Friday, March 5, 2010

The very high price of getting out more . . .

Today started out innocently enough. I was up and out of bed before noon, mainly because I managed to get to bed before four in the morning. So after commenting on a friends blog I decided to get somethings done that I needed daylight for. Nothing amazing, nothing complex, nothing really involved. Three things I wanted to get done. I wanted to head to the lumber yard to get a couple of pieces of wood for a project I'm working on, go to the grocery store and pick up a few things, and fill the jumper with gas.

Well two out of three isn't bad I guess. Didn't make it to get the gas. Why? Because by the time I made it out of the super market I was toast. To be honest I cut shopping short because I was in trouble before I finished shopping. I went to a different store than I usually did because it was closer to where the lumber yard was.

So I handled the lumber yard well enough. Thankfully there were only two guys there, and they were both really nice and very helpful. So I got out of there for under ten bucks which I really appreciate. Lumber in the Jumper and I was on my way to Biggs. There was one I'd never been to a short distance up the road from the lumber yard, and I thought to save myself time and energy by going there instead of fighting traffic to get to the one a couple of towns over. Logic was on my side, and being that it was close to rush hour, I didn't want to fight the traffic.

Normally I don't shop so early in the day, because crowded stores threaten to overwhelm me. All the noise, strangers, hustle and bustle makes me skittish to say the least at the best of times. This was not them, the best of times that is. Not only was it crowded but it was a store I've never been to, and laid out close to what I was used to, but slightly off. So I had to find what I was looking for, not so good because it added stress. Long story short, by the time I was done ... well that's just it, I wasn't finished looking for groceries, but I was rapidly reaching overload and panic was starting to threaten. So faced with the imperative to check out that instant, or short out completely, I forced myself to checkout and leave, making it to the car and locking myself inside just before the tears and sobbing took me.

I still had to get gas before I could get home and collapse. Frankly that was not going to happen. So I started heading for home and got about halfway there before it all hit me again, harder this time. Once again, as I have so many times in the last almost ten years, I pulled off into the nearest parking lot, shut down the Jumper and lost it again.

I've said it before, and will no doubt occasion to say it again, I hate being broken. I'm sick and tired of being sick and tired.

So I sat there crying tears of pain, shame, and a touch of terror until I could compose myself and head home. It wasn't fun. But when folks try to impress upon me the importance of getting out more I don't think they really appreciate what that can mean. Being back in that place where I am faced with the terrifying task of healing from a life inflicted on me, or ending the pain, tends to compromise my objectivity. Living with this much pain is not something I'd recommend for anyone. Right now I'm steeling myself with the knowledge I'm being ornery and not giving in to the darkness even as more of the world does.

But sometimes the pain rises up and threatens to take me. Because I'm not as strong as I used to be. Though really I don't know that anyone real could ever be "that strong" and survive. I know I didn't.

But now, getting out isn't the carefree affair it once was. Getting out comes with the threat, the very real possibility that something will trigger a flashback, will hit a nerve and leave me destroyed and alone again. Fighting with strength I still don't know how I have as my poor abused heart and mind play tricks on me.

Sometimes there's a very high price to be paid for getting out.

When I was young, and heard of people who shut themselves in and away from the world, staying at home for days, weeks on end, I could never understand why. Now? I can explain why because I live it. Yes, I spend days, weeks even "trapped" in my own little corner of time and space. On purpose. Because sometimes the single best way to defend against the harsh realities of an insane world is to avoid them.

2 comments:

I'd love for you to share what's on your heart or mind after reading this.