Monday, January 24, 2011

snow up to my tits

It's so cold here. I can hear the skin on my hands cracking from moisture deprivation as I stand outside trying to channel the tobacco smoke in my lungs to trigger my brain into thinking it's really smoke from my burning skin as I slowly sink into a crater of molten lava. It works, for about two seconds and then I have to stamp out the cigarette and run back inside before the spit freezes inside my mouth and ice crystals form in the liquid around my eyes, sever my retina and blind me forever.

Maybe I'm exaggerating. But fuck, it's cold here.

I am trying to get my life back together. I never said that before, because it was never "together". There was no getting "back", it was just getting there. I never said I want to get back to Hawaii, I just want to get to Hawaii. My brain has always felt that way... other people have regular lives and though there is always some kind of turmoil or disturbance, they can always say... "Well, everything will be fine once we get back to normal." I never got to normal in the first place, please send directions.

But that changed this last year. Well, this last summer. I never got to normal, but I got it together. That's a lie too, I never got "it" together, but I got my brain in a place that was livable. I got a smidge, a dash, a morsel of happiness and now all I want is to get back there. Some form of natural ecstasy invaded me and as soon as I recognized I felt it, put a name to it, and explored the feeling - poof! no more. I was afraid it would go away at the time, so terrified and yet that did not stop me from feeling it. The fear did not ruin the happiness, I had never experienced happiness that strong... to outweigh my fears, that little hamster in my head furiously spinning the wheel removing all joy from even the simplest things... even he wasn't able to weaken that bubble at the top of my chest. That feeling you're trying to hold in, wide-eyed, because you're afraid it will just come up without warning and you will start laughing or start to speak unintelligibly ... you can not describe this feeling.

Now it's gone, and my brain is desperately searching for meaning in everything, searching for a trigger that might bring back a moment of that. It's the way I felt when my first cat ran away, standing outside in the cold calling and calling until I was hoarse and pleading, please come back to me. Pathetic but not willing to give up. My emotions wait it out in purgatory, occasionally exploding into frenzied fireworks - trying to provoke some kind of response from the outside world. And they burst out voilently and without cause, firing off memories and surfacing my most extreme sensitivities - then finally collapsing back in on themselves and I am left with all of the muscles in my face - slack, staring at everything and seeing nothing... wondering where it came from and why I only feel numbness in the times between combustion.

The cruelty of a cliche. My friend constantly tells me, "But aren't you glad you know that feeling exists now? Isn't it better to love and lose than never love at all?"

In a word... no. Nothing is satisfying now. Nothing quenches like it used to. When you've never been happy, small things feel big. Fake things feel real. You can convince yourself that you're happy when you're not. You can squeeze your emotions together and force them to come out when you need to feel human. You can pretend there is a future and in it you can be happy. But when it's over? When you know there is something more. When you have proof in your soul that there is something far greater, your mind can not accept the present. It refuses to acknowledge that this is good enough, that this life will satisfy.

Christians are so fond of heaven and all of the joys and endless happiness available there, but this life would not be bearable if they had visited the eternal paradise they dream of. They could not come back here to this place, to their regular life on earth and tolerate the pain and frustration a human life must endure.

That is how my heart feels. It has found new land, a different way to experience life and then the blood flow was cut off, and the old things... the old comforts and haunts can not satiate that desire any more.

So I will keep chasing that feeling. My brain will keep investigating the cause, searching for the spark that once lit the fire. My emotions will keep misfiring, attempting to cue something deep inside that might, even for a moment, create the illusion of that swell, and after failure... return to numbness.

Fuck, it's cold here.