I thought I was out of the cycle. Ok, maybe not completely…but I thought…
I really thought that I’d started to live in the spaces a little.
Those minutes/days between numbness and overwhelméd-ness: I thought I could see around them! They had loomed so large in my vision for so long that I didn’t know they were not reality. So I guess that’s where I saw progress at least; I felt a little better and got glimpses of the Big Rock Candy Mountain life I could be living.
The core of me knew the difference. I wasn’t out yet. I wasn’t even seeing reality! I was seeing hopeful visions of what might be real. It’s like how you can feel the cold surface of a glass and know that ice is inside without seeing or touching the ice itself. I’m an Imposter! If anyone found out how cold I am, I’d be found out! It’s so UNFAIR
How can my brain work well enough to grapple with the philosophical et. al. ramifications of suicidal ideation but not reflexively know how to tell if I need something? Food, rest, a bathroom, anything!
I live every moment as if I’m inside of a time loop. Over and over, my reality is the moment between life and death; that instant when your last gasp of air is squeezed out of you right before everything goes black. Someone is choking me. I can feel the pressure on my neck while all my muscles tense to help me escape. I can feel the panic rise while my oxygen level drops. I feel hopeless. I feel betrayed. I feel trapped. And then I feel nothing.
I know what shock feels like because I have felt it so many times before. I know what a concussion feels like for the same reason. I know how it feels to be strangled because I feel it still every moment. “Chronic pain” may be my current label but it really leaves a lot out.
It makes sense that my body would have trouble processing food or fighting off illness if my physical reality is pain, panic, and possible death while everyone around me is making their lunch orders. I live in denial of this for so long. And I can’t consider it for too long at once because then I do spin into a panic. However.
My physical reality will not be denied. I can try to pretend I’m not feeling what I’m feeling and my life becomes a cycle of high anxiety/high depression/high anxiety/high depression round and round and round
That’s how I end up deciding on death.
It is actually very logical and makes a lot of sense especially in a country with limited public health services and a strong sense of patriarchy:
-If I must exist in the way I’ve been existing AKA If I cannot get better
then I will continue to hurt the people around me
-If I hurt the people around me by existing
then my existence is adding more pain to the world and not helping at all
-If I have tried everything available to me and it hasn’t fixed it
then continued labor in that direction is expecting a different result while trying the same thing (we all know the definition of crazy, yes?)
When I get to this point in the self-awareness, I usually get very panicked because I know the conclusion is suicide but that’s not allowed. First of all, intense fear of god’s wrath for killing oneself; next, I made a promise to myself when I was 12 that I wouldn’t; also, I made a promise to someone else.
Since that’s not allowed, I am faced with the hell of my existence forever, cycling through, tumbling in chaos, my body systems in full emergency mode until they break down for good. But that runs into problems too. This is precisely how we got here, actually – I knew my body was going to fail and I was going to die if I didn’t figure out what was wrong with me, so I made a desperate reach to save my life.
And here we are months and years later and we come to it. My body can be treated, I can take pills, my wounds can be forced through a healing process of sorts, but unless and until I get out of the time loop my physiology will continue to react to the crisis. Yes, I am a little better than before. But my body. It does not work like it should. It does not put it’s energy into the right places.
This is the farthest I’ve gotten while remaining sort of calm. I want to believe that it gets better. I want to believe that I CAN get better. I want to feel that this moment is not forever.
But remember, for me, in every sense, this moment IS my forever.