Have you read this story? If so, I feel like the thing on the easy chair.
Every time in my life that I think I have plumbed the depths of my own capacity for foul moods, I am mistaken. Ever new lows can be found. This February has certainly been one of those. Well, January and February both. Well, December was pretty miserable as well.
December is always a specific kind of misery though, so I don’t know if that counts. The misery of December is the you-don’t-have-a-family, you’re-doing-your-life-wrong, no-one-will-ever-love-you kind of misery. And that’s caused by the holidays and everyone else’s joyful HOORAH FEEL THE LOVE attitudes. For people who ain’t never felt the love, and ain’t never gonna feel the love of family holidays, December is a trial.
January usually perks up though. Holidays over, quiet times in the house, people stop expecting other people to be happy, I feel as if my life is acceptable not only to me, but also acceptable in relation to the lives of the people around me, to whom I cannot help but compare myself. Not this January though. The weather of January 2014 robbed any sense of normalcy or comfort from nesting—now it wasn’t nesting, it was being trapped. Now it was not being able to get to the store, now it was being expected to get to work on sheets of ice while wearing leg braces and fearing for one’s spinal column integrity. There was no happiness to be found there. February has brought even less relief. February, that most miserable of months, that month which brings me only accidents and surgeries and illness and infirmity, it showed up as expected with a slushy gray grunt of acknowledgement, then settled onto my couch and has not moved since.
It has truly been a horror. Trapped in the house, hobbled, anticipating my own surgery, my brother in the hospital, my mother in the hospital with him, my everyday work life a series of never-ending monotonous indignities, there has been no single bright spot in my worldview. You know I am miserable anyway, but the chronically displeased and unhappy, cunty, dead-eyed attitude I’ve adopted in the last few weeks is unattractive even to me. And I can’t help it. I mean, I am TAKING THE MEDS, PEOPLE. THE MEDS AIN’T HELPING.
I don’t think there ARE any meds that can help with this shit. It’s just a matter of me waiting for it to pass. And please baby Jesus let it pass soon. I know I have reason to be miserable. EVERYONE is miserable here lately. It’s a long, miserable winter that’s grated everyone’s nerves, and I am not immune to that, plus I’ve got a mother whose already flaky psyche is slowly disintegrating before my eyes, while she vehemently denies it. She is SO HAPPY you guys. She is DOING JUST WHAT SHE WANTS TO BE DOING. She calls me every day to update me on my brother’s white blood cell counts, his hours of wakeitude during the day, every mis-heard and misunderstood utterance of every doctor or nurse who comes in the room. She calls me crying, she calls me laughing hysterically. She whispers about bowel movements and sends me running errands for things my brother needs.
I grit my teeth and try not to think how he’d let me flounder in my own feces in the gutter if the positions were reversed. I try not to remember the times she’s left me lying in a hospital bed so she could get home. When she didn’t want to leave my brother for too long last week because “it’s scary to be alone in the hospital.” I managed not to say “I remember.”
Why do I do these things? I am not religious, I don’t think I will go to heaven because I am being kind. I don’t believe in karma, I don’t think that being nice to her will ever convince her to be nice to me.
Why do I swallow the words I want to say? Perhaps because they would not be healing words, not for either of us. Perhaps because there is no point in addressing things that will never change. Perhaps I have just decided to do what I can, when I can, because to me that’s the morally correct path. I don’t really know. Maybe I am an asshole co-dependent moron with a martyr complex. Maybe mothers are able to continually push our buttons and yank our strings forever, no matter how they treat us. I honestly don’t have a clue. I know they would never do for me what I do for them; I do for them anyway. I am not saying that because I feel it makes me a good person. I am not trying to be a good person. I am only doing the thing that feels least-bad to me in the moment.
But I am miserable. I am on a brand new, otherwise uninhabited floor of the Misery Index Hotel, and the paint here still smells latex fresh. And that misery is leaking out of me in all possible directions. I am totally dead inside, I feel nothing, no emotion is possible, has ever been possible. Just numb beige deadness and a sort of visceral internal frown. I can’t read, I don’t want to listen to music, I don’t want to watch movies, I don’t want to go places, I don’t want to talk to people, I don’t want to make things, I don’t want to be awake. I want to be asleep, unconscious, preferably for a few months. I want to not. I just want to not. And I want to not for a long, long, time.
I see other people, mostly online, and they talk about things like fun they’re having, or pleasure they’ve experienced, or things they are doing or want to do, and I think “Why? Can’t you stop?”
I think they must be lying, I think no one can really be feeling anything, they are clearly making up happiness and joy and pleasure. These are not real things, and they pretend they are just to make me feel even worse that I don’t have them. I see people going places I wonder what the point of that might be. I see people makings plans, posting photos, experiencing life in a way I can’t touch, and I hate them for it. I am full of sneering, cruel things to say, I am full of ugly, hateful emotions. I am not fit for company, I believe company is not fit for me, and I want no part of any of this clearly made-up “real” life that everyone is constantly rattling on about.
That is how I FEEL. It is different from what I KNOW. I know it is nonsense. I know that how I feel is not reality. I know that soon I will feel OK again myself, and want to do things, and want to touch the world and let it touch me back. But not right now. And I don’t know when, exactly, and I wish it would hurry up and get here. As much as it might not seem like it to anyone on the outside, wallowing here in this muck is not fun. Even though no one else can help me climb out, I hope they don’t think I like it here, even while I spend my time hating them for not being in the pit with me.
No I don’t.
I don’t know.
Oh go away February. Go away this winter. Go away these feelings. I just want to not be an insufferable cunt, sometime soon. Or less of an insufferable cunt, maybe. 50% less insufferable cuntitude in the next few weeks would be nice.
So dear nonexistent powers that be, to whom all my beseeching is pointless, dear dead void of nothingness that is the place to which I pour my pleadings – can we not anymore? And can we not, soon? And can we not for a long, long time?
Thanks ever so much for your consideration.