Monday, January 10, 2011

The Blue Wham

Wham! It just gets you right between the eyes. Everything is fine. You inhale but somehow before you exhale the blue just seeps over everything and makes the last half of that breath so heavy you can’t do it.

I’ve been doing so well, or at least faking it well. Then today that heavy blue, like wet corduroy making every nuance a task, is all over everything. I don’t seem to be able to control it. I don’t seem to be able to recognize the switch that sets it off. All I can do is struggle under the soggy pressure and act like it neither effects or affects me.

The holidays are blessedly over. I knew they would be painful. Ironically the new job working from 8 PM to 4:30 AM helped. I spent most of the time just trying to figure out what day it was, making the depression seem palatable. It was there, but it was like a pained animal lurking in the bushes of my life, regaining its energy to strike.

It doesn’t make sense, the uncontrollable surge. It has no place in my life. Yet there it is constantly feeding me despair and hopelessness like Twinkies and Hot Tea. I try to resist, but when I least expect it, it is the temptation I cannot resist.

Things were going so well. I alluded myself into thinking I had it under control. I know it’s a problem that is going to be there for a while longer, but I think I’ve worked it out so no one knows it’s a part of every breath I take.

I’m usually only on the floor when the store is open for less than an hour, which has been good. Faking being normal in public is so exhausting. Most of the time, I work in one aisle by myself, so I don’t have to invent being inventive at conversation. I’ll be there chugging right along and suddenly find myself staring at a jar of Ragu and wondering what the point is.

The times I’ve desperately wanted to smash one of those jars with all the anger of my existence I’ve lost count. The energy it has taken to resist slicing open so much more than the box cartons would power Epcot Center. The imagined kicks to my own skull after a brief conversation with a coworker screaming “You’re letting them get too close” are more consistent than the snow here.

But I’ve been good. I’ve fought it. I haven’t curled up in a little ball like a hamster too sick to find its wheel as much and every time I’ve managed to stave it off from anyone who would notice or care.

I’ve smiled. I’ve laughed. I’ve been thoroughly human when that is actually the very last possible emotion I could really feel. I’ve resigned to it. This is how it is and it’s the best thing.

I can’t let it just take over. I cannot let the blue be the only stimulation of my world. It’s an acting chore, like the wonderful Swoosie Kurtz once said, “You just imagine it in your head and do it, eventually it will become real”.

That’s what I’m doing. Imagining being a human, hoping eventually it will become real. I was once. I will be again. I have to be again. I refuse to become a casualty in my own war.

Yesterday was such a great day. I slept late, wasn’t groggy or cranky getting up. Went to work, in public and enjoyed the craziness that is “there is snow on the ground so we’ll never ever be able to buy food again”. I laughed and smiled and was helpful.

I came home, ate a snack and played on the Internet until the Tylenol PM finally engulfed me. I even got a compliment via Twitter from a writer. It was a good day. I went to sleep faking happy so well it was almost real.

Then today, the wham of blue attacked from the corner it was hiding in. There is no pill, no counseling, no emotion, no action that can shake it. For lack of a better image, it’s a debilitating chigger always there until it finally dies and falls off.

Maybe there is something to cover the effects, but there’s nothing to make it go away and never ever come back. Yes, yes there is. There is something inside me that does this. There is something triggering this off, stronger each time but thankfully with longer periods of being able to fake it not being there in between.

All I have to do is find it. All I have to do is stop the trigger or recognize it enough to switch it back off. All I have to do is trust that some how, some way, some day this will all be in the past, carcass in the little box with all the other nightmares I’ve slain.

I’d ask for help. I get on my knees scratching my bloody eyes screaming for help if there was anything anyone could do. This is something only I can do.

I’ll be fine. I promise. I’ll get past all this. I will be human again, as normal as it can be in the eye of the beholder. But I’ll never ever love the blue.