Sunday, April 21, 2013

Battling Demons

The other night I had a dream where I prepared to battle a demon. I gathered my weapons and allies, facing hard decisions and different paths I could take to reach the snowy mountaintop where the demon awaited me. The journey strengthened me, yes, but also her. And when I woke, I realized two things. One, this would make a good video game (at least I thought so). Two, this was a good analogy for my current struggles. 

"Let's focus on the negative,"
Is how my brain is wired to live.
I am not funny, lovely, or cool.
I'm not even smart; no, I'm just a fool.
A fool with a terrible crushing disease--
Disease of the mind, one forgotten with ease.
You don't know you hurt me, and I don't want you to
Because I think I'm bigger than that. So do you.

But if I think I'm funny, you're serious,
And if I am sincere, it's hilarious!
So what if I write? Fascination
With such things is just recreation.
Real careers, made of more solid skills,
Are what I will learn. So what if it kills?
"That's what life's all about: making money
Is what brings people happiness, honey."

I'm 'pretty,' but not someone he'd ask to dance.
He'll always pick someone else, given the chance.
Because naturally, there's nothing wrong with my face,
Since you praise me with statements of beauty and grace.
Yet I still watch his eyes as they scorn me,
Scolding my hair and the clothes that adorn me.
"You need all the exercise that you can get,"
But no matter how much I burn off, I don't fit.

I have this strange thing they call social anxiety
Where I curl up and shut down and lose all propriety.
She either ignores me or treats me as one
Who would like nothing more than to ruin her fun.
I don't mean what I say, or say what I mean.
And I seem like I'm angry or ill, when this thing
That's inside me is yelling, "Get out and go home!
They don't love you anyway! You're all alone!"

Then the words on my tongue make the ugliest sounds:
Awkward, inelegant, too quiet, too loud.
(Words are so fickle on days like today;
It's only on paper I can make them obey.)
And I say something stupid about how I feel,
But it sounds like a joke, so you laugh. No big deal.
You've forgotten about this disease in my mind.
I don't look how I feel so I must be just fine.

When I tell you, "I'm fighting my demons tonight,"
Remember that I am not feeling all right.
And it isn't your fault, not usually.
My brain tries to keep me from being free.
Little things that you do often keep me from falling,
Bringing me little gifts or simply calling
To ask what I'm doing, to show me you care.
That's all I need--to know that you're there.


PS. ...About that social anxiety I mentioned? If you believe in prayer, pray for me, but I don't want to discuss my issues in person. Seriously. So don't ask.

1 comment:

  1. Sorry you're struggling right now! I don't pray, but I'll definitely think positive thoughts for you. Hang in there!