Why is everyone looking at me?

Today I went grocery shopping with Miss 9. Sounds like pretty standard Saturday, except I spent most of the time unsure if she was really with me or not, doubting her presence and intermittently her actual existence at all.

People seem to look at me weirdly an awful lot at the moment and I’m afraid my thoughts are showing somehow. They pretend to talk to each other or on their phones then glance at me, their eyes penetrating my Ora and radiating some sort of ‘knowing’ sarcasm. It feels like they’re on to me, only I don’t know what I’ve done. Has one of the others done something?

Whispers, stares, sniggers. 

I wipe my mouth discretely with the back of my hand, no there’s nothing there, I make a mental check of my outfit, my hair, it all seems appropriate. Is there a kick me sticker on my back? 

Is it my weight? 

No, that’s not it, come on girl get a grip! 

I try and convince myself that it’s not high school anymore as memories of being singled out and shamed in public for my weight by bullies flood back into my mind and suddenly steal my breath.

“Stop it!” A voice inside tells me firmly, “there’s plenty of larger framed people than you in the store you are being ridiculous.”

I know that’s true, but I can’t find a reasonable explanation so I put the biscuits back on the shelf just in case.

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Miss 9 suddenly dances around the corner holding chocolates, “Muum, can we get these?”

“Not today” I reply calmly but internally panicking as I notice someone else looking at me funny, do they maybe think I’m going to try and fatten her up and ruin her life the way I did my own at that age? 

I look down at my trolley, it’s mostly ‘healthy’ if you can forgive the sausages. No, surely that’s not it, kids always ask for lollies and sweets, I glance back up and the man is still giving me a look that screams “WTF is wrong with you you crazy bitch?”

Then it suddenly dawned on me, what if Miss 9 isn’t really here? OMG!! Am I actually talking to myself? I looked for her but she wasn’t there. 

Surely she’d just skipped off somewhere again, why does she have to keep doing that?

I started looking around trying to be discreet while also desperately trying to find proof that she was genuinely there with me. Was her disappearing and reappearing through the aisles and taking things off the shelf was my imagination or actually happening? 

She suddenly reappeared and I hissed at her to stay with the trolley, I needed to be able to see if anyone else was actually spontaneously acknowledging seeing her there with me. 

It felt like rewatching the sixth sense after finding out the twist and desperately searching for plot holes because you were so damn sure Bruce Willis had been communicating with lots of people.

But he hadn’t. How the hell do I know if I have?

Do I even have a daughter?

I got to the point where didn’t want to answer when she spoke to me just in case she wasn’t actually there and I was talking to an empty space, yet I also had to reply because if she’s real then she’s a 9 year old kid, my 9 year old kid and you can’t ignore your own child!

Logic suggested that she was there with me because I wouldn’t have left her at home and I didn’t remember dropping her at Hubby’s work, but then I didn’t really remember anything before suddenly being present at the shop with a 9yr old I know to be my daughter asking me endless questions. 

The world around me was fast fading from dissociation and the overwhelming sensation that I was imagining her.

I silently tried to summon Suzi to help me, I can cope when she’s here, to which I received a vague, distant and kind of exasperated “you’re nearly done” comment. Damn it, why does she keep leaving me alone like this? She must know I can’t do it! She’s supposed to help me, is she just pretending to care but secretly trying to hurt me too? Why do they all hate me?

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I noticed that the checkout lady didn’t smile or acknowledge Miss 9 when I paid. We took the groceries to the car and Miss 9 talked to me as we drove to the workshop, I replied hesitantly but when we got there Hubby talked to her too and asked her if she had fun shopping so I guess she must of been with me after all and I was just being silly. I still cannot quite let go of that nagging feeling, what if Hubby has just been humouring me? Is he real?

What if people see me talking to thin air all the time and just decide it’s better to ignore it than tell me? 

Maybe it was real until the suicide attempt, maybe it was successful, maybe I’m in limbo or some sort of after death eternal dream like state?

