Tuesday, December 25, 2007

A Side Of Pain With That Pain Sandwich.

I just had the most amazing meltdown. It was worthy of my college years, those coked-out whoring years of drunken depressive madness. I haven't thrown such a huge fit in a long, long time.

It's just that it's Christmas, and everyone is either dead or going to die. I am spending all my time working and hurting and being pissed off and having to force myself, to remind myself, to take care of myself...all while everyone and everything I love is either already dead or dying.

I wish I could spend every moment surrounded by everyone and everything I love or have loved in the past. Maybe this room full of approximately 50 beings could do yoga together or pray or eat Christmas dinner, but at least we could be together, and time wouldn't be passing by with everyone always in different rooms, dying. Maybe I could move the bodies of all my dead relatives and friends and pets and find all the things I've lost and missed and put them in the room, too.

I had forgotten that wild, panic-stricken feeling...that long, long corridor of life ahead and behind me with pain and pain and pain all along the way. There's pain behind. There's pain ahead. There's pain right now. There's pain everywhere, and I don't want to do anymore pain. I want to retire from pain. I want everyone to agree that I've met my pain quotient, and I don't have to do anymore hurting ever again.

All I ask is that if I love you, you stay close to me, forgive me for whatever wrongs I've done to you, and never die. Is that too much?

My death-filled mind quickly became consumed with the pain ahead and behind and present, and I went to a place I don't go much anymore...but it used to be my default mechanism for calming down when my emotions got the best of me: I wanted to hurt myself. I wanted to find a straight razor and slice my arms or my thighs or my feet or my stomach or anywhere that would hurt just enough and look just red and bloody enough to give me something to look at, some outward manifestation of the inward hurting, like a marker. Like a bookmark for my emotional page. Like a gravestone for a dying experience. Like a souvenir.

I also got increasingly upset that it's Christmas, and there's no one to talk to and nowhere to go, and then, slowly and surely, I realized that there was, technically, someone...there was that man who sleeps next to me. That man who lives in my house. I do, technically, pay for him to live in my house, so maybe it's not too much to ask for a little comfort while I've got a brainful of razor blades and death.

"I can't calm down," I tell him.

"What do you want me to do? Why are you mad at me?"

"It's not you. Or it is you. Everyone is going to die."

"No! Things are getting better! If you love me, you will see that things are getting better."

"I don't mean anything about you, or I do, but I mean I can't calm down and I need you to hold me."

"I don't know what you want me to say."

"I want you to hold me."

"You need to take an anxiety pill."

Handy addicts with their medicinal cure-alls...I avoid taking mood-altering substances as if, well, as if the need to take mood-altering substances had ruined my life. But this time, my sweet addict was right. Those razor-blade obsessing hissy fits are exactly what the anxiety pills are made for, so I took the pill he brought me, and I let him hold me and talk to me. He asked me if we could pray together, reminded me to focus, to breathe ("Don't they tell you that in yoga?"), to pray.

It was nice, and I feel better now. Perhaps it's the medication, and perhaps it's the comfort of my partner, and perhaps it's both...but either way, I feel more myself, less lost in that past and future nexus of despair, and ready to go to bed.