The Gift You Have
Most choose to end with this, so instead I will begin with what I feel is the most pertinent information contained herein:
1 (800) 273-8255 is the number of the National Suicide Prevention Hotline. All calls are confidential and experts are there, 24/7, for this service at no charge. Do not hesitate to make the call if you need to. It’s going to be okay.
I think it is likely pretty obvious at this point, but this post is going to deal with some pretty graphic material related to self-inflicted violence and suicide. I felt it best to leave a warning at this point for those who might find it difficult, painful, or otherwise traumatizing to read. It was neither my intent nor the intent of the Love Yourself Foundation to foster an environment that would make its readers feel uncomfortable, and yet I felt that this topic needed to be discussed in this way. This wasn’t any easier to write than it will be for you to read.
Sometimes I just can’t sleep.
A man walks alone as
A writer no one reads
Stands alone in his dreams
Across highways of the eternal night…
Sometimes I will stay awake for days at a time trying to find the right words to set down, as if I couldn’t take them back the second they are typed or written out. Sometimes it is not words, but answers to all of life’s problems that keep me awake, with every brain cell scrambling to find a truth I may have hidden even from myself.
Why didn’t anyone read that post? Why can’t I just lose the weight once and for all? Why did that piece get rejected? Why did they all go out without me? Why can’t I write like him? Why am I like this?
Sometimes there doesn’t have to be a reason.
Sometimes I just can’t sleep.
Reading the most recent LYF newsletter, I came to the realization that Spring Cleaning wasn’t always about cleaning your physical space, but it was about cleansing your mind and soul of any negativity pervading it.
I never really thought about it that way, but it makes sense. Why not find a way to clean your spirits of toxicity that may be pervading your thoughts instead of just cleaning your room?
Unfortunately, this is one I still struggle with, and likely always will.
There are any number of unhealthy coping mechanisms, and for one reason or another, I stumble into these and relish in them much sooner than I do in finding something more productive. I think the writer in me enjoys these dark spaces, as at the time they feel like good fuel for creativity, but like most people, I often discover that it was better to have described the storm after it has passed as opposed to hastily scrambling notes in the rain. Yet just as dark clouds blot out the sky above, a similar fog will bog the mind, leading it to believe any number of things that simply are not true.
One day, as the sun is shining, this looks like happiness, breathing in the clear desert air and feeling good for being fortunate enough to experience it. On the occasional dark day, even if the sun is shining, these thoughts might change from happiness to sorrow, from content to misery. Work that would’ve been lauded by the creative muses are now called worthless by some other voice that isn’t always there.
Stephen King once wrote “Monsters are real. And ghosts are real too. They live inside us, and sometimes they win.”
I feel a pang of jealousy just typing those words, knowing that I haven’t written something half so good here or anywhere else. Yet on a happier day I know that my writing will never sound as good to me as it might to someone else. I will never read my own writing the same way that someone else will, and yet in those dark moments, I find myself questioning a compliment when it comes, or worse, if no one acknowledges it, I find my inner turmoil even more intense.