Pain, and pleasure, and the church-bells softly chime.

My 36th birthday is coming up soon. Still stuck living with The Rabbit. Things are still just as crazy, overwhelming, and stressful as ever here. My birthday will mark 3 years of being stuck in this hellhole, after coming back from my disastrous trip to visit Lime. It’s nerve-wracking, the omnipresent sensory overload here.

Broke up with Moonbeam almost a year ago. Started writing a post about it… 6? 7? months ago, was really zoned in, in the middle of the night, doing some amazing writing, editing, only a few hours into the process (many of my medium-length posts are the result of half a day’s total effort) and was pulled out of all of that by The Rabbit‘s endless cough-gag-snort-hrkkkhrrrrk! in the next room as she started her day. I never was able to get back into working on the piece. The draft is still sitting there; I don’t remember when I even last opened it.

Things have been going well with my current therapist. The beginning of November marked a year of seeing her. It also marked 3 years since breaking up with MFP. Other than the very brief fling with the incredibly immature and naïve Moonbeam, and getting to spend time with Again once every few months, I haven’t really had anything going on in the relationships department. I’ve had plenty of the usual “oh hey, she’s totally into me!” which have predictably turned into “huh, I guess she’s cut me out of her life; would’ve been nice to let me know what happened.” And, as always, there are physically-distant people who would love to share my bed — and I theirs — if not for the fact that these would-be lovers are in different states, countries, or even hemispheres. Can’t go down on someone in a different time zone, or share a cozy dinner at a quiet table for two when there are twenty borders between us.

I’m supposed to be going in to take a bath, then try to make sure I get some food, and hopefully get some rest afterwards. If I’m lucky, the friend who said to check in with her to see if she’s free to hang out will indeed be free today; if not I’ll still see about leaving this place. Don’t know where I’ll go.

Line my eyes and call me pretty… please? (Or, “Maybe More Merry?”)

I got thinking about how surprising it was that several hours have gone by already since I posted before, and how all the crazy-making things about this place really wear me down. But then, I realized — and in fact, nearly commanded myself — I should get myself together, that sitting in wonder shouldn’t last forever.

In other words:

It’s astounding; time is fleeting.
Madness takes its toll.
But, listen closely:
Not for very much longer!
I’ve got to keep control!

Huh. Now for some reason I feel like drinking for a moment. Odd..

At any rate, it really is astounding, just how little it takes of having some time to myself in order to feel a fuckton better. Once she’s gone away, all it takes is a little light reading from an old favorite, an orgasm before that, and a little bit of happy music (or maybe the happy music happened because I was already feeling good? I mean, the suggestive dance performance I was putting on for an imagined partner or several while listening might be an indicator that things were going all right…) Took a bath, found a lovely, large bruise on my leg that I’ve apparently had for a couple of days (I can read the color/age of bruises pretty well, but I’m honestly much more out of practice than I’d like) but that I don’t remember getting. It’s got a nice big bump to it as well, the kind of lump I would expect to remember! Oh well.

I’m hungry. I ate a little bit of food yesterday evening, but that was all I had yesterday. I’m debating whether to try and put something together now, whether to just try and sleep a little bit (it’s less than 4 hours until Again is supposed to get here to pick me up and whisk me away from this misery to a much more delightful locale) or whether to caffeinate myself instead. Shit! As I type that, I realize that I filled up the drink cup at Jack In The Box last night with a couple different highly-caffeinated soda flavors. No fucking wonder I’m still wide awake.

Well! No more caffeine for now, then. Perhaps a mild sedative, then, and see if I can catch a bit of a nap.

Ferry Chrucking Mistmas.

Just a few more minutes until xmas starts here, and nothing is all that different from usual. The Rabbit is in the next room coughing, clearing her throat, hacking up snot from her throat, blowing her nose loudly and frequently. Likely at least another half-hour, maybe longer, before she’ll even begin trying to shut down her computer and start getting herself to bed, which takes another half an hour usually. Meanwhile, I’ve been trying to keep myself distracted from how horny I am, because there’s nothing I can do about it until she’s at the other end of the house; the lack of privacy here is incredibly frustrating on a nonstop basis.

