EDIT 27 Aug 2014 : Whew, this post really does not make much sense. I was in a bad place when I wrote it, I’m in a better place but I’m leaving it up to remind me not to go back to that dark place.
Ever had one of those days where things all fall apart at the same time?
Imagine you are woken up by a phone call from relatives telling you terrible news and at the same time you have to skip breakfast because there is literally nothing to eat in the house.
You head out and discover you have two flat tires and no spares, you run to catch the bus but miss it, resulting in you being late for work, where you find out you are not getting that promotion you were promised. Half way through the day your girlfriend decides she wants to break up, your son’s school and your land lord conspire together to increase fees and rent respectively. That company you invested money with just got shutdown for fraud, the owners having skipped town with your money and the cherry on the cake? Some asshole decides to run over your dog.
I had one of those days today.
I got so angry, and stressed and frustrated that I got this burning sensation in my chest that just kept progressively getting worst with each passing event. By lunch time I was no longer able to function. Every sentence that came out of my mouth had to be punctuated with a swear word or it didn’t feel right. I just wanted to punch someone, to cause untold physical pain, to anyone.
I felt like I was deep in a tunnel and couldn’t see any way out. like I was being buried alive under so much shit. That burning sensation in my chest just kept growing, crossing over from being uncomfortable to being painful till it felt like it was about to burst.
At the some point my brain just stopped. I couldn’t go on anymore, I needed an out so I just slammed shut my laptop, turned off my phone and just left. I honestly don’t know where I was going but I just knew I needed to go. I couldn’t give you a coherent account of that walk to save my life, however I can say is I when I calmed down and started thinking again I was 15km (give or take a kilometer) away from where I started.
On the walk back I started to see things more philosophically, it’s funny the amount of clichés you say to yourself to try make sense of things happening around you. I went through a bunch of them:
- Shit happens
- What doesn’t kill you makes you stranger
- Life goes on
- There are no problems only challenges
I found one that calmed me down the most and have been repeating it ever since.
I am not responsible for all the bad that’s happened to me today but I AM ME. I AM Strength, I AM Peace, I AM Love, I AM Power, I AM Calm, I AM Health, I AM who I AM and I WILL go on.
I’m not actually sure I make sense at the moment, but I make sense to me. I am glad I am who I am because if I was someone else I might have snapped and killed myself.
The so-called ‘psychotically depressed’ person who tries to kill herself doesn’t do so out of quote ‘hopelessness’ or any abstract conviction that life’s assets and debits do not square. And surely not because death seems suddenly appealing. The person in whom Its invisible agony reaches a certain unendurable level will kill herself the same way a trapped person will eventually jump from the window of a burning high-rise. Make no mistake about people who leap from burning windows. Their terror of falling from a great height is still just as great as it would be for you or me standing speculatively at the same window just checking out the view; i.e. the fear of falling remains a constant. The variable here is the other terror, the fire’s flames: when the flames get close enough, falling to death becomes the slightly less terrible of two terrors. It’s not desiring the fall; it’s terror of the flames. And yet nobody down on the sidewalk, looking up and yelling ‘Don’t!’ and ‘Hang on!’, can understand the jump. Not really. You’d have to have personally been trapped and felt flames to really understand a terror way beyond falling.
I can never understand fully another’s pain because I am not in their shoes nor have I gone through what they have hence it is not my place to make judgment on their actions. The only thing I understand fully is my pain, and after today I have realized that I can endure.
My pain is part of who I am. I am who I am, I don’t know what happens next but I am ready to face it.