The dancers take the floor,
only, I am unprepared for this.
The opening strains of the orchestra
They are playing the sound my heart
made when it shattered,
The crashing cymbals, a long low note descending into darkness.
Why am I here? I don’t want to go through this anymore.
This poem was inspired by Sabrina Benaim’s “Explaining My Depression to My Mother.” all I had to do was to leave the car, but my hands froze,and my heart beat faster and fasteruntil terror rose above melike a boat facing a threatening wave until the wave capsized the boat,and my breath stuck in my chest […]
via Social Anxiety — An Alien at Sea
Sometimes it’s just easier not to share things with people who are committed to misunderstanding you. I read a quote once that read, “I stopped explaining myself when I realized people only understand from their level of perception.”
One of the most bizarre experiences I had dealing with depression is when I had to explain to a close acquaintance of mine why I was unable to attend an event with her one evening. I told her my monsters were incredibly fierce that day and I didn’t have it in me to be brave and face anyone else. Her response was, “Oh man, you’re still depressed?!”
How do you explain brokenness to someone who has never experienced it for themselves? It’s like trying to explain the color blue to someone who has been blind all their life. Inevitably, there comes a point where you just stop trying to make people understand.
Depression will often make you believe that you want to die, when what you are really craving is to feel alive. There have been so many times over the years that I desperately wanted to put an end to my misery and I mistakenly thought that looked very much like suicide. I couldn’t find my way out of the darkness and pain I had fallen into—yet my overwhelming desire to end it all was a response to my inability to obtain life and joy from everything that used to bring me fulfillment.
I would gaze in bewilderment at the people around me, going about their everyday lives, and I would scream at them internally, “Don’t you feel it?! Don’t you feel the disaster of my existence, the utter annihilation of my very soul? How can you not stop and stare in shock and horror at the destruction of everything I once was?” I was bleeding out my very essence into the universe and yet no one had the slightest clue. They blithely kept on living while my life had come to a sudden and unexpected halt.
Being on the outside looking in engraved some of the most brutal lessons into my shattered soul. Mainly, how important it is to notice the people around you. Not just their outward appearance or the expressions painted on their face—but to really see the person underneath. Being forced to a complete stop in a world that constantly rushes forward at the speed of light showed me how often I would trample over people in my climb to the top—never once noticing or even caring if my actions hurt someone in my rush.
Learning the simple act of kindness came with a terribly steep cost and one I am loathe to ever have to learn again. But unexpectedly, I was also left with invaluable gifts that could not have been obtained in any other way than making my way through that darkness.
It tastes of the river.
Bones rattling in the empty darkness
Echo in the stillness of her ribcage.
Restless; you stare into the stormy night,
Imagine bodies falling from bridges.
A light footfall and the sound of indigo
Blend into the subway. It spills its secrets
To the dark tunnels
As women rush by
Exposing wrists–haggard and drawn
As the worn grey scent of money.
You move your fingers over her spine
And think of lightning.
You frighten me.
When you ask me for things like friendship,
a night on the town.
An invitation thrown carelessly,
like a pebble in the water,
as you walk away without a care in the world.
As you walk away without realizing
that I am made of glass
and a misplaced throw may shatter this perfect illusion
of my reality.
I tighten my grip as anxiety roars to life
and settles on my shoulders with its familiar cold embrace.
“I’ll be there,” I whisper
Because I’d hate to disappoint you with my silence,
my mysterious disappearances.
But I breathe in and swallow my fear
because even a broken clock
tells the correct time every once in a while.
I’ve finally stopped being incredibly envious of other peoples lives. No, not even that, it goes deeper than that. It’s as if the ability to care so desperately has been plucked out by its very roots and I’m left with this beautiful paradox of looking into the window of a life that boasts everything that I do not have, and I feel incredible warmth and joy for that life.
Without the slightest hint of envy.
Even though I crave all of that which I am gazing upon and I am still on the outside looking in.
It fills my heart with joy to realize that another persons happiness and well-being are not the cause of my bitter envy and urge to compete. To want even better than that. To always have the upper hand. The last word. The last laugh.
Another’s joy fills me with joy.
This catches me by surprise.
I am content to sit back and to sink into the wonderful knowledge that soon my turn will come as well, soon my heart will be full to bursting and I will never have to compete with anyone ever again. Not even myself. And believing this means already enjoying the fullness that flows into my heart and spills out into my soul.