Playing With Fire

I nearly burned myself again yesterday.

On purpose I mean, to get that twisted release that comes from binding yourself too tightly for too long until you explode in a senseless torrent of vile self-hatred leaving you with the need to die immediately. But for whatever great or awful reason, like you haven’t fed the guinea pig today or the kids are sleeping in the next room, you just cant right now.

You can’t swallow that bottle of pills you’ve been hoarding or stab yourself in the jugular with that broken ball point pen that’s been lying on the fucking floor since Saturday (CAN’T SOMEONE ELSE THROW THAT FUCKING THING IN THE BIN!?) Nope, deaths off the table so you need to find some other method of release, so you initiate a sequence of hard-core punishments on yourself for still having the nerve to exist in any way you can.

Of course, there are a whole lotta healthy ways to get a release, go for a run, scream into a pillow or have big fat orgasm… But old habits die hard and the fireplace and I? Well, we have a history.

I sat there looking at it as it danced for me with its eerie 2 in the morning glow, my chest was bubbling with intensity, my heart beating in my throat and my brain overloaded with a million words and images and things I forgot to do, things I might forget to do and that supressed grief that flares itself back into my conscious at the most inopportune of moments.

Crushing sadness at the dream I killed, fear for the future, disgust at the humongous hole that this has bored into my deepest self and confusion about the ability of day time me to just gloss over it all like it never happened and pretend pick up where I left off five years ago.

Like nothing ever happened. Like being diagnosed with mental illness, having suicide attempts and experiencing pure unbridled enlightenment never happened. Like I didn’t happen.

Throwing every life lesson we ever learned tossed aside like a piece of rubbish. Like Super Ted.

God the start of that kiddy cartoon made me bawl when I was little, probably should have been some sort of indicator of what would become of my mental health…

Thoughts still swirl around my steaming brain, I’m playing with fire sitting there, thinking this way, watching the embers fizz and spit their glowing sparkling whispers begging me to touch them.

Then my kid got up and startled me out of my ‘urge to burn’. Instead I went back to bed and tossed and turned marinading in my self-loathing trying to shake off the intensity without getting up again or waking my husband. I know he wants to help me at times like these but he’s tired and stressed and the last thing he needs right now is to be worrying about the likes of my pathetic anxieties.

I think the reason I feel so stuck right now is that I am absolutely caught up in the ‘anger’ stage of my waves of old grief and I haven’t been able to realise, or admit it to myself that I’m hurt and angry. I don’t want to be angry, I didn’t have a right to feel angry so I needed to squash the rage down with any other emotion I could possibly pile on top of it, self-pity included.

But I’ve come to a realisation that maybe to get through this I need to feel my feelings. So, Hell Yes I’m angry. I’m so fucking angry that I want to stomp and scream and cry like a 2yr old who’s dropped her icecream.

I feel like I’d finally discovered the meaning of my life and then entrapped by manic stupidity but it felt like out of the blue at the time, I got kicked to the ground, pissed on, discredited and humiliated for what was essentially a mistake. Every now and then when I start to finally feel safe and peek back up at the world through the gaps in my fingers, something small triggers me and I get kicked again. Hard. But this time, I am the one doing most of the kicking.


I’m done torturing myself, I’m done blaming myself, burning myself and pretending not to be angry. I’m also done ignoring and suppressing that little nagging voice quiety whispering “maybe this isn’t entirely your fault?”

Because you know what? What if it isn’t entirely my fault? What if it was a misunderstanding and shit happens? Just like it was 15years ago, and even some of the two thousand other times that didn’t impact my life quite so heavily. I need to stop letting mistakes or misunderstandings like these define me.

I tell people I don’t hold a grudge, but boy can I hold a self-imposed guilt trip like a champion. I don’t want to play the victim anymore, I wanna play the hero.

Right now I’m faking life everyday, dressing up and putting on a show for the world and then coming home and taking my seething core of built up emotions out on the kids. Tick… tick… BOOM!

I saw my GP the other day to pick up an ongoing referral with intentions of being honest about my impending breakdown and reoccurrence of regular suicidal ideation, I walked into her office after a morning where all the trucks on the road looked like opportunities, the first words out of her mouth were “Wow you are looking really well! Great to see!” I had my hair and make up done and was smartly dressed because I was on the way into the office. I didn’t have the heart or the capacity to tell her that I actually feel overwhelmed with 1000 stresses, particularly that I have not only let my authentic self-down but I’ve sent it on a poorly built rocket launcher to the moon and that I am absolutely not going to be able to hold it together much longer.

Unfortunately it looks like I picked the wrong profession. I should have become an actor.

So, I simply said “thank you” to my GP, asked for the referral and left. I looked “great” she would either not believe me, get upset for not picking up on it, or… I don’t know, but basically after that I felt stupid and couldn’t say anything. Doctors, if your reading, of course it’s nice to compliment a person but please don’t assume how someone with mental health issues is feeling just by looking at them.

Okay, I will have to leave this here, I’m at work and I can’t concentrate because real life keeps interrupting me, besides, I have a false image to uphold.

4 Comments on “Playing With Fire

  1. The looking well thing is a tough one. That’s what we want people to think, isn’t it, when we put on our mask. We just often forget to take off the mask when speaking with the people who really need to see how we are really doing.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yep, that is absolutely true! In this case I hadn’t even said anything other than “hello” yet, but I guess hair & make up we’re done because I was going in to work straight after so, you know… Frankly when I’m at the not getting out of bed or showering stage I’m also not leaving the house to go to the doctor. My psychiatrist sees right through it though, she can read my emotional state immediately no matter what I’m wearing, even before I say hi 😂


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