To say the past 22 months have been a walk uphill on a slippery slope would be an understatement. Everything I knew to be steadfast, wholesome, trusting, supportive; to cite a few adjectives became a 360 degree spin on my worlds axis. What I thought would be a temporary setback, turned into the mother of all emotional avalanches to which I sadly became buried, stifled, and for the first time in a long time, I was the hero that needed saving. I held on for dear life to the shreds of my cape hoping that any residual strength, pride, and self-reliance would be found within the threads. For a while, I was able to white knuckle it and not outwardly display the fear, pain, confusion, and disappointment I was eating like bitter snacks seemingly 24 hours a day. Sleep became an enigma and I spent so much time awake or in a state of delirium that the haze and constant blur became the only state of being I knew and real happiness came in errant waves and were mostly short-lived. Real feelings and emotions were filtered by the few moments where I could actually be myself and take the wretched mask off. It was in those moments I felt human and raw and able to release the pressure valve for a while, but like before; it was short-lived. I would soon have to put the mask back on, play the many roles required of me, and act as if all was right in my world.
This charade was not only exhausting, but depleting. I became a shell of whom I used to be and I no one seemed to notice. I was often complimented on my strength and my ability to stand firm on my turbulent ground, which was ironic and sadly it was the kind of performance worthy of an Oscar. I think it was warmly received because no one really knew how to handle me and/or be able to guide me through the myriad of emotions and other things I was going through. It was during that time that I realized the power in the saying goodbye; well, metaphorically at least. I began to intentionally fall back from people. I stopped calling, texting, emailing, and such in order to preserve what little of me was left to stop the constant regurgitation of my situation, what I doing about it, and how I was handling it. I realized that it was mostly out of courtesy why I was being asked; instead out of the genuine want to help me. Don’t get me wrong, I mean no disrespect or disparagement, but that’s how I saw it and it’s often how it was presented. There were a few that made themselves available to me and forced me to keep it real and not hide behind the smile that could fool many. The kindness of strangers became the comfort and companionship I needed and I held on to that as my life preserver.
Oddly and sadly, my previous adversities had already primed me for how well I can assume the leading lady role; though there was a marked change in the script, which I was ill-prepared for. I’d never suffered through death, I’d never been unwillingly unemployed, I’d never seen the backs of friends turn so quickly and easily when I’d always had theirs, and I’d certainly never thought I’d be dangerously close to being destitute in more than a financial way. When we think of being destitute, we think financially, but I’m hear to tell you that emotional destitution can be equally, if not more so frightening. Money and material things often come and go; however, losing oneself is much harder to recover from. I sat at the crossroads of “What the fuck? and Why the fuck? Is this happening” for a very long time with no real directional gauge available. The one thing I was able to count on with absolute abandon was faith and prayer and they were my constant companions and never left my side; though they couldn’t prevent the feeling of being lost. I relied on them and they never let me down, but when you’re deep into the abyss of what you’re going through, it’s not always easy to feel their security. I know God wouldn’t put me through more than what He thought I could handle and I, without a shadow of doubt, don’t fault Him for my circumstance; however, like I just said, when you’re in the abyss, darkness is the light in front of you.
I found many positives that complimented the negative situations exploding and manifesting around me and I’m thankful that I still had the presence of mind to realize that in spite of myself. For 22 months, I had a hard time writing through my pain, which is odd given that writing has always been the one thing I could count on for comfort, release, and strength, but when you’re lost and broken, even the things that bring you joy are elusive. I’ve bottled up things that should have been said; should have been released; and should have not lasted this long, but they have. Maybe being on the cusp of a new year has finally allowed me the release I so badly need; maybe not, but whatever has prompted it, I welcome it. I welcome and embrace the opportunity to write and purge myself of what has held me hostage for all this time. It will not always be easy and it will; as I suspect, make me rather angry, but anger is good. Anger will allow me to break the wall down. Jesus got angry too and turned over the table at the temple, so if He can get mad in order to get his point across, then I can too.
I have made a promise to myself and a trusted, dear friend that I plan to honour. I will be more vocal and I will not suppress or sequester my feelings. It’s time for me to gain a new cape, but the right way and for the right reasons.
That is all!