Purgatory Words

I’ve been in purgatory since mid-March.

And I still am. But I found a little hole in the wall to deliver a few words through.

What does that even mean?

It means, I’ve been voiceless. That’s what I mean by purgatory. No fire inside, to convert into actions and words. Just dirty slush, caked all over my everything.

My voice is coming back in little bursts. I’ve tried to use those bursts to create momentum. At least three times, I have written messages into this box, and deleted them. Maybe I’ll delete this one too.

It’s difficult to find the most effective words. The words that do my own plight justice, while also respecting people in my life that are to be held in some regard.

It might take me some time to write my way out of this one.

I have built some walls that I’m not used to; walls that prevent easy disclosure of the facts. I’m not quite the open book I have nearly always known myself to be.

(To anyone who thinks, “It’s about time,” I reply, “Yeah, fuck off.”)

Through nearly my entire adult life, I have publicly documented my innermost thoughts and feelings on life. Sometimes I do it to help people feel less alone. Sometimes I do it for myself. At any rate, I doubt I’ll stop any time in this life.

Just a matter of finding the words…

Some of the words are trapped behind heavy emotions like shame, anger, fear, and resentment…

Some words are locked up in corridors of me that I feel too weak to access.

I am going to dig this out of myself somehow. Approach at your own risk. This could get bloody. You might want to wear a poncho or something.

I may turn off the comment function for once.

It’s not that I don’t care what you think. I care too much. I care so much that it interferes with my ability to speak about what’s important to me.

Everyone needs to be heard. I haven’t been heard in months, not really. Because I haven’t been talking. Right here, right now, this is my attempt to be heard.

So in March, I got sent to inpatient psychiatric care involuntarily. I was in there for three weeks. I could write at great length about the neglect and mistreatment dealt with by myself and the other patients, but that’s a story for another day.

When I finally left, I was so looped up on drugs that I felt like a completely different person. I was subdued, defeated, quiet, and listless.

Nothing mattered to me anymore. Literally, nothing. I could have woke up with a gun to my head, and I would have said, “Oh, that’s interesting,” if I could be bothered to say anything at all.

Of course, that is problematic for someone with my ambitions.

My aftercare at Community Mental Health was horrendously unhelpful and patronizing.

I became severely depressed and have remained in a state of deep social anxiety for the past couple of months.

Wordless. Actionless. Bored by everything, but with a restless aversion to boredom.

In a lot of ways, it seemed the only way forward was to have conversations that no part of me was ready to have. So, I stagnated, while my truth incubated within.

Thankfully, I have connected with a therapist who has helped me come back into some sanity.

You know, it’s really not that complicated, being there for someone.

Just figure out what’s important to them, and make an effort to understand it. Even if you don’t understand, let them know that they are validated in their thoughts and feelings.

That right there is the secret to soothing some fierce inner beasts.

I wish my family and I could do the same. It seems too much to ask at this point. The gaps seem too large, and I am enmeshed with my family in ways that prevent me from living my life without stepping on other people’s toes.

I can’t just say, “I am a grown ass man, I can do what I want,” because for the past couple years I’ve relied on my mom and stepdad for shelter and lately, food.

If I could make it on my own, things would be different.

But the more depressed I have become, the more stuck I feel.

Unable to live in the way that supports my greatest good.

Unable to get to a point in which I can truly live on my own terms.

So, I’ve been working on finding a way out of this rut.

All these words, and I still didn’t get very specific.

I guess that’s a defense mechanism.

I almost just deleted the whole thing.

But I think this silence has gone on enough.

Originally published at Andrew L. Hicks.