I don’t feel like I actually exist, Am I Bruce Willis in this scenario? Frankly, that would be quite helpful if it meant the knowledge of that set me free because I don’t think I want to exist anyway, certainly not like this. I’m standing here looking around the world through the virtual reality lens in my mind-condo in the sketchy time-share ponzy scheme I got roped into without reading the fine print or realising the literal meaning of the term ‘time-share’.

I’m seeing M on Tuesday, but I know I can’t keep doing this.

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Strawberry Bubbles

  • Today I felt elated, my problems of yesterday just magically fell away.
  • Today the colours of the earth shon brightly and vividly just for me.
  • Today I had alcohol.
  • Today I talked too much about personal things I shouldn’t say.
  • Today I spent a lot of money on things I didn’t need and couldn’t afford.
  • Today the universe commanded me to go somewhere and I was frightened by what I saw.
  • Today I drove my car too fast and imagined myself flying into the air through space and time.
  • Today I said everything was perfectly fine because I finally felt real.
  • Today I lied to myself.

🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩🚩

Schrodingers Mind Games

Dear M,

A terrible thought dawned on me once a long time ago and it never quite managed to leave the dusty corners of my mind. It comes back to remind me of its presence at times when doubt begins to cloud my heavy heart. 

What if you aren’t real? 

What if I somehow just made you up?

Am I just staring at a brick wall having a conversation with myself when I think I’m talking to you? How would I ever begin to know the difference?

It’s terrifying.

Although, it’s almost easier to want to believe that than the alternative, that it is I who is not real.

For if I’m not real I can’t trust anything in my mind. People worry about others spying on them, which is surely egocentric foolishness because ultimately we are spying on ourselves, holding our minds hostage both with and from each other. 

We are the God we fear. 

Our own God that is, neither existing or not existing In the locked box of our mind or perhaps it’s more that it’s both at once. Schrodingers God?

Although perhaps by default and definition, if I’m not real then neither are you. 

Maybe only I am real, the entirety of the universe existing purely within my mind. Great philosophers have undoubtedly considered this possibility.

Gods. To all as unto self. 

A million possibilities, combinations of philosophic confusion as infinite as the universe… Perhaps that’s where infinity war got it from, I don’t usually prescribe to the comic worlds yet maybe they actually had a valid point. 

Only the creator of all can destroy themselves. It would be awfully lonely at the top. I imagine they would.

My beautiful friend E showed me how Hannah’s words are so much like your own that it must cast some doubts that you can both exist, at least not in the ways I believed you did. 

For reasons I can’t explain it’s almost easier to believe in the existence of Hannah than the existence of you. Even though logically one would expect that ‘proof’ of your reality is far more attainable than proof of Hannah’s. Hannah knows everything, she shares her wisdom with me in an unconventional manner but I couldn’t, can’t be expected to believe she doesn’t ‘exist’. To you, them, Hannah’s world is hearsay, I even if I did hearsay (hearsaw? Hear hear? there could/ should be a word for that but you know what I mean), it myself.

Hannah seems to know things I don’t, yet you seem to know only what I’ve told you. Not that I’m trying to accuse you of being Devine enough to read my mind the way she can, but sometimes you seem to and it’s so impossible for your presented version of reality that it’s exceptionally confusing.

Neither of you question my perceptions and thst acceptance seems so statistically unlikely, I can’t decide what the game is here, there’s always a motive, a hidden agenda. I am wrong more than I’m right as a general rule so I wonder if that means I’m just projecting some unprocessed imagining of my mother and her nativity onto you both, because if I’m absolutely correct in my anticipatory notions then that also means you must both exist and not exist simultaneously. 

Schrodingers mind games….

I fear that the sessions I have with you are at best evolving in a different context to which I perceive them to and at worst they are simply figments of my overactive imagination.

It’s crippling me, not just those particular thoughts and fears but a cacophony of doubts invading my mind. I am losing my grip, if I ever had it at all. 

