Having previously used the above image in this post as well as two before that, it’s become clear I should never have it far from my finger tips.
It’s applicable for the simple fact that it illustrates what apparently is a fairly common emotion or if you will, reaction in and/or to my reality.
I apologize for my vagueness on Monday, but for the first time ever, I find myself up against a struggle that I neither can, or want to detail. Besides, even if I could, it’s far too complex to cover here anyway. One thing I can say for certain is that I’ll pull up my britches as I always do, and try to figure out some way or another to navigate it, and hopefully will emerge from the other side less battered than when I started. The fact of the matter is I’m currently in the fight of my life against my own conditioning, how I’m wired, how I’ve taught myself to respond to adversity, and desperately trying not to bear the weight of it all because I’m a man, and men are supposed to respond in this way or that. It’s all bullshit, and I need help. This is a tide that’s been stemmed for decades, and the proverbial dam can no longer hold it back.
That’s the curious thing about loss, heartbreak, and so on. It can consume a person, because it’s far too easy to succumb to depression than to tread water, ask for help, and fight for survival.
To that end, I’ve treaded water for longer than any one person should have to, and starting now, will advocate for my own mental wellness because I just simply will not and cannot continue with this directive.
And to think- This whole rolling boulder regained its current momentum with Sean’s observation of not everything I love having to come with a side of suffering.
How simple, yet sublime.
I’ll be honest with you folks. I don’t like myself very much… I mean, I don’t dislike myself enough to rid the world of me, but I ‘m coming to the rapid conclusion that I don’t like myself enough to truly feel as though I’m deserving of anything good. The love of a sincerely beautiful partner, an incredibly nurturing community of friends, a safe and secure roof over my head… Did those things happen because I worked for them, or have navigated the world these 48 years committed to not being a shitty person? Perhaps. Am I worthy of these gifts? I don’t believe that I am, but I’m trying with every fiber of my being to correct my perspective and trajectory, because if I don’t, I don’t think I’ll survive.
I don’t want to bore this site’s readership with the gory details of my personal life, but I reflected on a thing a few days ago. In the time that I’ve been standing here at this electronic pulpit, I’ve watched people get married, and divorced, and have children, and lose children. I’ve watched people discover their own terminal illness and heal, and also die. I’ve watched families grow and shrink, and to a degree, I’ve honored these exchanges by sharing both my own victories, and defeats.
People were understanding when I reduced the number of weekly posts in an attempt to narrow my aperture. Over the last couple of years, the outpouring of support during times of adversity whether it was illness, injury, Buddy dying, or what have you, have been overwhelming. I truly feel appreciated. Do I feel worthy, or deserving? I don’t, but having recognized this, I hope is at least a small step forward.
I don’t expect insight, or advice in response to this post, so please don’t feel compelled. If you happen to be picking up what I’m laying down and wanna give a holler, that is a-ok as well. I simply wanted to express that I feel as though I’m a proper train wreck these days, the wheels have just about completely come off the cart, and I honestly don’t know when I’m going to feel normal again. Perhaps for the time being, the All Hail The Black Market web project will become a receptacle for my mania, which I can’t imagine would be a fun read for anybody who wasn’t a complete sadist, but then again, misery loves company so perhaps I’ll find an entirely new audience.
The upshot of all of this I suppose is to 1) vent, 2) quiet the voices in my head, 3) let anyone who spends time here know that I’m not dead yet, but am in a battle against internal forces that are relentless in telling me I might be better off that way. I’m bent and determined to get through this, but one thing I can promise is that it’s not going to be pretty.