I’m supposed to be ready tomorrow morning by about 10am — last-minute plans to spend the day with Again, whose holiday plans fell through. Hoping to fuck that I can get some rest before then, and hoping I can take care of a few things I’d really really like to accomplish before i get some sleep. So fucking sick of being stuck here. Sick of The Rabbit‘s complete obliviousness to all the shit surrounding her, all the shit she causes, everything. it’s so horrible here. And she’s said to me, explicitly, “I never wanted you here.” Well, fuck you too, since I never wanted to be here, but hey, you’re the one who made the goddamned offer in the first place, so…

Miserable. I’ve said it plenty before, but this place is killing me. It’s a slow death, but it’s death nonetheless. I mean, within the last couple of weeks, I had a night where, for the first time in easily 20 years… I could see swallowing an entire bottle of sleeping pills as a choice that I could make. I chose not to, that night. But it was a choice I could have made, and I recognized it as such. That ought to scare me; instead it was more of a “huh. Guess I’m not in great shape. ~shrug~

I don’t know how I’m going to possibly find a home. Ever. Things have only gotten worse since I last ranted about how shitty housing options are around here, and they’re continuing to fall apart spectacularly for anyone who isn’t wealthy. It’s hopeless. Utterly hopeless.

Past 5 in the morning; feeling worse for the weather, it seems.

“And I was gonna write a poem about how fire is the only thing that can make a person jump out of a window, […] but depression, too, is a kind of fire… and I know nothing of either.” –Taylor Mali, “Depression Too Is a Type of Fire”

Yesterday I wanted to be dead. Not to kill myself, not to die, just… to cease existing. And yes, I could recognize that having been awake for over 24 hours straight — having lost count of exactly how many — likely helped color my view of the world, but I could also recognize that it only added intensity to what is generally sitting just under everything else, just like alcohol lowers my inhibitions but doesn’t make me do anything I wouldn’t have done while sober. A few drinks might make me do whatever it is more easily, more quickly, with less hesitation; being sleep-deprived and hungry makes me hit those lows more profoundly, more easily too.

Before falling asleep yesterday evening, I posted some depressed and depressing rant like I frequently do, I sent my therapist a text message letting her know I was “wishing hard I wasn’t alive” and that I was about to sleep, and then I got a message on Facebook from Escrow. The first message just said “hey!” And shit, I was overwhelmed, barely able to cope, and I was starting to tell her thanks for checking in but that I couldn’t really process chatting right then… but as I was doing so, she mentioned that she was checking to see that I was safe because she’d heard about a huge fire in my general overall area and she was worried about me.

Oh, right. I’d seen the “safety check” thing from Facebook when I’d picked up my phone, and I had dismissed the notification because it was more shit that I couldn’t deal with when I was already struggling to deal with everything else… but the check-in from a dear friend drove home something that I have known for a long time: an immediate, obvious threat to life gets responses. The slow quotidian slide, the mundane yet no less significant forces that are weighing me down and killing me… those are much, much harder to get help in dealing with. It’s the reason why, in the past, I might have made an obvious post about being ready to kill myself. Or why I might have called a crisis hospital and said that I believed I was a danger to myself or others. Or why I might have chosen any number of, essentially, ruses to make it seem as if there were an immediate, obvious threat to my life. Because that’s what people respond to! But, of course, the responses I’d get in those situations aren’t really all that helpful. And there’s the additional aspect of being “the girl who cried wolf,” because if I ever were at a point where I had specific plans to kill myself and enough motivation to do so, then I’d want to know that I hadn’t left behind me a trail of people too burned by my prior attention-grabbing to intervene when I really needed it.