I am getting interrupted right now and forgetting my point, children need things, as they do, food doesn’t make itself, although with all the technology we have youd think they could make an app for that – oh right Uber eats. Perhaps Uber chef? Call up and they send a guy out to cook low budget meals for you with what you already have in the pantry? And they definitely need an Uber-Bunnings, who can be bothered going to the hardware store on a busy Saturday? Yes, of course it would come with a sausage sizzle!! If you worked your timing right that could be dinner and a pair of gloves, bucket, lawn mower and paint roller! (Multitasking 101).

Anyway, I was going to ask you something, autocorrect is putting words in my mouth (fingers?) it said “I was going to ask you to die”, which is amusing given that my phone seems to know me a little bit too well boarding on scary as fuck which is a whole other letter, but just for the record the phone was jumping to conclusions and I wasn’t going to say that at all!

Oh God, now I can’t actually remember the reason why I was emailing you, it was vaguely important too not just a stream of my stupid consciousness lol… Damn… nope…. one other thing though, if Hannah is real, why did she go away back then, and if she isn’t real, then the rest aren’t real but why can’t I choose who to take with me? I’m really exhausted from thinking about this but I can’t stop, I don’t want to lose my friends, Suzi disappeared last week and I couldn’t even run the business without her at all! I need her and she left me but she came back for payday thank goodness and fixed all my mistakes. She keeps going away to look after Cal and I get it and I want to be empathetic towards cal and all that but I’m selfish and I really need a break too, I just know if I fix it the one ‘safe’ (god I hate that word) way I know how then she might just go like Hannah did last time and I need her here and I’m scared she’ll just up and disappear for ever. I don’t want to go broke just because Im a baby who can’t suck it up without Suzi mothering me every step of the way! I don’t think I’m ever going to grow up. Maybe that’s the problem, I got stuck in a time loop cause I wasn’t paying attention and everyone else carried on without me.

Sorry. I’ll go now, just feeling weird and needed to vent and I’m out of people I trust to vent to, don’t worry, if you bothered to read it you don’t need to answer this I know your busy.

K

Chameleon

Dear M,

I don’t know when or how this all started, I don’t remember anymore, honestly I don’t know if I ever knew. I just woke up one day and this was my life now. Suddenly I became aware that I had thoughts, the ability to act, receive consequences, feel feelings and uphold so many responsibilities. 

But the truth is I didn’t know how to be this person I supposedly was now, it was overwhelming beyond my capacity at the time and I guess despite many years of attempts to understand the world around me, myself and my place among it better, I still don’t really have much of a clue what’s going on, either inside or outside of my head. 

There is so much noise and there are so many emotions and possibilities contained within a human brain, wondrous and inspiring ideas and beliefs but so many conflicting ones too, love, indifference, fulfilment, loss, excitement, devastation, so many of these contradictions that seem to manifest upon themselves, allowing me to become trapped within the black and white lies that I have told myself over and over again. 

I don’t really remember any other way of thinking, of being, outside of the extremes I mean. Yet to the average bystander I can blend into normality seamlessly. I have a brilliant and subconscious ability to sense my environment and then camouflage into it like a chameleon. Perhaps simultaneously my most helpful and unhelpful trait.

Was my need to blend really born from an innate urge to protect oneself though any means necessary? Perhaps. Or maybe I was simply hiding from the fear of being rejected for being myself.

I know in my heart it is wrong to feel the need to hide in this way, yet I continue to bury my authenticity so we and they are all somehow blinded to the colours of my own personal madness. 

Thoughts circle around and around my mind, questions mostly. Questions regarding competency, morality, reality, what to do next, they frenzy into a vicious whirlpool of quandary. Needless anxieties stemming from what? Nothing? Everything?

So many unexplainable thoughts and perceptions, all of them equally valid and invalid at the same time. I have repeatedly thought and thought and overthought myself into a vicious cycle of confusion, elation and despair. I’m so tired of it.

The further I step back the more clearly I see that there is nothing wrong within the shared reality that surrounds us, nature itself is a balanced form, yin and yang seemlessly merged together, changing form but never changing soul, atomically perfect with no basis for me to embody this snowballing pattern of self destruction and yet here we are. 

Drama upon drama upon never ending drama; all brought upon me, by me. It’s the most disappointing soap opera ever written. And I wrote it.

