These days I spend a great deal of time being a shoulder of support for my various friends, most of whom have varying degrees of suffering in their lives at any given time, as do we all. And I do my utmost to reassure them that they are not alone, that things will be fine, that they do not have to fall alone into a cold abyss. I try to be a sort of social support, if you will– which is hard, as I’m inherently introverted by nature.
Even as I try to help my friends, I think back to my own youth. I didn’t have proper internet, and my friendships, such as they were, tended to remain wholly in the context of school. As an only child, and unable to relate to my guardian, I was alone.
Alone, and beset by the same fears and plagues I see in my friends and others. Feelings of loneliness, unworthiness, and stress. Of having no place in the world, no real connection to it, of being someone who moved through life without really living it.
I went through high school and university with those feelings, and no one to discuss them with. There were cold, lonely, painful nights. Nights where the darkness of the soul was tangible, and real, and wanted nothing more than to suffocate me in its shadow.
There were times I wanted to end it, but I decided I would not, as a big middle finger to the world which was causing me grief. I would not let it win. But there were times, before that realisation, when I had wanted to do nothing more than pack it all in.
I honestly don’t know how I survived. When I see, from the outside, the horrors that eat away at people’s souls, pushing them to the edge of self-destruction, I really don’t understand how I managed to stay sane and hang on. Am I sane? Maybe not.
Maybe my dogged desire to keep on going is a form of madness? I don’t know. My family has always been a bit mad.
Sometimes I feel that my survival is an anomaly– that I have no right to be this outwardly stable and upright– able to be someone else’s anchor when in truth, I was– and perhaps still am in some ways– just as badly broken as those I’m trying to help.
But then again maybe that’s what keeps me going. Get enough broken pieces or people together and you make a whole.
I have more friends now, more understanding, more dare I say wisdom, and I’m not just living for me, anymore, or to spite the cosmos.
My friends are precious and I want to give them the hand I never had. I want to be there for them as long as I can.
Having successfully invaded both America and Canada from her home base in Windsor, Paisley has become horribly corrupted by the world. She hates active voice and wishes to god Twitter had an edit button. Dedicated to "creating the greatest 'Ship of them all", she ponders horribly terrible, idiotic things for your amusement.