For the last three and a half months
I have been reluctant to plan anything
in the future
because the future felt so uncertain.
Will I be well enough?
Will I even still be here?
The future felt overwhelming
so I hid away from it
and tried to live in the present –
and ended up fixating on the past.
But this is keeping me stuck
when I need to keep moving forwards
so here I am,
making plans for November
in a promise to myself
to keep going.
This was supposed to be a place
for me to heal
and yet here I am,
still fixating on the boys
who have broken my heart.
I need to focus on myself,
and move on
rather than staying in the past,
no matter how comfortable it is.
I am stood,
staring at myself in the mirror.
Everyone believes they are immune
to the difficulties of life.
We see global tragedies on the news
and shrug it off,
telling ourselves that it’ll never happen to us.
Everyone believes this,
until life comes along
and holds a knife to your throat
and pushes you towards the edge
and forces you to look at the harsh truth.
No one is out of reach of the whims of fortune.
Everyone is vulnerable to suffering,
and those predisposed to it
will always be hit the hardest.
I used to think that I was invincible,
that I had already been through enough already
and the universe would give me a break this time.
But this was never going to be the case
and I was a fool to think otherwise.
And now I am stood here,
and I no longer recognise my reflection.
My soft edges that I have battled to maintain
in a world of cruelty
have been whittled away by anger and nausea
and I am left sharp and abrasive.
I always said that
suffering is not a competition.
My situation does not diminish
other people’s emotions
but at some point I need to be selfish
because my situation is pretty bad right now
and I need other people to listen to me
and listen exactly to what I am saying
because I am not trying to talk sideways right now.
There is a word used to describe me
that is accurate,
but it still hurts to hear.
I am needy.
I just love talking to people,
and I love talking to people I love.
As a teenager,
I would stay up to 4 in the morning
talking to someone,
fall asleep for two hours
then wake up at 6 for school
and continue the conversation
with no hesitation.
Sometimes I am too needy.
Interaction with those I hold dearest
is a drug to me
and I cannot seem to quit
and I have to fight off my urges to bother people
when they clearly don’t want to talk to me –
but is that true
or is that what I’m telling myself
to stop myself from being too needy
and annoying them more?
It’s a constant juggle in my brain
to satisfy my needs
without pissing off my friends.
Let them text first,
I tell myself.
But then here I am
stuck waiting for my phone to buzz.
The worst part of having long distance friendships
is that I can see them suffering
and I cannot physically do anything to help.
I love my Toby dearly
and all I want is to be able
to hold him tight
and reassure him that he is one tough cookie
and he will be okay.
But he is five thousand miles away
so all I can do is remind him
that there is someone in his corner
all the way across the sea.
I hate flying.
The hour to the Netherlands had me in tears
and clutching my cat plush
like my life depended on it –
and yet here I am,
considering a fourteen hour flight,
just so I can do something
for the person who has always been there for me.
During my time in mental health services,
I have met many specialists;
“catholic care” (the red flag was right in the name)
and now I can add cancer to that list.
“Why do you think
you have a tendency to self-destruct?”
she asks, sat opposite me
in an uncomfortably clinical office.
I promised a friend I would
be on my best behaviour
but that didn’t last long
as I just smiled and said
that I am bored of living,
words dipped in saccharine.
and leans back in her chair,
head tilting slightly.
of wasted conversation later
and I am finally allowed to leave.
“I am bored of living
so I’m trying to make things
more interesting, I guess.
I suppose I get a weird kick
out of hurting people.
The more they care…
the more I push back.
I want people to give up on me
so they won’t miss me if I die.”
The words leave my mouth
and I leave the hospital.