Just like daytime television all of my problems are really just stories that stem from the depths of my own mind, perceptions of events that have become more and more skewed through the Chinese whispers effect of too much stimulation, too much exposure and too many simultaneous streams of thought competing for the spotlight. Sands in the hourglass.

These perceptions were skewed unintentionally perhaps, but still the fact remains that in the end I have somehow managed to create all of my own problems and form all of my own unhelpful reactions to every last one of these life experiences; all by myself. 

The only thing that was ever stopping me, was me.

I wish I could have seen this roadblock to growth in simple terms for what it was earlier, not focusing so hard on why it was. If I was ever to reroute from the roundabout I have been stuck on for so long, the ‘why’ didn’t matter. 

Finally unmasking the elephant in the room, or the hippo in ‘denial’ should surely free me from the metaphorical tombs of my mind, if it is possible to overcome the embarrassment of falling off the pyramid that is. The path to acceptance is acceptance, but acceptance is a hell of a fucking challenge.

So yes, I needed to see this self imposed roadblock as I see my reflection in a mirror.. although ugly, desperate and frequently unrecognisable, it’s a thing that can be hated on indefinitely and it will never improved, it is something that can only really be changed through active healing, for it will only ever be a representation of my perceived self that is staring back at me, even if that’s not something we want to unanimously acknowledge.

Maybe the takeaway I’m going for here is that I was only ever going to be able to move forward if I got out of my own way which means I guess it’s probably time for me to move on. 

Maybe stepping away physically will finally allow me to move forward emotionally and spiritually too. I used to be pretty good at simply ‘checking out’, maybe it’s time to reclaim it? 

Goodness knows I’ve stolen enough of your time, taken countless government dollars and resources that would have been so much better spent helping someone who really needed help to be helped, not just wasted on someone who is simply treading stagnant waters, unable to see past themselves. 

Please know that I am not searching or fishing for some sort of reassurance by writing this, I don’t want a reply, I am simply acknowledging my own accountability for my past actions, I hope you can believe that I was never intentionally malingering, I passionately hate that it’s possible for me to have been so (even subconsciously) selfish or even manipulative. 

That’s not who I wanted to be, ever. In fact it’s specifically who I didn’t want to be and it fills me with disappointment and genuine shame to realise that was how I was perceived by so many and that that was how I outwardly acted towards people. It’s unacceptable, but sadly not undoable so we must also choose to accept this awareness is part of a spiritual self development process.

This wasn’t supposed to be a pity party, so let me change track and say thank you. Thank you for providing such a supportive nurturing environment for personal growth without ever showing the slightest judgment or annoyance at things that must be ridiculously frustrating to watch. 

Thank you for standing up for what you believe in and using those beliefs to improve countless lives.

I wish you all the best in every aspect of your life, please never stop being you, share your gifts, the world needs many more like you.

Peace.

Day Dreamers Sleeping

I don’t know how to tell the difference between what has actually happened and what was simply dreamt of anymore. Memories of my reality are exactly like those of my dreams and it takes detective work to sift through their feasibility before one can make a determination either way. Even then sometimes it seems impossible to tell.

For example, I may or may not have gotten a speeding fine recently. I have a memory of speeding and seeing a mobile speed van and thinking about how Hubby was going to laugh at me because I’d just been picking on him about one he himself got a few days earlier. I remember thinking that we really couldn’t afford one let alone two fines right now.

But, when I mentioned it to hubby and he asked which road it happened on I realised I don’t remember what road I was on, where I was headed at the time or even which state I was driving in. It feels like it may have just been a dream, yet dissociation leaves most of my proven memories feeling this way too, so now I simply cannot tell anymore, we just have to wait for the fine to turn up or not I guess. 

It’s happening a lot and it’s disconcerting to say the least. Vivid dreams of mundane day to day life or even more sinister dreams of my complicity in various untoward activities evoke the same emotional reactions as I imagine they would if they were actually happening. Full body emotions that I am unable to let go for days, weeks, long after the memories have dissolved. 