So I don’t do that kind of thing anymore. Haven’t for years. But when things are caving in under the heaviness of life with depression, and I’m feeling alone and hurting and would love to have someone I know and trust be there for me — not because I’m about to die, but because I’m struggling in other, equally difficult ways… it seems a lot like, well,

“When I expressed my desire to kill myself, I was overwhelmed with offers from people who wanted to spend time with me. Two weeks later, though, I couldn’t get any of them to pick up the phone. It made recovery really difficult because it communicated that people only really cared when I was in crisis.” –Kitty Stryker, “So Someone You Love Is Suicidal”

The title of this post comes from the lyrics of an Erasure song, “Rock Me Gently.” The official music video is a shorter cut than the album version, which basically takes away the otherworldly sadness of synthesizers amid the shrieks of Diamanda Galás which make it such a perfect match to my mood on many occasions. The chorus, however, is simple, direct, and to the point:

“I dream you’re with me
You hold me sweetly
And rock me gently to sleep
In your arms.”

I wish I knew what that felt like again. It’s been a very long time indeed.

Friday Raves & Rants

Well, I thought that setting a schedule for myself would make writing happen. I ought to know better than that, but “hope springs eternal,” as they say. It’s been… a while since my last post, although the ideas swirling around and the mental first-draft paragraphs are always with me…

I’m going to attempt a wider-than-the-week Rave/Rant post, though my focus will be on this last 7-day period.

RAVE: Last night I went to see a play. It was George Bernard Shaw’s “You Never Can Tell,” and it was delightful! I’d heard that there was a local production, and that it was in its last week, so I mentioned to The Rabbit that it was going on and (although it took her from Sunday to Thursday morning to actually get around to it) she got tickets and we went to see. It was my first time seeing a production by that particular company, and although I’d been saying that it was my first exposure to Shaw, I realized that I’m at least indirectly familiar with his work through “My Fair Lady” — I grew up on that movie, and bits of it still come to mind easily (for example, Rex Harrison’s “Damn, damn, damn, damn!” when I’m frustrated at a realization of my own faults and the accompanying realization that I have the obligation to be a better person in the future.)

RANT: Much of the week following my last post, The Rabbit was out of town. She didn’t, however, provide me with much in the way of specifics about her expected departure or return, and even less in the form of written reference. She pays me to keep an eye on her cat and her house while she’s away, but the amount she left was considerably less than what I seemed to recall her having promised before, and I ended up having to change and cancel at the last minute plans I’d made — and looked forward to — thanks to her lack of communication (which, if you’ve read much of my previous work here, you’ll know has been a consistent thorn in my side. I don’t deal well with assumption, with passive-aggressive attempts at saying what you don’t really mean in order to get me to somehow guess at what you want to communicate, with being left in the dark more often than not.) I also ended up having to clean up a huge mess of feline vomit and feces one of those nights when I’d expected her to already be back in town, when I was already exhausted, mostly ready for bed, and not at all prepared to deal with trying to keep myself from throwing up while I bent down to scoop up shit from the middle of a puddle of puke on the kitchen floor. I did at least have a sarcastic laugh in realizing that at least it was on the linoleum, rather than the shag carpet which would have perfectly matched the shade of those bodily fluids, and made the cleanup more effort than I would have been willing to invest.

RANT: She and I ended up fighting quite a bit via email — or, at least, I penned honest and vulnerable but quite angry missives to her, saying things I’ve avoided bringing up which are, which have been, consistent problems… and at least at first she bothered to touch on a couple of the points  brought up (like considerably under-paying me for housesitting and pet care) but then just completely stopped responding. She seems convinced that ignoring problems will make them go away. Meanwhile, back over here in reality, her unwillingness to even attempt to engage with me when I say “look, this thing you’re doing is causing me real and significant harm, could you please do something about it? Or if you’re not going to do something about it, could you even manage to just tell me it’s not gonna happen so I can resign myself to that fact? Can you give me anything to work with?” isn’t making those problems go away. It’s just slowly eroding my sanity and leaving me even less capable of coping with everything.

