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.

Somebody bring me some water!

I’ve been up a little less than 6 hours now. I slept for about 10 hours before that, after finally knocking myself out with NyQuil.

My head has been absolutely THUNDERING PAIN since I woke up, and at first I figured I was probably dehydrated, and possibly a little bit hungry too. I went to get something to drink just after I was awake, but I had so  little energy that I just drank a glass of milk because I didn’t feel like pouring any more than that. I got some leftovers out and heated them, and after 3 minutes of heating I didn’t care if it was warmed through or not. Hungry. Took that back upstairs and ate a little bit, but had no appetite and finally dragged the rest back to the fridge…

Then I figured since the headache was still around, I’d take a bath. I was already feeling irritable because when I was trying to microwave my food, I didn’t have anywhere to set things as I was wrangling with the haphazard house-of-cards mess that comprises the fridge contents, because The Rabbit had left her mess of stuff all over when she went to bed (she doesn’t tend to clean up behind herself, though, which is a continual frustration for me.) So I go in to the tub with a headache and a foul mood…

…and then I spend almost 15 minutes cleaning up after her so that I could take a bath! She had left her shampoo precariously balanced on the edge of the tub the other day when she took a bath this week (she seems to only bathe weekly or less,) and that must have been the crashing noise I heard when I was using the toilet a couple days ago. I didn’t think to check, because I’m pretty much fed up with constantly cleaning up after her, with that work never acknowledged or thanked or possibly even ever noticed. Well, that shampoo bottle wasn’t in the tub anymore, but the long trail of shampoo that had poured out across the entire length of the tub down to the drain was in the tub.

That stuff makes a hell of a lather, I’ll tell you that much.

Took my bath, nice and hot the way I like it (and the heat actually lasted through the entire time filling the tub, which is unusual.) Head is still POUNDING. All the coughing I’ve been doing hasn’t helped, either. The worst of this cold was fairly short, but this fucking cough has been killing me still, almost a week after the rest of the symptoms have gone.

So I sit down to write about it the headache, and as I’m looking at the numbers, I realize that from the time I ate dinner on Monday night until the time I pecked at a tiny bit of my leftovers was over 24 hours without food. And the worse part is shrugging my shoulders at the knowledge that it’s not unusual at all for me. I don’t have very much in the way of food I can eat here, and even when I do, it’s not much help since I’m usually trying to get the fuck out of here to attempt to maintain my sanity.

I still have no idea how I’m going to find a place to live. I can’t afford the luxury of a safe roof overhead, and I can’t afford the constant sensory assault, the complete lack of time alone, and the consistent stressful interactions with the people here, living on someone else’s schedule. I don’t have enough energy to throw myself into any significant work, and all of the things I need to accomplish require help or input from other people. Even something that should be simple, like cleaning this room I’m staying in I can’t do alone; it requires The Rabbit to get her stuff cleared out more (and she’s promised and promised that she’ll make some closet space free so I can at least put my clothes away.) That doesn’t happen without her actually putting in the time and effort. And when I’m not sleeping well, or enough… and I’m not eating well, or enough… and I’m not masturbating regularly even when I’m horny… and I’m barely scraping by in far too many ways… I don’t have the energy to do more than that.

My head still hurts, so I really ought to publish this, get some more liquid in me, take some ibuprofen, and maybe throw in some cough syrup to the mix because this stupid tickle in my throat is driving me crazy.

“Hugs and kisses, I’m always right there if you need to talk!”

isolation made more poigniant
your “hug” is just dots on this display
it is not arms around me
it is not warmth at my side
it is not breasts pressed tight against my own

you mean well
i know you mean well
but you wound with your well-wishes
good intent betrayed
by the breeze blowing cold across my back
by the pillow clutched in my almost-empty arms
by my heart beating slowly to its sad and solitary song

when you ask if i want to talk to you about it
the answer is yes
but not to the question you really mean

i want to TALK
to YOU

you are not a video screen
you are not a telephone
tapping on computer keys
makes a very different sound from speech
and compressing the vibrations from my throat and lips
to translate into digital bits
beamed out and back again to the little box beside your ear
cannot compare to the full sensory fidelity
of my voice muffled against your tear-wet shoulder

understand, then, if i seem angry
when you offer
yet again
the same shallow substitutes
which cannot
will never
satisfy my needs

understand
that i will not comprimise
that i will have what i need
or nothing at all

understand
and do not scold me
for knowing what i want
standing firm and unwilling
to settle for less

if you cannot offer what i ask
so be it
you certainly have no obligation
to care for me
but if you don’t fulfill those needs
then i will suffer through this

alone

as i so often do

Happy S.A.D. (Singles’ Awareness Day, February 14)

hold me
spoon me
you can be the big one
if you want

slap my face
harder
let me be your good girl

shove my head
closer to your cunt
my hair is the handle
make yourself come
with my tongue
and my lips
here for you to use

fill me with your hand
or your cock
still yours
whether you wear it or not

kiss me sweetly
kiss me rough
it doesn’t matter

since it’s only ever make-believe
since it’s only wishes and longing
since it’s only me

alone

single

and fucked (except not)

I hear the doorbell ring and suddenly the panic takes me

I need to write.
I want to write.

But I’m balancing that need
That desire
Against my physical exhaustion
Against my minimal food intake today
Against the enormous effort that it takes
To remain outwardly calm
While the sounds from the next room
Fill me with
Irrational
Insistent
Immense

PANIC.

No, it’s not a “logical” connection.
No, I can’t explain why those sounds affect me as they do.
No, it’s not just me finding something to complain about.

I have worked over many years
Learned very carefully
Through practice
Mistakes
Refinement of technique
To appear relaxed
And pleasant
And friendly

Instead of screaming as loudly as my lungs allow
Smashing any solid object within reach
Against any other object in my swing
Stomping and smashing
Making noise and breaking things
All in a feeble and ever-failed attempt
To demonstrate to others —
But no, not a demonstration —
It’s an attempt to harm others
In a fashion that they can comprehend
To a degree equivalent
To the harm they inflict on me.

I have learned to be mute
I have learned to accept harm
I have learned to do nothing in retaliation
I have learned to turn inward and die

And I am praised for my “success” far too often
Told that I am “strong”
That I am “brave”
That I have “accomplished so much”

How is it
That so many seem to envy
This so-called “skill”
Of saying nothing
Doing nothing
Lying on the ground after being driven there again
And most of all for my friendly smile
And calm, even voice
As I am kicked again and again and again?

You value self-restraint
You value compliance
You value non-violence and avoiding confrontation
And I have learned these things you so value

But you never taught me when to stop holding back
You never taught me how to say, “Fuck no, and fuck you!”
You never taught me how to knock a motherfucker out when they come at me wrong
Or to do anything but whimper, turn, and run or better yet, stay and take it with a smile

So I have learned nothing of value at all

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