The post-festive period is often a time of steep come-down for many people.
For me, lately, it’s been peaks and valleys.
If my life has been a journey, it’s been a rough one.
But that’s made me all the more determined to continue on, to make it through to the end – wherever the end may be.
For all the times I’ve struggled to climb a steep, rocky slope, I’ve slipped down an equally treacherous abyss.
For all the times I’ve realised just how worth living life is, how wonderful and amazing this world is and how much I love those people I am blessed to know, I have been equally as hopelessly lost in a black well of depression. Unable to see but a star in the sky – but I hang on to that star, because it reminds me that there is a way out. And it reminds me to dream. Because dream I do, and dreaming is how I convinced myself I had a reason to live when I was in my rock bottom places.
My dreams used to be high as the sky – there were no limits. I was going to be a dancer, a writer, a veterinarian, a biochemist, an artist.. there truly were no barriers. If I wished to achieve something deeply enough, I worked my guts out at it and I got there. My childhood and adolescent years were heady with the heights of my own successes. I rarely knew failure. I was labelled ‘gifted and talented’.
The hell of home paled when I threw myself into that world.
But there comes a time when the good can no longer block out the effects of the bad, and the nightmare overcame the pleasantness. I no longer was able to become lost in the dreams I worked towards, no longer was able to concentrate, I was only partly there any more. I was dissociated.
Part of me ran away. Flew away. (Still wants to, all the time, today.)
Here I am now. I have incredible difficulty living in the present.
It’s scary to be me. I’m 35. I have nothing to show for it. No hopes. No dreams. They all were lost. Ravaged by what happened. By illness and trauma.
I have never had a job. Never will have a career. My brain is incapable of study. Cannot remember even the basics of stuff I need to know when I need it. Cannot read and enjoy books. Cannot concentrate to paint. Cannot hold a conversaton sometimes.
I will never have a partner or husband, never have children of my own. Never have grandchildren or nephews or nieces. Never play Santa or the Easter Bunny, bake birthday cakes, pick out pretty dresses or play in the garden with my kids. Never take them to school and coach them through their homework. Never be frazzled by tantrums and tears.
I cannot enjoy ballet, cannot enjoy volunteer work, because I spend days flooded with anxiety about just leaving home, getting there, being there, and coming home again. I’m wracked with fear about just doing every day things. I still do them. But enjoy them?
My brain is mush, my heart shattered, my self broken, my body wracked with pain. What is there to live for?
I have no future.
The best I can hope for is to survive. I will never heal completely from the traumas, because there are no options to help me with it here in Australia beyond what I’ve accessed already, and try as I have to help myself, I’ve gotten nowhere.
As a child, I was prisoner of my family.
As an adult, I’m prisoner of my mind. Of my past.
Is it any wonder that all I want is to fly far, far away?
(But I won’t give up. I never have. I never will.)