I’m having a really difficult time lately. There’s so much swirling around in this brain of mine that I’m having trouble making sense of things. It’s when this starts to happen that I feel panicked because this is exactly how it started when my major depression set in and all hell broke loose. I’m not afraid of dying, I’m at peace with my eventual exit, but what terrifies me are the feelings that make death seem like the best answer to what’s going on in my life.
My roommate and I were driving home from an evening in the mountains and as we talked, she asked what I would do if the sky opened up and God appeared. I think I joked that I’d probably believe I’d gone insane, but what really struck me, and what I didn’t say, was that the first thing that came to my mind was “I’d ask him to take me with him.” And that’s where I’ve found myself on occasion over these past few weeks, as holidays approached. That old familiar feeling of just wishing I could disappear.
The holidays this year brought back this rush of intense loneliness that feels very different that it has since Valerie left. It wasn’t the sadness that came with her departure, it was worse…the sadness that comes with a soul-sucking darkness in the middle of my chest, like a black hole. I’m so terrified of losing my mind again. I’m so afraid to fall apart. I’ve got the voice in my head telling me I’m a disappointment. I’ve got the feeling I’m not enough for anyone. I fel like everything I do falls short of everyone’s expectations and though I know it’s not likely true – it doesn’t make it any easier. It FEELS true.
I’m a thinker. Nothing that happens in and around me escapes this processing plant in my brain. I pay attention to every word, movement, action, silence, note, text, message, email. I go over and over what it means so that I can figure out what to do with it. This does not always help me. It’s overwhelming, especially at times like this where I feel vulnerable and raw. I’m overwhelmed trying to find the meaning in a life that feels meaningless. I look at the dreams I’ve had, the hope I felt and then to where I am now and I don’t know what to do. I feel like my dreams have fallen apart and I know I need to adjust, to make room for a new dream, but I’m having a hell of a time knowing what plan B is supposed to be. I look at my life- the entirety of it – and I realize that this is not where I thought I’d be at 38. I imagined a home with kids to fill it. I imagined something much bigger than what I’ve allowed myself with the choices I’ve made. Maybe that’s the worst part of all of this – knowing that I am where I am now because I’ve chosen this life for myself.
My therapist suggested that maybe I chose Valerie because I was lonely and I felt like taking care of her would make her love me. I don’t know that it’s true, I don’t believe that I’m just some lonely sucker who gives everything away, hoping it will make people like me. It doesn’t feel true, but I don’t know what or who to trust anymore. I feel like I can’t trust myself and my own feelings because that’s exactly how I found myself in a relationship with Valerie in the first place. It’s how I found myself loving someone who would not ever love me back. It feels so humiliating to admit that.
I’m just so tired. My heart feels pushed to the limits. I want to badly to find a partner, but I don’t know how I’m supposed to do that now. I didn’t know when Valerie left, I don’t know it now, and I didn’t know in the months between. I feel broken. I feel like my life is in ruins and I don’t know how to find the energy to start picking up the pieces anymore. I only know how to distract myself with people, with fun, drinks and dancing, parties and food. I don’t know how to do the work and even if I did, I’m not sure I have the energy to do it all again. I feel like a coward where once I felt so brave. I feel incapable where once I felt I could do anything. I feel so afraid and too ashamed to show that to anyone. But it’s who I am right now – scared every minute of every day that this is how it ends. First things get worse and then, they get worse some more. I don’t want that to be the truth, but right now it feels like it is.