy was following me back to the house and I had to run to escape. (I’m a stealthy drunk ninja)
It was five in the morning as I climbed through the window because I had dropped the keys to the door. They were easily found on the front step when light broke that morning. (Ninja skills clearly don’t include night vision)
I slept the holidays away, tarnishing what tradition there once was. The following months got worse, I was still alive (surprisingly) but I was constantly getting into trouble (usually because of my big mouth) and I had awoken to a few too many strange faces, which was my least favourite part of the whole “alcoholic lifestyle” I had fallen into.
I became more paranoid and fearful of the “what ifs” created by the drunken blackouts and was on edge, jumping at every misheard murmur from the shadows, just out of sight. Dark feelings stirred rabidly with every shot of the strong stuff. Nowhere was safe.
Tbc

Finding my orbit and failing.

When I can’t deal with something I shut down; I avoid the problem. It has been a few months since I have posted anything but I started writing the last chapter of What I Remember in early September and this chapter of my life was the pinnacle of my break down. This time I asked for help and I meant it.
Recounting these events put me in a vulnerable place, I was scared that I was going to crack up again. And I have continued to be scared of this seemingly inevitable meltdown because I just don’t feel like I can truly move forward. I still write, although not frequently. I should be proud of the little progress I have made but I’m not. I’m debilitated by the fact that I don’t trust myself with my emotions because when I do allow myself to feel, I’m overwhelmed, I lose control.
So for now I’m boring safe, wandering aimlessly.
Hopefully I can post more soon

Exploring the Galaxy (going beyond the garden fence)

I am an adventurer at heart but have a debilitating fear of everything unfamiliar.
I try to get out of the confines of my flat a few times a week and when I do leave, I can’t wait to get back to my safe space in front of the tv.
But I want to travel, I want to see the sights and walk on foreign turf. Instead I’m stagnating, sheltered and lonely, only able to dream of soaring the skies beyond the window’s frame.

I want to escape from these boundaries that I have created. Is it just the fear of the unknown that holds me back? Do I take the risk; step over the threshold, jump the fence? Is the grass going to be greener on the other side?

Probably not… I’ll just stay here, ooh my favourite show is about to start

What I remember. Step three: T’was the Night.

The weeks after I had crash-landed back to Earth were dull. I spent all of my time at the local day hospital for a course of recovery treatment. I didn’t want to be there but I didn’t want to be anywhere else either so I just showed up and chain smoked until they told me my time was up. Nothing really came of it. I did come into contact with all walks of people though, who were interesting but really frightened me too.
Most of these people were middle aged, most of them had long term conditions, most of them were still lost and confused. But most of them also had this hope. They were still fighting for a better quality of life, still determined to get the best of it. A lot of them, I noticed, found this in their relationships, their families.
This shit didn’t reassure me however. I feel so selfish for putting my family through what I do. I’m ruining their lives because I’m an emotionally aggressive wreck.
My only hope is for them to hate me enough to not feel responsible for my inevitable suicide.

None of them dared come near me after the incident and barely took notice of me. It was like I was carrying something contagious and eye contact would pass it on. This isolation kept me in a dark place, the dark was unsettled and the creepy shit was crawling all over me. It hurt; I viewed everything through a kaleidoscopic blur. I needed a drink. I had abstained whilst in treatment but it was time to quiet the monsters.
Off I went to the local pub…
I started with red wine, a bottle of course, I hadn’t eaten so I got hammered, fast. Between hiccups I had a shot of sambuca and all I remember next is being picked up, from a puddle of vomit, on the street by the police. I could feel the crowds of eyes staring at the spectacle. Even in my stupor, I felt humiliated.
So anyway they took me away to be assessed by which point I had sobered up enough to stand upright without aid. The Psychs were mean, they didn’t hear me out and were pushing me into a taxi back to my parents. Fuck that was my thought as I ran.
I had no fucking clue where I was and through tears and the glow of sunrise I sprinted, jumped walls and dodged cars. Every time I blinked I felt I could pass out but I was intent on escaping. Fear booming the adrenaline around inside me , I was vibrating like I was right next to the speakers at a festival.

I was coming to a few dead ends and realized my phone and cigarettes were currently been driven to my parents house.
Suddenly I became aware of how lost and confused I was. Two people were coming up the street towards me (it had been super quiet up to this point) and I begged for a cig. As I thanked them I was friendly but the looks on their faces, as they hurried away from me, perturbed me even more. I probably looked a bedraggled mess but in all the drama I hadn’t had the time to care about the puke I was caked in.
I slowed to a walk and concentrated on each inhale of the cigarette, savouring them. Rational thought followed and I decided to figure out where I was and where I was going to go. Maybe I could find a hostel or shelter. And I need another cig.

I must have been walking for more than an hour – I’m guessing, as I hadn’t been aware of the time since yesterday afternoon and that seemed like days ago – I was tiring, my legs ached with every step I took. With the physical drain came the emotional one and I felt a surge of desperation. I asked around for shelter with no luck and I was still miles away from my parents. But I had to cave; I had to go back there. Just for a few hours I told myself. You need a plan.

So with this new resolution I walked into the nearest building which happened to be a hotel. I drifted across the foyer, instantly catching the attention of the desk clerk. I told him what had gone on, sort of and he explained he was a trained social worker and with great concern for me, contacted my parents.
I sank into a chair by the Christmas tree, entranced by the glimmering fairy lights and I waited. I was so sad, so deeply sad and there wasn’t anything I could do to make it go away. I was defeated.
A taxi arrived to pick me up, prepaid. (my parents didn’t want to see me) I didn’t run from it this time but got in, after giving a nod to the hotel guy.
What’s going to happen now?
I’m so scared

Tbc.

Making a house a cage

I have not wanted to write anything this past few weeks. With the move to a new place and learning to live on my own again, I haven’t had the head space to even construct a sentence never mind a whole post but I want to try and share my experiences.
I’ve been here a couple of weeks and had a friend staying with me for the duration so for the most part I have been distracted. Although it has been stressful now she’s gone I have really driven myself nuts with paranoia, I hate the thought of being a bad neighbour. I’m going to be robbed. I’m too frightened to answer my, door, my phone. But I know it’s nonsense I have nothing to worry about, but I do. But it’s nothing really but I am an easy target, I wish I was stronger but I’m not.
Anyway so that’s happening and it might be like this for a while but it’ll pass, right?

image

I’m going to see Inside Out today by myself because fuck, who needs the company. It will hopefully calm my nerves and create some happy thoughts. 

Watch “Inside Out Trailer 2 UK – Official Disney Pixar | HD” on YouTube
https://youtu.be/_MC3XuMvsDI