It’s the end of the year again. Everyone’s happily jotting down their happiest memories, what made 2017 worthwhile, but me? I don’t even know anymore.
My 2017 started out a mess, but I was able to make something meaningful out of it. I lost the ability to walk, and nearly died in 2016, but I focused on recovery. My passions, my work. Rather than push them away, I allowed my loved ones to support me. Rather than give up, I reflected on my mistakes and learned from the most devastating ones. Most importantly, I cut ties wherever necessary, stripped down the toxins that have long since plagued my existence — people and habits alike. I made difficult choices and learned to let go of things that weren’t meant for me. I grew remarkably fast as a result, and my 2017 continued on a wildly promising route; I got a job, I found my niche, I made new friends and stopped having depressive or manic episodes. The voices disappeared. The seizures have been more frequent than ever, but at least I was less distressed than I’d ever been before.
But that was the rest of my year. Regrettably, I couldn’t end 2017 on a positive note, or maybe life just didn’t want to let me. It started promising, but ended the same as every other year: uncertain, heartbreaking, agonizing, and filled with emptiness and despair. Once again I end the year questioning my existence and the role I play in the lives of everyone I love. Am I truly significant, or just a pity project others can’t help being drawn to? Why did I come to this world only to continually suffer in this manner? Is it fair? Is it reasonable? Why did they even pick me, the obvious runt of the litter? The smallest and weakest, the least likely to survive? Am I really worth all this trouble? All this love? Or am I just pestering everyone with my burdensome existence? Troubling them with a responsibility they don’t even need? Do I deserve being left behind? Am I destined to stay on this path? To live alone, die alone? Am I weighing everyone down by keeping them close to me? Should I push them away for their own good? Is it my choice to make, or theirs? I am surrounded by people but feel remarkably alone in the dark, and the loneliness suffocates me. I crave companionship and cherish my loved ones more than life itself, but my fears, post-traumas, and constant reality check keep me from believing they’re here to stay. 2017 might have allowed me to temporarily elude fate, or my circumstances, but how my year inevitably concluded proves no one can truly escape fate. You can run and hide, change how you look however you want, perhaps get better, but you can never escape your cage, or the failing piece of shit body you were born in that most people turn away from.
Even as I write, I can see the void staring back at me. I can feel a shroud trailing me, telling me to count down, to prepare, that “it’s time.” That “it’s over.” “This will be your last new year.” I don’t know what to believe anymore. That small speck of sanity in my mind says fuck no, but the rest of me can feel the tracks ending, gradually, slowly careening to a stop. “The end of the line.” The smell of death both calms and suffocates me.
I challenge 2018 to prove all that wrong. To rewrite those thoughts, those voices, telling me I have nowhere else I belong in anymore but the void. I like to think that the darkness is a labyrinth, that no matter how convoluted the design, there’s always an exit. Please show me the way out. The cloak and shadow aside, I do want to be here by the end of 2018, with all my loved ones and all the awesome people that make my life still worth living.
“Happy” new year.
(overdue share from Facebook; originally posted on January 1, 2018)