Then again, things I assumed were dreams have later sometimes been revealed as actual events and honestly if someone knocked on my door falsely accusing me of something terrible, I myself wouldn’t even be able to be 100% certain that I hadn’t done it. My own mind is gaslighting me and it’s frightening as hell. 

I start getting paranoid just thinking about it, even writing this makes me feel like I’m setting myself up to be implicated in something but I’m forcing myself to write it anyway, to try and prove that my fears aren’t going to come true. Maybe another part of me thinks that I’d deserve it if they did. I hear a helicopter or see flashing lights and I know they’re on to me, ready to lock me up and throw away the key for something I can’t remember doing.

Yet somehow despite all of this mental chaos parts of my compartmentalised brain are keeping up appearances. They function at work, they take care of the kids and somehow I can successfully pretend to be a normal functioning adult even though on the inside I feel like my mind is melting. I just don’t know how much longer I can keep it up.

Elephants

2CE84229-A415-4D2A-ABF8-32892552F44EThe room is crowded. It’s full of elephants.

My aunt has a ridiculously large collection of elephants, and ironically bipolar. Actually in hindsight, those two things are probably linked…

Anyway. What was my point here again? 

Oh yes, elephants. 🐘

My last visit to my psychiatrist was a month ago and it left me somewhat perplexed/ confused. At this moment in time I struggle enormously to remember our whole conversation or for that matter, more than the very last part of it. I do remember that one statement though, it was one made by M and one that has been spiralling through my mind ever since on repeat, attaching itself like a leech to different meanings and different emotions depending on which part of me is thinking about it at the time leaving me bleeding disproportionately. 

The statement was, or words to this effect:

“There is so much going around in your brain right now it’s making you work too hard, but maybe you don’t have to. Maybe if you just acknowledge the elephant in the room (your mind) then you won’t have to work so hard avoiding it.”

Wrote about it in detail here whist annoyed, mildly dissociating and a tad hypomanic, read at your own risk. (You were warned.)

Ok, but what bloody elephant?!

She didn’t, wouldn’t, clarify. Apparently it’s one of those questions I had to figure out for myself in order for it to be useful. Instead it opened a Costco sized can of worms.

At first I was a bit pissed off. Like, I’m paying you $385 an hour to pretend to be my friend, just fucking tell me what the damn elephant is and why it’s here!

So I left the building un-enlightened, walked towards my car and stewed some more about other things she’d said, “acknowledging it doesn’t mean you have to do anything about it, just noticing it and accepting its presence will help”. 

How do you acknowledge something you don’t understand?

So, naturally I started overanalysing it, then all the voices in my head joined in and threw their unsolicited opinions into the mix making me ‘work’ far harder than I had been previously.

Paranoid me considered possibilities of various psychotic delusions and eventually decided that the elephant in the room was that my psych feels like I am just a hypochondriac with absolutely nothing wrong and is just waiting for me to figure it out while letting me slowly pay for her kids private school tuition. Nothing I have felt or experienced is real. 

What if I’m not really bipolar after all? What if I’m just a moody pain in the ass and a fraud who needs to suck up my stupid anxieties and get on with it?

This train of thought left the station for the moon for awhile resulting in Katie writing this lengthy ‘thank you so much for everything, but I can’t see you anymore because I’m wasting your time and the communities resources by going to see you for an imagined problem” letter.*

🎶 Three E-le-phants ba-lan-cing… 🎶 **

There was that other part of me who is desperate for ‘freedom’, she doesn’t believe that our relationship with Hubby is healthy, she doesn’t feel attached to the children or home and keeps threatening to bigger off, and oh yeah, she apparently likes girls. 

To make things even less complicated, she is attracted to our psychiatrist*** and wonders if the elephant in the room is M somehow being aware of that fact.

🎶Step by step on a piece of string…🎶

There is the part that is questioning the very fabric of reality, wondering if our psychiatrist knows far more than we thought about what’s really going on, the fake world, fake universe all illusions, but to what end?

