Is This My Quarter-Life Crisis?
So, I think I’ve come to a bit of a “crossroads”.
But I hate the genre of “self-help” as you now know if you did not already, and there does not seem to be any “road” (nor a cross, <giggle> ). Rather the landscape before me looks like someone photoshopped my days using the “dissolve” function, full blast.
I think that for many, many years – a decade, to be precise – I was a willing participant in a series of “serious”/”long-term” relationships that were incredibly toxic. My co-participants were men – and I’m not even attracted to men that way (which I now, at 27, finally get, though I have no idea how to ask a woman on a date ) – who, to varying degrees and in various ways, had some “serious” issues, such as, though certainly not limited to, drug addiction, misogyny, untreated severe mental illness, and rage – indeed, strip away all bias regarding things these men did or did not do to me and/or my family and friends during the course of our respective relationships and these men had something in common other than dating me: they were deeply disturbed. No way around it.
I do not think I at all on purpose chose disturbed men, unless on some unconscious level. This allowed me to do something though, something that was my life support, to analogize, something that cannot be said in one word. It allowed me to be almost entirely consumed with reacting to and surviving a series of crises, whether I was “taking care of him”, “trying to change him”, or “helping him”, my mind was constantly concerned with making it through the day or week or month amidst a little earthquake, a “situation”, and one that you do not want your employer or professor to know about, though at times revealing my messy “personal life” to the people in other spheres of my life was necessary (often marking the beginning of the end of a job or registration in a class or a friendship). However you choose to frame it, my life was one pretty predictable phone call away from a “family emergency”. There was always something on my mind, and this allowed another something, less unpleasant but more complicated (to understate quite dramatically), to never be on my mind.
I was able to completely ignore his girlfriend.
Now, a decade older than seventeen, a degree later, a cross-country move after, here I sit.
And I don’t know what to do with a very nice life. Since my hysterectomy, pain is no longer hanging around to distract me from me, either.
I think the reason I became depressed so severely that I stopped functioning last summer had something to do with this – a different kind of pain replaced the screaming in my abdomen, not because I missed my uterus or the potential ability to conceive, I just became incredibly disillusioned with the world as I looked at it undistracted, and it took a near-death experience (" href="http://www.practiceofmadness.com/2011/12/cat-caused-aunt-drive-cliff/">the car accident) to shock me “sane” (at least functional …and basically content with my immediate circumstance, though there are of course things that I hate about society, I will not allow them to own me! ).
I had even stopped writing for the first time since I was able to use a damn pen. Look at the gap at the number of posts I made, here on this blog, last summer compared with other months – use the “ARCHIVES BY MONTH” widget on the right hand side near the top of the page – one last July. And I bet it was a guilty “filler” post. Let me check. Oh, wrong! But depressing and jade[d] as the earrings I could not drag my butt a block down to sit in the sun on a blanket with to pay for my existence. And so wrong in its simple conclusion. No, I was not able to shake it off by signing up for “Les Be Friends” on meetup.com, though the few times I did drag my ass[ets] out the door I met some lovely people. They were not depressed, though, so what could I talk about with them and what could I really bring to the group, a walking corpse? That’s no fun for anyone. I remember when my old TV was stolen at the beginning of August. My position did not change. I lay on the couch staring at the wall while my magick garden was turning to dust. The thought of listening to music made me want to die like everything else, but this time I knew I couldn’t kill myself (which of course made me want to die, made me wish I had terminal, stage four cancer or end-stage anything) and that made it hurt in a whole new way.
Then, after two months of being treated like I did have end-stage something by my Aunt, who even doled out my pills for me, while I slept sixteen hours a day, cried for two, smoked pot, hated myself for gaining forty pounds, hated myself for caring, hated mirrors and clothing nonetheless, and hoped I would not be asked to go on a walk, I found myself mid-air, staring in the non-existent eye, and I did not want to go. And my life did not flash before my eyes for the next seconds that were each a minute long, during which I braced myself to be impaled with some feature of the environment coming through the windshield and said, “Oh my God.” My last words damn well were not going to be “Oh my God”. Not that I had time to think that, but really. I did not want my story to be over and it was not because of or for any other person. We rolled over a cliff but stopped rolling just before the treeline so something never came through the windshield, and when I realized that I could shimmy my slightly pudgy self out of the wreck, I felt something strong for the first time that whole crappy year: relief. Relief to be alive.
It certainly was not for my Aunt; I made the conscious choice to run away from the smoking remains of the rented van that contained her, actually thinking of my young age and the years that I had yet in front of me in comparison to those that lay behind her, Goddess forbid. It was the future that flashed before me, the great empty expanse of my future. Staying alive was more important than finding something sharp for her to cut herself out of the blows-up-in-movie-wreck of. My kitty, my baby, meowing at the top of the cliff, became my focus. But for a good 60 seconds or so it was just me.
And I don’t know what to do with her.
I guess I do a little bit. I decorated my apartment when I came home from my very unsuccessful trip “home” for Christmas – one I never would have made had I not been in that crash, and one I will never make again as that “home” resembles the remains of that rental van. I really, really like my apartment. There is no one else to say what should go where or what colour the towels should be. I really am fond of my little life with my kitty, so naturally I’m terrified of losing it – the shelter and my cat. Sometimes I unlock my door, open it, and look for an eviction notice. And I rushed my kitty to the emergency pet hospital after she ate a crumb of garbage that contained bleach and pills (I know, I know, I will never put pills in the garbage again). But so far, so good.
So what is it that I’m complaining about? I guess I’m not complaining, but I am observing a woman that has not had a device with only music that she likes (do they all make you put it on your iPod, too? What’s up with that, just for good measure? Or were all three men that controlling? ) – no death metal or gangsta rap or slit-my-wrists-for-me-please in between artists I like – since she was a sixteen year-old girl and blasted it louder than I would ever play it now unless I was really drunk, while I put on my uniform and got ready to drive to high school with my dad and sister, after asking my grandma not to make my bed for me, but she never listened. Yes, my bed is unmade as I type. No, I did not make it for the photograph. I just forget sometimes. And I keep absolutely absurd hours.
The sixteen year-old girl doesn’t quite know what to do with the twenty-seven year-old woman all of the time.