Saturday, 25 May 2013

Please Don't Leave Me

It came this morning. I've waited for it for so long, thought about it, worried about it, watched other people do it and I myself have been as dry as paper. I came to the brink of emotion that I've been hovering around for months and this morning I slipped over.

I finally cried. Here's the thing; I feel in some ways worse than before. Me all over really; I wait for something I think will help, pin all my hopes on it, and when I get it feel desolate and appalled because it's failed to change my life and now I'm even more desperate than before.

I can't believe how bad I feel. I mean yesterday the Homeless charity said they were pleased with me and are taking me on, I should feel happy, successful. God knows how I'd feel if they'd rejected me. Maybe I wouldn't feel anything because I'd be at the bottom of a whole loads of sleeping pills. No, I know that last statement's not true because I don't have the guts to do that. I'm too much of a failure for anything that drastic and definitive.

I suppose saying I feel 'bad' is kind of a redundant explanation. It's not an explanation at all, so I'll try and elaborate.

I think it all stemmed from when one of my friends cancelled on me. It was a fairly legitimate excuse at the time and I didn't doubt her much, but now I'm not so sure. Scratch that last bit; after hours of rumination I am now convinced that was the prelude to complete exclusion- a long way from 'not so sure'. If confess honestly about these assumptions with anyone I tend to nearly ALWAYS hastily wind up with 'but I guess I'm just being paranoid'. THAT'S SUCH A LIE! I absolutely do not think I am being paranoid. I mean think about it; if you can say 'I am being paranoid' and truly believe it, well then surely you're not actually being paranoid because you can't BE paranoid and know that is what you're being. Paranoia is a complete conviction that your beliefs, how ever ludicrous to others, are the absolute, irrevocable reality.

Just that one cancellation is enough to send me whirling off into the ether of abandonment. Since she cancelled I've come from feeling a little disappointment right through the spectrum to where I am now. And where I am now is a feeling of utter ALONENESS. I feel empty and hopeless. I am also filled with terror that this is a prelude to my life. My biggest fear is being lonely. I used to think it was a fear of being alone, but then I revised that because 'alone' is just a thing, it has no emotion attached to it; it is just a description. A tree in a field can be alone. A car in a car park can be alone. People can be alone. People can be alone and happy. I am not one of those people. I am terrified of loneliness. I don't ever want to feel that abandonment. I've been abandoned before in my life, when I was at that dangerously soft stage of development. The stage where things hit you and make holes in you that don't find until later, when you're grown up and realise you're leaking out of those punctures.

To me loneliness has so may other complications attached to it. To be lonely would demonstrate a whole host of my other failings to myself. If I feel lonely I feel I have caused it by failing to do something or BE something. It could be because I didn't make enough effort with my friends. It could be that I never met new friends because I was socially stunted. It could be because I tried to socialise but bored people so much they gave me up as a bad job. I suppose the worst would be feeling lonely and having no friends and not actually knowing why. That would be a complete curve ball, a complete loss of control and hope. There's no way forward, no way to try and repair something if you've no idea what went wrong. I think that would be the point I finally topped myself; it would seem the only logical conclusion. I would consider myself socially broken, and like a car that refuses to respond to any mechanic's expertise, I would toss myself out of circulation. Give myself up for spare parts.

Facebook has a lot to answer for. I do think it should be listed under the banner of 'self harm' sometimes. I say this in all seriousness because although I do use it in happy, normal ways, I will also turn to it in my periods of self flagellation. If I am feeling a failure and a lonely, friendless pile of mush I will log in. I will then proceed to demonstrate to myself how many comments and posts and photos other people have. It's like my brain is saying 'Just look, look at them, you massive social snail! How many comments has SHE got, yup, and how many have YOU got, 2, 1 or NONE? huh? When was the last picture YOU had taken in a nightclub....oh yeah like a DECADE ago. You might as well give up now. You're shit.' I think that's on a parallel with a blade, a blunt and rusty one at that, don't you?

I am doubly scared of these feelings of loneliness because last time they struck me in any acute, long lasting fashion, it was a precursor to a period of massive anxiety. That is a time in my life I NEVER want to go back to. I couldn't face it again, I think I'd break down. Actually no; breaking down would be the fortunate conclusion. The more terrifying prospect is that I'd carry on existing in some cruel contortion, not breaking down and losing my cognition, but having full cognition of how awful my life was getting and feeling helpless to stop the spiral.

I think I need some help.


  1. Hi Katie,

    A few days ago I had to take a short flight between cities. Seated beside me was a young woman of about my age. She was very nervous about flying; grabbed the seat handles when the plane made ascent, took deep breaths with every plane bump and, for much of the flight, sat hunched with her head between her legs. I think something else was going on in her life but I am not certain. She might’ve been crying.

    Anyway, I thought about trying to distract her from her fear by talking to her, but I didn’t want her to think I was hitting on her and so I ended up not saying anything. Maybe that’s okay --- she has the right to her privacy, after all, and might’ve just told me to mind my own business --- but in my heart I feel I should’ve said something.

    Why am I telling you this? Well … I have come across this post by chance --- a goodreads link, interestingly --- and feel inclined to say what I should’ve to my seatmate on the plane: If you need someone to talk to, I can listen.

    Please allow me to add that I find your prose very affecting. You model a vulnerability that I admire. I think a lot of people, likely including myself, hide something of who we are out of fear that, if exposed, the people who say they love us will no longer. I hope that, in opening yourself to this risk --- as you have in this post and others --- you experience a truer sort of love from those around you.

    - A Stranger

  2. Thank you so much firstly for reading this and secondly for your beautiful post. I think to a degree we all want people to see that we are vulnerable because we hope people will care for us, love us. It's taking a leap of faith for anyone to reveal their vulnerability because there is such a fear of rejection when we have revealed our most delicate issues. Thank you for your post xxx

  3. It strikes me that you might find the poet Stevie Smith worth making acquaintance (if you haven't already).

    Here is a short post intended to introduce the unfamiliar:

    As an aside, Sylvia Plath once wrote to Stevie requesting to meet and, in that letter, described herself as a "desperate Smith-addict". :)


  4. Hi kelly,

    thanks so much for the introduction, Im reading some of her poems now, and indeed i find them very meaningful.

    Iv recently read the bell jar by Plath and ADORED it :)