This isn’t a poem. This isn’t a story.
Maybe I write poetry or stories to hide behind, rather than to reveal truth.
This last year has been rough for a few reasons and I’d be lying if I said it hadn’t affected me. But, that’s not what I want to talk about. Nobody truly has it easy.
What I want to talk about is my turbulent mind.
My turbulent mind is a minefield. Mostly it has 20 tv sets on, playing everything from apocalypse, death, injury, to marriage, homemaking and happiness, to what colour pants do you think they’re wearing to wondering if people see in different colours, to feeling sexy to feeling repulsive, to feeling I am everything, to feeling I am nothing. All at the same time. I know, right?
I rarely know what I am thinking until I say it or write it. If I go without saying or writing anything for a length of time my mounting confusion turns to frustration and I wholeheartedly want to self combust. With this in mind, escapism has become important to me.
Due to this years events it has taken a darker turn. The tv sets are now playing documentaries about how shit I am, how I am doomed to failure, how everyone really hates me and doesn’t have the balls to say. When I walk down the street my mind tells me all the terrible things passerby’s minds are thinking about me. I worry about everything and although I have developed the facility to know that this is all bullshit, I still can’t turn it off.
I frequently do things then spend the rest of the day over-analysing why I could have done it better, how I’ve inadvertently offended someone, how I shouldn’t have eaten all of that, how it’s getting worse, how I don’t understand how I’m meant to stop this. I try to do things that I know are good for me, then lose half an hour staring into space, playing out a future life I’ll never lead, imagining a life of someone I’ve never even met; upsetting myself over remembering terrible things in even more terrible detail.
My current cycle and almost weekly battle is to: Push myself. Achieve. Self sabotage. Collapse. Start over.
I seek solace in the fact every day I can start over. I tell myself it’ll be ok, I will make it better, it’s not that bad. I am just about to finish my first year of Uni, I have landed a job I love for the summer, I have started work on a novel; I am not being slack. So why do I keep telling myself that it’s not good enough?
I have lived with this since birth. When I do have spells of happiness I am infectiously happy. When I am around people I engage with I am distracted enough from my mind to be comfortable. My biggest issue is when I’m on my own and sometimes I need to be, but that’s when my mind is at it’s worst. As a result I’ve formed several relationships over the years that have all failed. I have been engaged 3 times and have never married. Contrary to my opinion at the times, the failures have been my fault as much as my ex-partners and I’m sorry to all of you for that.
Friends have told me that I need to learn to be happy with myself, that I don’t need a partner. I agree completely, but having someone close to me is bliss, it’s when I’m at my most content. Learning to be happy with yourself isn’t always easy.
Why don’t I talk to people about this much? Because why should I bleat on about how shitty I feel when I’ve got a roof over my head and food in my belly? It’s much easier to put on a smile and enjoy people’s company and it makes me happy too. So if you ask if I’m alright and I say yes, please don’t wonder if I am or just saying it, because that’s my shit and my choice: if I want to talk about it, or just forget about it that day.
Or perhaps I can be brave and write about it and reach out to see who’s with me on this one. My turbulent mind. My blessing and my curse. My best and my worst.