There’s a wolf on the counter and she’s singing a song,
I caught her with the corner of my eye.
She was hiding in the open in an alternate dimension,
From the moment I was conscious of love.
I know she wanted to be found by the smile on her face,
She’s been waiting to be seen her whole life.
I’m in line.
Signing my name after yours.
Happily humming a tune I wrote for her.
I tap my finger on the table slowly learn to breathe,
I only want to hear her sing along with me.
Or write a song about her mind when she receives,
The information of how I’ve changed molecularly.
One person can alter the meaning of an entire story,
Even if she can’t completely erase the suffering.
If she knew.
The amount my darkness fades.
When I hear the melodies she has made.
When I was a teenager I had few friends, so I clung too tightly to the ones I had. One kid I might have called my best friend, wasn’t much of a friend. We were young and selfish. I think it’s fair to say I wasn’t much better and not many people were. Just imagine back when you were a teenager. When you fell for someone, I can guess you weren’t entirely considerate to those around you. But over the course of a year, our friendship appeared more one sided than I would have wanted to admit. I needed him much more than he needed me, in that, he didn’t need me at all. Maybe I was entertaining enough to be kept around, but that was it. On the other hand, I needed him to feel less insane, because I truly felt separate from the world. It was a horrifying thing to feel as a kid and naturally I thought other people would help fix it. I think I was right, and the right people would have connected me to reality again, but unfortunately I didn’t find the right people, or many people at all for that matter. Instead of getting reacquainted with the human race that went to my school, I felt less and less like them. (Not in a cool, hip way. I didn’t feel different exactly. It was that I didn’t feel equal or entirely the same species. As if my brain was broken in a way that made me unable to make how they lived, not desirable, but recognizable.) I wanted, more than anything, to be able to just resemble how other people interacted.
That’s what I was hoping to get out of my friendship. But rather than improving, I got worse. Actual growth was something I had to figure out on my own, rather than hiding effort behind being simply and mindlessly busy. Because when the dust would settle from whatever adventure I was on, I was left with me. And I wasn’t fun to deal with.
I hated that friend for a few years after we stopped talking. I couldn’t help but think I was taken advantage of when I was vulnerable and weak and synonyms. But I gave him too much credit. He wasn’t malicious or clever. He was a kid trying to get to where he wanted to go without paying much attention to whatever else was happening. He wasn’t responsible for how my mind worked.
It was still for the best that I got out of there.
I followed the wrong boy,
When I was a teen.
Passed grocery stores and gas stations,
Through the dangerous part of a safe town.
I thought I was living,
By following a story.
He was tall and blonde,
Containing a certainty that I lacked,
To a degree I was convinced it was what I needed.
Until I learned he was boring.
A cliche version of a human.
While I couldn’t sleep,
Or speak to a stranger,
Or pick my eyes from off the ground.
He became hollow.
I could be smaller than I wanted.
And ripped apart by more than him.
It hurt worse to grow.
With the prevalence of depression and anxiety, or at least the words if not the diseases, it’s hard to talk about what it feels like to have anxiety. Without fail the first question I get when I say I have/had anxiety is, “why?” Fairly straightforward, if vague, question that reveals a complete lack of understanding. Nothing causes my anxiety. It just is. Like Rilo Kiley.
But that goes into what it feels like to have anxiety, not what it feels like to be anxious. We’re all often anxious or stressed. Life is like that. It consistently throws issues in your face. You either deal with them or let them fester and deal with something a lot worse in a few years. However, most of those stressors aren’t “will I wake up tomorrow?” That’s a question I ask myself more often than I’d like to admit. (I don’t want to admit it because it’s a bummer and embarrassing not to be able to control your thoughts.) And, unfortunately for all those fans of the live every day like it’s your last platitude, believing this day might be your last constricts you to accomplish less than you’d like. As Adam Smith so smartly wrote a billion years ago, knowing of a personal tragedy that will happen tomorrow will result in a sleepless night. (He used the thought to discuss something completely different, and, arguably, more insightful and useful.) Worrying about continuing to live (not by any action or inaction, simply nature) is overwhelming. And though I tend to agree with Nietzsche when he said “He who has a why can bear almost any how.” everything becomes muddled when life and death come into play. A will to live does not prevent a heart attack, unless you plan to argue that everyone who has had one had no will to live. A cruel suggestion.
Anyway, I thought I’d talk a minute about my anxiety. I had no goals or point to make. Sorry if that’s disappointing. Sometimes I get down when I hear other people use words. I feel similarly about the use of Asperger’s. In my world, at least, the use has died down over the last couple years, but for a while, a lot of awkward people, typically comedians, would suggest they had Asperger’s. I understood the point, “I’m awkward in social situations, ahhhh.” but it’s a real thing that is being diluted by the repeated use in probably unwarranted situations. I also see a nice thing about hearing words a lot, it takes the sting away from them. The words become a little less taboo even if understanding isn’t necessarily increasing. I kind of appreciate not feeling insane when I say I’m depressed, even if people usually just assume I’m stressed out. My only issue is when it bleeds into the actual study/discussions of these disease/mental health issues. When psychology is overrun by random celebrities or internet celebrities with opinions. Then it becomes dangerous.
I suppose my feelings are complicated. Typical me.
If you want to know what it feels like to live every day like it’s your last, get anxiety.
I’ve said I love you to a hundred girls I’ve never spoken to,
In an effort to express the desire to know someone completely.
I am unable to separate the pull to understand from romance,
The best friend was the lover in every story I read and watched,
I follow in their footsteps to catch a toe of what has been written.
Though I often appear more like I’m flailing,
Unable to touch someone in the way I believe I should.
I’ve witnessed someone reach inside another,
In a way that displays ownership but no need for it,
She owned his attention without ever asking for it,
And she relinquished hers to him at the same time.
As if they switched minds and kept their bodies only slightly discreet.
I’ve watched two people become more,
While all I can do is diminish.
There’s a girl in the park,
There are many,
But one is worth mentioning,
Although I know they all are worth mentioning,
In different ways,
That don’t fit a narrative,
Or a romance.
So I narrow it down to one,
One that embodies a love,
That I’ve read about,
That I’ve been told I want,
So I want it.
I want her.
Who has done nothing I know of,
I want to marry her,
Learn everything about her.
She’s holding a magazine,
A warning sign I ignore.
She has on short shorts,
A worn shade of blue,
Though probably done in a factory,
A manufactured life.
When I see her Whole Foods bag,
I know I’ve made a mistake.
I’ve fallen for the wrong girl at the park,
Assuming there’s a right one,
But it’s too late,
My head can’t catch my heart.
Or my sight.