🎶They thought it was such a wonderful stunt…🎶

Maybe M believes I really am psychic after all (not just psycho) and the people in my head are spirits. God knows I’ve believed it at various points. Even though she hasn’t come right out and said it, I know M quite likes the spiritual stuffs, I can tell by her reactions and level of topic comprehension when I’m euphorically hypomanic and getting preachy about such things, and there was that ‘crystal meanings chart’ that fell out of her notebook one time… 

She also knows I have been dealing with an exceptional quantity of ‘synchronicities’ and trying my hardest to deny them. Maybe she thinks I need to roll with those elephants after one of The Others somehow picked up on something personal to her by throwing a random vision at me constantly while I was talking to her****

🎶That they called for an-oth-er… ele-phant.🎶

What about my life, how can I live with all these other versions of myself inside my head with all their conflicting opinions and emotions and feelings? I love my children and husband more than anything, how can I stop the others from exisiting, from ruining everything for me? What if they act on one of their silly impulses? Technically, somehow deep down these also be my own impulses, and that’s even scarier still.

🎶 Four elephants balancing…🎶

Step by step on a piece of fucking trauma inducing wobbly string…

Damn it, Im triggering the shit out of myself right now. There’s already enough shit in my head, do you know how much elephants poop?! You see this song I’ve been non-chalantly weaving through this post is actually a trauma related trigger song. A song that sent me running to hide under my blankets as a small child quivering with fear. I loved watching Playschool but God I hated this song. 

Im amazed I got this far, God knows what possessed me to go down this track. I can feel myself starting to dissociate just writing those incomplete lyrics. This is probably the most fictionally literal elephant in my fucking head of all and I don’t want to understand it. And somehow I didn’t realise it was still lurking around the corner when I started writing this post and that singing started playing in my head and… 

Fuck You Bonita.******

I don’t want to acknowledge it, or notice it, because when I start thinking about it, or writing about it, I get that uncomfortable awful anxious overwhelm seemingly reserved for specific bad memories, my throat starts closing up and I get that awful feeling I can’t understand creeping up into my stomach. That particular elephant that shall not be named, it needs to stay hidden away under its invisibility cloak. I’m not ready yet.

[Continued weeks later…]

Inevitably, my elephants could balance no more and all suddenly fell to the ground into a disheveled sobbing heap of their own shit show, broken limbed and begging for mercy. But as I started to re-read this post realise that it was less a question of what elephant? And more a question of “which elephant?”

All of these topics, feelings, no matter how real or imagined or mine or perceived as those of an arguably imaginary alter ego, are all valid to some degree; because they all occupy a painfully large chunk of my brain space. 

Apologies for being quiet around here for a while, I guess my head was absolutely overrun by the stampeding elephants of my childhood nightmares. Now I realise that I just have to find a way to process them and live with them or at least despite them. Growth takes time. I see M tomorrow, in the meantime I’ll find another childhood song to sing.

 🎶nobody likes me, everybody hates me, guess I’ll go eat worms… 🎶 

Do you have your own elephants to conquer?

🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘🐘

*Didn’t send it. Phew. 

**Non Australians or those Aussies not born in the 80s playing along at home likely won’t understand the elephant song reference – it’s from the popular children’s tv show called Playschool. Most people find it adorable.

***I’m not up for explaining it, at some point I will add a link to a short excerpt from my book here to catch you up…

**** Transference. 100% transference. As discussed by the offending self HERE.

***** This image was ironically actually linked to bloody Playschool! Another synchronicity?

******Sorry Bonita. It’s nothing personal.

Solicitation of the Mind

Do you ever have a conversation with someone and they point something out and you think they’re nuts and then BAM! A while later you have one of those epiphanies that was actually in front of your face the whole time but you were somehow blind to it?

We bitched about one HERE and all I can say is that it has snowballed. Considerably.

Some background…

I fall hard for writers, not just any writers though, I only find myself becoming seduced by authentic wordsmiths who can articulate the inner workings of my mind through their own. The honest ones, the ones that validate me by letting me finally find acceptance of my own life and feelings, acceptance that I have craved from childhood. Those words…

Oh God. They stir my soul like nothing else ever has, they fill my heart with purpose and motivate me to want to change the world!

