Friday, April 1, 2011

October 1998

*Written in 2005, this is an account of the the events that led to The Crew being seen and recognized. Diagnosis wouldn't be official for several months.*

Things aren't getting any better. I'm pretty sure they never will. I've met with a group from church... the Pastor, Pat and Mona who is trained as a lay counselor. We're supposed to get together again soon. It's supposed to help but so far is only making things worse. It's the first time I've told these people about so much of my past and the believe me. They've never known someone who cuts or hurts herself the way I do but they weren't revolted. It seems like trying to bail a sinking boat with a thimble. It's too little, too late.

I tried to write out some of my history for the next meeting. It's long and hardly complete. Maybe if they see the list and realize what they're dealing with they'll know it's a losing battle. I'm just waiting for someone to tell me I'm too messed up to help and I like being this way. I know they will... it happens without fail every time. I'm too messed up to help and everyone just gives up eventually. I wish they'd do it and get it over with. It's better than just waiting like this. I hate myself for hoping anyway. All the time I hear the echos of how it's always been. "You're just trying to get attention. It's all manipulation. You don't want to get better."

I haven't eaten in days. I know I'm taking something in but can't remember my last meal. I'm hungry but not. It hurts to eat. I started purging again in August after we got back from visiting my parents. I've been obsessing about my weight and I tell myself the purging is just to get rid of the baby weight from pregnancy with John. It's a quick fix and I know it's unhealthy but I don't care. In my head I know it's an effort to stuff down the feelings and feel in control but the lie is cozier. It makes me feel better and right now, nothing else matters. It's the only thing I know how to do that leaves no outside marks or scars. I'm hurting myself and I know it but don't see another choice. I watch the scale. It dips a little lower each day and I tell myself something has been accomplished. It's stupid but it's something. While everything else falls down around me, while my world crumbles and my mind disintegrates again, at least I have this one thing I can control. It's the only thing keeping me alive and it's not helping enough anymore.

***

One of the phones is missing. Stupid, stupid, stupid. I was talking to Charlie and when we were done, I set the phone on the hood of the can and forgot about it. It must have flown off the van when I went out later and I can't find it anywhere. I've driven all over the neighborhood and it's gone. Charlie is so mad. He's so mad. I'm sorry. I'm sorry. I screwed up again. It's all I do. Why can't I do anything right? I'm crying again and now he's frustrated. He can't talk to me when I'm like this and he hangs up.

Slump to the floor.
Rocking.
Shaking.
Can't think.

I almost drowned when I was twelve. It was an accident. The other kids were so busy wrestling with each other they didn't realize I was being held under. In the last seconds before the lifeguard pulled me up, I thought I would die there, lungs burning for breath, hopelessly fighting a tangle of legs and hands only inches from the surface. I feel like that now.

Call Pat... call the pastor. Take me to the hospital. Something. Anything. I want to kill myself over a stupid telephone. What is WRONG with me? My husband has a right to be mad but I'm freaking out. Please, please help. I can't do this anymore. Lock me up. I quit.

Pastor R tells me to call my doctor. I can't. Please I don't want to. All he wants to do is put me on drugs anyway. I call the doctor. He calls the pharmacy with a prescription. I'm tired of panicking. Tired of being afraid. I'll take a pill of that will make it stop. Pastor calls Charlie. Pastor's wife picks up the girls and brings them home.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Go outside for a cigarette. It's the only way to be able to take a deep breath. It happens before I even realize it. I've pulled up my sleeve and burned my arm. I can't stop it but don't want to either. For the first time in hours, I feel relief. It's like the panic is draining away... it's easier to just watch. As long as the cinders are touching my skin, I am not afraid. I've come to the surface, if only for a moment and I can breathe again.