Thursday, July 25, 2013


"...Sailing takes me away to where I've always heard it could be
Just a dream and the wind to carry me
And soon I will be free..."

-Sailing, Christopher Cross

You want to know what it's really like to be crazy? I'll tell you.

One day, things are are smooth sailing. You're feeling more balanced, you've got a handle on life. You're learning skills & implementing tools to deal with curveballs that life throws at you as to not plummet into the depth of despair. You've sobered up, seeing therapists, trying to make all of the unpolluted, sustaining choices you can make for a "happy" life. You do the best you can keeping in mind that perfect died on the cross, so you don't crucify yourself if you make a mistake. Your friends and family are proud. Your peers at work welcome you back warmly. You run into old friends and they tell you you look great & you feel great. You're finally living like you always fantasized that you might. You start to feel less that you're treading in black, shark-filled waters & I'm swimming towards the lighthouse. You might be able to find a partner! To sustain yourself financially! To get out of bed with hope! To be normal.
Then one day you wake up, and all of the hard work, all of the effort & progress you've made means nothing. There's no catalyst, you've done nothing fallacious. The menacing black waves have come for you and you're drowning again. The lighthouse is gone, the shore a distant memory. You hate yourself. You know your support system & the world would be better off without you. You're wasting their air, their time, their space. They deserve it- you do not. You really don't. They walk on eggshells around you to begin with, don't really trust that you'll ever be well. Nor will you be. It's a chronic condition that neither sobriety, therapy, medication, meditation, prayer nor electrocution to the brain can cure. It worsens with age. You will never be a capable mother, nor partner & this is why you're still alone. It's the reason you don't date men- you fuck them. It wouldn't be fair to (nor do they want to) take you on- unless they have a savior complex which is gross. You live because you have to, not because you want to. You live knowing deep down inside this disease will get you in the end. You live knowing that while life is a struggle & can stink for all of us, your future is one that will be in & out of institutions & rehab centers. Your family & friends will always have the burden of loving you but they want you to go on fighting. You can move cities, change vocations, lose weight, gain weight, change your hair, make new friends, cut ties with bad influences, but the disease follows you like a shadow in the dark.
Then you take your meds. You pray in your own way. You cry, and sometimes you puke. And you hope tomorrow the waters will be still again, letting you tread water for a little longer.


Marilla Wex said...

Sending you lots of love, Claire. Just. Keep. Swimming.

Anonymous said...

You're not're brave an honest with yourself...I for one wish I had an ounce of your courage...I pray the waters remain calm and still for you.

Anonymous said...

I have felt exactly the same way you have just described. I have hated myself and felt so unlovable then i met this man who i wouldn't ordinarily date because he was GOOD. and I let him love me - it was hard but i let him take care of me. without the saint complex. and things got better. i still take my meds and i have stopped drinking and i still feel bad but after ending up in the clarke after trying to kill myself i can honestly tell you yo will get better!
you will.
and i am a mom now.
there is hope. I promise you.

Christine K. said...

Claire, everyone has days where they feel like they've lost hope and everything is bullshit. You're not alone, and I'm glad that you know that!

Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear that you are struggling again. Hoping for the calm waters for you.

Anonymous said...

you keep saying what im feeling. remember someone out there thinks you are amazing. you breath joy into a room when you enter. I wish you could see that. really see who you are. not just the crap.... ALL of you.
wendy from aim

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