Journal 1/23/17 – BPD Confession #3.


I have had this taste lingering at the back of my throat for three days now, bile and bitterness. I feel like bile is trying to escape my body, crawling upwards from my stomach and out my throat. The taste is accompanied by an ever present feeling of nausea. I cannot help but wonder if my body is involuntarily responding to the state of the world we live in, sickness being met with sickness. Every now and then, as I write this I feel like my hand almost involuntarily wants to slam against the table. My body contorts in on itself. I clench my fists, and wonder if my soul isn’t so sick of this shit that it’s trying to crawl out of my skin. I feel like a monster. I think about everything and everyone that I would like to leave in destroyed ruins. The list is currently as monumental as my memory is long.

And I wonder why I don’t get invited to parties.

This morning I woke up feeling invisible, in a cold room and ink-vomiting out the most vulnerable shit I can pull out of me into these pages to hurl into the void of anonymity. I mean, isn’t that what we all want, to have our experiences seen and validated? I fancy myself an archivist, documenting my own insignificant experience of being crushed by mental illness as humanity wars, progresses, exploits itself into screaming extinction. This is what I do on my good days. The bad days, I spend in bed not writing, reading, or otherwise nourishing my soul. I spend the bad days torn between the two very distinct opposing forces. On one side of the polarity I feel completely forlorn and alone, like none of the very real sweetness and love I have experienced is has any substance to it. On the other side of that spectrum I spend, I find myself wanting to annihilate the people I love for seemingly being more happy and successful than I feel like I will ever be.

I feel abusive and hate myself into sleep filled days for this one.

Meanwhile, all these positive thinking motherfuckers talk about letting the love in, or accepting the love we think we deserve, or love trumping hate, or whatever. While they are saying this, I’m trying to remember the last time I felt any sustained amount of empathy or softness. I’m pretty sure it was Friday or Saturday when friends who were hurting needed someone. I mostly have felt lost in a swirling labyrinth of my own pain, scarcely able to notice, let alone empathize with anyone else’s. I hate myself for this as well. Gifted as I am, with a detailed memory, I can remember when sentiment and warmth practically overwhelmed me. I have a harder time remembering precisely when they rotted out of me though. I think it might have been somewhere in North Carolina, or maybe Oakland, Maybe even on the 9th Street Bridge in Minneapolis.

This is the fucking season of collective suffering too. I have been trying to remember the last time the world felt this dark for me. Maybe there is a certain privilege in that, not noticing how dire the situation is until it’s choking the life out of you. I know that is one of the big critiques I’ve heard of the anti-Trump mobilization that is currently underway; that too many of us refused to acknowledge the clear and present danger many marginalized communities have been in for a long time. I am not saying I woke up on the morning of November 9th and suddenly realized that I lived in the belly of a racist, imperialist, and misogynist horror show. I’m just saying I can’t remember the last time I saw so many people around me so hurting, and so scared.

That pain and fear is crushing me. So I stay in my room with the same two Joy Division records playing over and over, and replaying old memories over and over. My current favorites are “Times you mistreated the people you love most of all that you want to remember forever and punish yourself with.”. I compose beautiful and vulnerable apology letters that I might never send. The sound of a person I loved deeply crying into the phone at the sound of my unforgiving words replays itself over and over in the dark, taunting me, nearly drowning out the music. That phone call was years ago now. Lucky me, I still remember it clear as day. I count my blessings. I’m working on learning the lessons.


Rain City, 1:45 AM

Somehow my friends ended up in a hotel room the next town over tonight. They had been steadily drinking and getting rowdier by the time I showed up. I drove across town and showed up at midnight, sober and ready do my best to get rowdy too.

I mostly sit in the bathroom with my one of my friends and talked about lost love and noble attempts at emotional responsibility. We compare our aging faces in the mirror.

“Are you starting to feel self conscious about the lines in your face too?”

“Yeah, but only in the last year or so.”

We wonder if we gave up too much, or if we held too fast to our rigid ways. I I can’t help but think the walls are closing in on me for a second, or maybe it’s the future crashing down. Maybe it’s the weight of the years. Last night I was on the phone with my best friend. We marveled at how our last cross country road trip was five years ago, and those five years have sort of passed us by in an eye blink. Really though, it was the last ten years.

Back in the hotel room, the kids are wrestling and spitting wine at each other in the next room. My friend wants to take a shower, and I occasionally hand them their drink through the curtain while we talk. I wonder if I feel too old and tired for this kind of thing. The cavalcade of laughter from the next room eases my troubled mind. I feel like I have been in this exact place countless times over the last twenty years.

I love everything too much. It fills my awkward body. The voices in the next room, the faraway friends, the lost loves, the onesI miss just too much. I lament the time we lost to bitterness and quarrel. For tonight, everything is forgotten and forgiven. Every grudge is dropped. I want everyone to be warm and safe just like this.

I feel it all tonight. I guess I feel it all every night, but right now I’m at peace with my roiling thoughts. I’m at peace with all the love and loss. I’m at peace with the nuance and complexities of being a damaged human stuck in a crumbling empire, and on a dying planet.

It’s too late. Life is too short. It’s too fragile.