Today is a day of deep, deep depression, fatigue, and chronic pain so endless that the abyss is right in my face grinning. Everything is a Cheshire cat.
I have been forming this post in my head since yesterday morning, when I woke up with nothing working properly, with only bits of my brain and body truly functional, and I had to put on a mask and a whole costume, I had to grip my spears and even a sword for dear life, I had to smile and pretend to shine because I refused to worry anyone, because I didn't want to sink further.
And people tend to get tired of me constantly talking about my pains and feelings, because whoa, can't I talk about happy things, things that maybe don't involve medicine and coping mechanisms and feelings?
But here is the Big Thing: So many people feel this way. So many dear friends will read this and understand and perhaps comment and know they have someone to help them stand and fight.
And that is the other Big Thing. We do need help. We do need to stand with each other and fight. On the internet and in life, there are people who will say we are faking, that we are pill addicts, that we are attention whores, that we are crazy.
I will stand up and say, No, I am not faking, nor a pill addict, nor do I desire attention. But crazy? Yes. Yes, I am crazy. Yes, I need help. I am getting help. Medications. Therapy. Exercise. Nutrition. Supplements. Herbs. Vitamins. Holistics. I am not afraid to tell you what is happening, because you need to hear it, you who would mock and tease and bully and tell me to "Just slap a Band-Aid on it and walk it off, just exercise and feel better, just eat this food for two weeks without any drugs, just smile a lot, oh hey, I felt sad yesterday and then I got over it, I know how you feel, I wrenched my ankle last week and wrapped it up and now I feel better, I know how you feel, maybe you're just pretending, why don't you just get better? Quit talking about how much you hurt, everybody hurts, it could be worse."
It could be worse, yes oh yes. Ohhh, sweethearts, it could be so much worse. Yes.
Here, let us try something: You can have my body for a while. You can feel every single feeling I feel, think every thought I think, know every pain I know. See how it feels. No? You can't? Really? Are you sure? Still no? Oh, dear. Well, then, I suppose we will have to stop associating, even if we have only been talking via a forum, a community, a social network, a bus stop, a party, via phone, via web video, in a store, in a house. Oh, well. I thought maybe you had enough compassion, or, you know, empathy. I guess I won't find out. But you know what? If it ever happens to you - and part of me hopes it won't and part of me hopes it will - I shall still stand with you even if you hurt me, because warriors stand up.
There are beautiful, wonderful, incredible, amazing, extraordinary, fantastic people who are being slowly devastated, crippled, destroyed by their own bodies' various systems, for no true reason other than they just happen to live in those bodies. Some of them think about how horrible they are, how they are useless, worthless, pointless, draining, a burden to everyone around them. I feel that way quite a bit. There are some who want to harm themselves, some who want to kill themselves. I cannot do that, but I admit I have imagined it. If I truly wanted to harm myself, I would stop taking my medications. I would let all the pain crash over me in one single tsunami with wave after wave, while I spasm and shake and seize and sob and scream and shiver because I refuse to give myself relief, because I refuse to make it stop. But I will not do that. I can not do that. It would destroy everyone who loves me, whom I love. And I know that. That is another Big Thing.
To everyone reading this who feels the same way: I love you. You are loved. You will always be loved. You are extraordinary. You are amazing. You are fantastic. You are beautiful in so many ways. I love you. I will stand up with you. I will give you spears, swords, shields. I will show you how to scream a battle cry loud enough to make the gods hear you. I will show you how to launch into battle with these monsters. We will never win the war. We will often retreat covered in blood and darkness, growling and licking our wounds and crouching together to patch up each other's wounds.
I will take you by the hand and lead you outside. We will stare up at the sky and say, "Oh, this is such a beautiful sky." The sky may not look beautiful. The sky may be full of dark storm clouds and we cannot see the sun. But just because there is a storm does not mean that the sky has gone away. The clouds and the dark will move, and we will see the bright, bright sky, all shades of blue, and we will see the sun, gazing upon us like the eye of a god, giving us light and warmth and strength. We cannot look directly at the sun, but we can look at the sky and call it beautiful, and we can look at each other, covered in war wounds, and say we are beautiful. We are. We are beautiful.
I love you.
Oh, and I wanted to add: I took my painkillers and anti-anxiety drugs today, of course. They are helping, of course. I got exercise, I meditated deeply, I spoke with a therapist, I ate healthful happy foods, I did all the things people suggest one does in these situations. I am very very slowly working my way back to a steady and stable mood, but it will take a while - many people don't understand that it takes a while. That is yet another Big Thing. "Why isn't your treatment working yet? What is wrong with you? Shouldn't you be feeling better by now? Why are you still like this?"
It is tiring, and it is irritating. But I am still going to share, and speak, and stand, and stay strong. Because you asked. Because you need to know. Because I love you.