It’s times like now that I realize how badly I need to get out of here.
It’s times like now that I realize why no one ever does.
There are so few opportunities in this place. There are so few options. There is so little money and so many people looking to take every bit of it you have. The economy here makes it impossible to leave.
I can barely save up anything and I’m not even paying rent. I don’t have kids to support. I can’t fathom how those expenses would add up, make it even harder to get out.
And I NEED to get out. This place is so stifling. So closed-minded. So uncreative. So unfulfilling. I need to be somewhere where I can create things. Where I can write and paint and design. Where I can have control over my own life. Where I can work with amazing people and make amazing things. Where I can constantly be both astounding and astounded. I NEED this. I need people that think I’m brilliant. I need people that are brilliant in their own rights. I need to be challenged intellectually and creatively. I need people to tell me to, “Do it anyway,” even when I don’t want to. Even when I think I can’t. I need people to push me. I need to be able to push other people.
I need something — ANYTHING —that’s different than this.
So I don’t know if you guys remember these bracelets. I know I posted them here before. A few years ago I got really into making embroidery floss bracelets. (Most people call them friendship bracelets.) I made a bunch for myself and my friends. I ended up with a whole stack on my wrist at one point, and because I didn’t have another way to close them, I just superglued the knot that finished them off. These, I thought, weren’t coming off my wrist until they broke from wear and fell off.
Recently, I decided I didn’t want that anymore. I took these bracelets, some of which I had been wearing for years, some of which represented very important things to me, and I cut them off. I didn’t have the heart to throw them away, so I’ve kept them in a glass jar along with some other odds and ends.
It’s so odd to look at my wrists, now, and not see these colors. I don’t know how I feel about them being gone. I feel like it represents the closing of a chapter for me, but the thing is, I don’t think a new chapter has begun in its place.
I feel like I’m stuck somewhere between things. I feel like, maybe, if I hadn’t gotten rid of these bracelets, these pieces of me, I wouldn’t feel this way.
I think that I realized just now how long it’s been since I have actually felt something besides alone and miserable and unaccomplished. Even now, in the midst of this realization, this is how I feel. This is what the mixologist of hormones inside my cerebral cortex is concocting. Maybe it’s impossible to feel anything but this way.
I think dissociation, unattached-ness, is most of it. I don’t feel like I’m part of anything anymore. I’m not sure that I ever really did. Not a group of friends, not part of a team at work, not a social club, not a fandom, not even a subset of unattached people like writers, or artists, or doctors, or daughters. I don’t feel like an anything. I think this should be scary, but it’s not. And it’s the not-scary part that’s terrifying. Or at least I think it should be.
And I’m sitting here now and crying, but it’s not sad. It’s not exhausted or overwhelmed. It’s just… Crying. It’s just a thing my eyes do. And it stops as quickly as it starts. There aren’t sobs or choking that comes with it. It’s just tears. It’s crying because I think I should be.
This is why when my therapist asks me if I cry, I tell her no. I think that crying has to be attached to something. This isn’t.
It’s the same with laughing. And with everything. I laugh because I know I should. When someone makes a joke at work. When I read something I know should be funny. Most of the time it isn’t, I just laugh anyway.
I try to feel the way I think I should. I try to be happy for my expectant coworker. I try to be angry that someone is saying something terrible behind another person’s back. I try to be excited in those first few seconds of the concert when the first low, bone-shuddering notes bellow from the subwoofers. I try to be all of these things, but I can’t.
Most of the time, if there is a feeling, it’s fed up, or irritated, but mostly it’s tired and in pain. Physical feelings are easier than emotional ones. I am always tired, and there is always some part of me that hurts. Lately it has been my shoulders and my neck and all of the muscles attached to my spine. I believe those aches are tension. Today my throat is sore and I believe I may have strep.
I try to listen to people when they offer me advice. I try to accept that the girl I happen to be working with wants me to go back to school because she knows I don’t belong in this dead-end job. I try to accept that people really do think I have a talent for making words fit together in an appealing way. I try to accept that people think I’m a genuinely good person despite all this. It’s hard, and most of the time I don’t.
And I’ve toyed with the idea that maybe I want to feel this way. Maybe I want to be miserable and alone and maybe I’m just scared of being happy. Maybe. I’m not sure. But regardless of how I want to feel, no one ever seems to understand, or want to accept, the way I really do feel.
Especially my family. They think that I should want to be out making friends and enjoying my life. They think I should want to be in school, bettering myself or paving my way into a decent job. They think I should want to help out and care that my mother may or may not be dying. It’s not that I don’t want to. It’s that I CAN’T. But of course I’m the one that’s wrong and my mom is the one that’s sick. Certainly it couldn’t be the other way around.
And I think, maybe, that is why I ache to leave so often. I think this is why I want to leave this country and never come back. I think I think seeing new things and experiencing foreign culture will eventually land me in a place where I CAN feel the way I want to, or the way I should. I think I think that finding the right people will make me capable of happiness again.
I don’t know if this has ever happened to you, but if it has, please let me know.
The other day I was sitting in bed, watching QVC, a home shopping channel, at some time between 1am and 3am, not really paying much attention as I was beginning to drift off.
Then this ring came on air. It’s not really stunningly gorgeous. It’s not something you take notice of because of the quality of the design, or the stone, or the setting. It’s kind of an odd piece, really.
It’s by a designer named Barry Cord, and the ring itself is called the Gypsy Spinner. It’s basically a little wagon wheel of sterling silver somehow, magically, attached to a split-shank ring, and topped with a little gemstone. (In my case, garnet.) The wheel is set in such a way that it has the capacity to spin.
Within seconds of seeing this thing, I knew I had to own it, so I bought it. I got the shipping confirmation today.
But I didn’t buy it because it was pretty. I didn’t buy it because of the designer. I bought it because I felt like it belonged with me. Like it was part of me.
Never before have I felt such a deep, utter, animal need for any item, decoration, or possession. And I cannot explain it.
The sad moment when you realize how alone you actually are. No one ever messages you on Facebook first or texts you first or anything. So it gets to the point where you don’t want to put in the effort with people who don’t put in any effort for you, so you end up spending your life at home, never going anywhere.