I have always loved words, how they flow together to create something beautiful or nonsensical. I have always had a journal going of everything I have ever heard and loved or something I read that touched deeper than my fingertips. There have always been two people who tend to make me feel more than I wanted, F. Scott Fitzgerald and Voltaire.
“Sometimes it’s harder to deprive oneself of a pain than a pleasure.” – F. Scott Fitzgerlad
“I have wanted to kill myself a hundred times, but somehow I am still in love with life. This ridiculous weakness is perhaps one of our more stupid melancholy propensities for is there anything more stupid than to be eager to go on carrying a burden which one would gladly throw away, to loathe one’s very being and yet to hold it fast, to fondle the snake that devours us until it has eaten our hearts away?” – Voltaire
These two quotes hit me briskly at first. I see the words and how they are strung together to form a sentence. I read it once to comprehend. I read it a second time, slower than the first so I can feel the words and a third to etch it in my mind, I read it the slowest this time, and I walk with the words. My heart aches with each syllable. When you have a false sense of identity, you cling to what never changes. Something, the only thing that is consistent- for me, is quotes. I find that there is safety in quotes. There is someone out there feeling how I feel that has put it all in words.
I am hoping I am doing the same. Not with beautifully written segments, but painfully true stories and poems, rants and raves. Hopefully every time I post, you feel how I feel, but for a brief moment, to understand how and what I am feeling, it’s all I ask. Just for understanding. For empathy.
I tend to have a problem being seen and heard. Yes, you walk by, you maybe glance my way, but I am not a person who you will ever see clearly in your dream, just a mirage of features that when you wake up you’ll think about the events that occurred, but I will never be questioned. When you walk by me at work or the store, I am not of interest or curiosity. My bright colored hair or my tattoos are interesting yes, but I remain plain to all eyes. I speak, “hello,” as we pass but you look the other way. You don’t mind ignoring what is already invisible.
The next day I am seen by strangers. “Oh you look so cute today!” the woman in the frozen aisle says to me. I say thank you and I hold on to her words. Tightly, before I forget them, I take her words and I shove them in a jar for safe keeping, for days I become invisible again. Today I am on top of the world, I can feel the sun touch my skin, hugging my body, singing, “it will be okay.” I let the world in and it embraces me as an old friend, “welcome back,” Mother Nature whispers. I see the colors as for the first time, vibrant and extraordinary shades of green; the blades of grass shake in the warm wind. This is what life is. Even the bird chirp makes me feel a part of something bigger.
Then next day I wake up and I hear the chirping of birds and I swear to god if they don’t shut the fuck up, then I am going to kill them all. Jace muffles good morning and I think to myself what is good about this morning? I begin to cry because just yesterday I was happy, I let the happiness slip through my fingers. I open the jar to relive the happy moments but I can’t even find the damn jar. I can’t even remember where the jar is. I cry harder and Jace is confused because we’ve only been up for 20 minutes and I already feel the crippling tinge of suicide. I can feel the fear set in, the angst of self-harm, I feel it all so much. My emotional skin is thin, paper thin; I can feel every inch of sadness beating into my body, cutting me open, leaving me vulnerable and more weak than I started. I am so worked up at this point I am literally choking on my saliva, coughing, wrapping myself in the blankets so the sun can never see me, so it can never touch my skin again. I tuck my knees to my chest, and rock underneath the blankets, I bury myself deeper and deeper trying to find safety.
So when Fitzgerald writes, “-it’s harder to deprive oneself of a pain than a pleasure,” and Voltaire replies, “for is there anything more stupid than to be eager to go on carrying a burden which one would gladly throw away, to loathe one’s very being and yet to hold it fast, to fondle the snake that devours us until it has eaten our hearts away?” I tilt my head down and let the tears fall. Because I like these men, question it all too much. I ask myself why I can feel so much sadness but struggle with happiness. I question why I crave life when I beg for death? Why I can’t let today’s troubles roll off my shoulders, why I hold onto it and play it over and over again in my head until I am paranoid to the point where I cannot move. Why do I let the snake tangle itself around my neck, suffocating me… slowly killing me? Why can’t I let it go?
I don’t know I just have always been.