RAVE: I… think I met someone? I’m frightened to be too hopeful just yet, but she’s gorgeous, we get along beautifully, we share many interests and our conversation flows easily, her worldviews and outlook have, so far over the few evenings we’ve shared together, seemed sensible and sane — even on a few topics that are often quite divisive. And, of course, she’s absolutely sexy as fuck. I did mention that, I suppose, but… yeah. And… she understands (and has lived with) the repeated pain of having someone wonderful suddenly vanish, often without warning or explanation. That shared vulnerability means a lot to me. We haven’t yet had any discussion about “what are we/what would we like to be.” it’s early for that, but I’m hopeful despite myself.

RAVE/RANT: I went back to look through my dad’s poetry tonight. He and I haven’t… really… been on very good terms… in a long time. But back in the middle of 2014, after nearly 2 years of silence from him, he provided me with access to the section of his website he’d made private which contains a database of his poetry, stuff he’s written over the last nearly 20 years. That came after I mentioned to my mom (who I talk with on the phone fairly often) that I’d noticed it was suddenly no longer public; I occasionally find myself seeking comfort or consolation or creative spark from his writing, and I’ve told him so. (He’d tucked things away behind a password so that he could submit his work to potentially be published in places that ask for new or unpublished work.) That’s the good part. The not-so-good part is, as I was reading through one after another of his most recent work, from the past 3 or 4 months… suddenly I saw “Internal Server Error” pages for a short time, and then a page stating that the poetry section was “temporarily unavailable.” While my rational mind keeps repeating to me that the simplest explanation is that there really was some sort of error, and that it’s just a temporary server issue… my emotions and anxiety keep trying to tell me that he noticed the access, that he suspects it was me (I know that at least at one point, and likely still, he had his own custom-coded analytics and access logs that recorded basic stuff like which poems were accessed, at what times, and from which IP addresses, and I do have a few favorites which I stopped on before checking out his latest) and that he is purposely blocking me from seeing his writing. But, I also recognize that my anxious mind often comes up with elaborate scenarios in which people’s behavior is intentionally malicious and designed to show hate or anger or disgust towards me, while I work hard to amplify the sensible side saying “It’s not about you! Don’t attribute to malice what can be more easily blamed on error, accident, circumstance, or idiocy!” So… I don’t know.

RANT: I’m still often not getting out of the house at all. It can be a week or more between me getting out, and often that’s “getting out of bed.” The last week has been better with that, and it really does make a huge fucking difference in keeping the depression at bay… though obviously it doesn’t eliminate it completely. Monday I was out for my weekly therapist appointment, and it was a really emotionally intense session. I hadn’t really grasped how hard it had hit me until a while later, and I suddenly recognized how dark a place I was, how much I was stuck in the “I don’t want to exist” pit.

RAVE: Despite that, I’ve also had a few days so far this week which I’ve spent getting better acquainted with a cute little cafe I’d only been to a couple of times before, and then spending time soaking in a lovely hot tub in a lovely garden nearby. It’s self-care, and some particular forms of that which I’ve not done very much of in a long while. Small steps.

RAVE: Being able to share company with a whole lot of different cool people recently. There are folks out there who not only indulge me by listening to my puns and quips, but appreciate them and share their own back. People who like hearing me break into song at the slightest reference, and it hasn’t felt like I’m just being used as a party trick to get a few giggles, but that my contributions are genuinely desired and bring heartfelt smiles. It feels weird, but good-weird, and I’m recognizing as I write this that I hesitate to say “friends…” but I think that’s what I have around me more and more often. And of course, as soon as I say that, my brain launches into the thousands of reasons that it’s not really “friends” I have, and the countless things that I still lack. But I’m doing my best to shut that voice up, because, quite frankly, it’s full of shit, and I deserve to let myself believe the good things that I have instead of dismissing them out of hand. It’s work. Hard work. And it’s uncomfortable. But unlearning broken scripts, changing the things I do when they no longer serve me, adapting to what really does bring pleasure… is often an uncomfortable, messy process. But it’s worth it. So very, very worth it. Patience.

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