IMG_9367

They make me feel this way because they are exactly who I want to be, who I authentically am. 

So, I guess this is essentially my fucked up way of trying to love myself. The technical term is probably projection.

I desperately want to talk to my psychiatrist about it and yet I can’t.

You see… there’s an issue with that. Not just that I can’t come forward enough to speak out loud because I know I could write to her. The big problem is that…

I have gone and fucking fallen in love with her. 

She isn’t even a writer! Well she could be, she has a way with words but I wouldn’t actually know, she’s extremely good at keeping her private life private and she’s very professional.

The technical term for my feelings here is transference. I am aware of that, I mean, I do all the talking in the relationship, I know absolutely nothing about her really. Yes, she is very beautiful and incredibly kind, but mostly she gives me the same validation I feel from those captivating wordsmiths, and (for a meagre $350 an hour) she listens to the authentic ‘us’, acknowledges me and appears to believe in me. 

Perhaps pychology is just a seductive solicitation of the mind, in a way. 

I can intellectually understand exactly why these feelings are emerging inside me, and I can equally comprehend that they have no real substance or potential to lead to anything more than feelings. 

Nor would I expect otherwise. Even if it was an option persuing a relationship would be ridiculous.

What I don’t know is how to stop the subconscious feelings, the fantasies. Perhaps that is why I’m writing this now, maybe even publishing it in the hope that I will gain some clarity or closure about this uncomfortable situation, after all a problem shared is a problem halved. Or is it just a new problem beginning because the internet is forever and infatuation is fleeting…

Saying this out loud feels like such a big risk yet perhaps it’s yet another hippo in denial that I must acknowledge. I suppose I’m terrified that she’ll somehow read this, that I will make her uncomfortable and I will lose her. I’ve long stated only half jokingly that if she moved to the other side of the country I’d have to move too. Not because I’m in love with her, but because I couldn’t possibly start telling my story all over again to someone new. 

The other issue that complicated things is that, as you know, I’m kind of part of a collective here in my head, body, life…

I/we have conflicting opinions about all sorts of things especially ourself/selves, questioning each other’s existence, comparing reality to perception to try and find a reason that we write and talk to ourselves. I have spent far to long trying to figure out what/who/why we are this way. It leads to so much confusion, so much conflict.

But ultimately, we are ‘Me’ these feelings we have, although seemingly individually, still affect all of us.

Marriage, children, businesses, sexuality, friendships, you know, all the big commitments in life. 

We have always collectively considered ourselves straight and yet only I seem to remember our first consensual sexual experiences; and they were with other girls. 

Then there have been various crushes I have had on women over the years that seem mostly forgotten or remained quietly unacknowledged by the others, maybe even by me, yet right now when I think of them I feel that familiar collection of anticipatory butterflies building in my throat. 

I can imagine actresses like Nicole DaSilva and I get all hot and tingly at the thought of caressing her body, her breasts. Yet I don’t, can’t, make myself feel that same way about men. There was only ever one man I personally could think of in this way, and my heart broke a million times in the process, but he was a writer – and upon reflection, that too, was quite clearly transference.

And yet, despite my realisations in this area I know that the other parts of me are the complete opposite. They can’t relate to my feelings just as I can’t relate to theirs, emotional amnesia. So where does that leave me? Where does that leave us? 

I/We, are happily married to a man. This is a man that they’re all attracted to even that part that seems to feel strangely masculine… My husband is a man who’s flaws are masked by a million reason why they are all head over heels in love with him, he’s the yin to their yang and there’s no doubt that they are perfect for each other.

I however, am not; and I don’t know how to pretend to be.

We are at a loss for how to sexually identify, neither gay nor straight, nor bi – because we are all different. Non binary perhaps? But not in the conventional way. It shouldn’t matter anyway, I intellectually champion the ‘love is love’ movement and yet emotionally I’m lost and unable to feel like myself because I’m body sharing, mind sharing.

I suppose in this self-governed mind-democracy, majority rules. 

Lake.

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