Friday, December 27, 2002

Thoughts which trouble me before I sleep.

I’m having a difficult time deciding whether I’m exceedingly arrogant or exorbitantly self-abusive. They’re twin parts of my personality, I think. Which makes sense in a way because I couldn’t be exorbitantly self-abusive if I weren’t first entirely and unhealthily obsessed with myself.

The demons in the back of my brain keep reminding me of what a fool I am. Why do I have to be so stupid? Why do I let my tongue get away from me? Why do I let myself, in fact force myself, to suffer for these things? I’m so stupid sometimes. Pretension and stupidity; hypocrite!

But I know that I’m not worthless. I’m successful, generally. Much more so than many of the people I looked up to growing up. Considering my upbringing, I’m comparatively quite well educated and cultured. I know that I’m relatively intelligent and have better rhetorical skills than the average. I know that I’m generally a kind and generous person. I’m aware of many of my shortcomings and earnestly work to correct them.

That is, when I’m not obsessing over them, as I am right now. Such self-loathing! It’s funny that you can have a conversation with someone, and know that you performed almost flawlessly. It’s just the one tiny flaw that gets to you. Twenty minutes of brilliant dialogue destroyed by one slip of tongue or slight of mind. And you wonder if they noticed, and if they remember, and if they know what a goddamn fool you really are.

I hate feeling this way. I don’t feel this way so often as I used to. I’m reminded of being fourteen, and utterly despaired. While I realize that my emotions are probably actually insanely out of whack and stampeding blindly and wildly in a hundred different directions, I can feel almost nothing except a general sense of dread and disgust.

Other people feel things. They feel them, they accept them, they move on from them. Perhaps they explode in a fury of them; perhaps they shed tears or throw things or scream. I don’t. I obsess. I don’t feel. I deny feeling. I stew like my mother. I worry. I hate and I broil without ever sensing flame. I am loathing incarnate; life as a defense mechanism.

I close my eyes and imagine desolate scenes. Kingdoms ripped apart and children abandoned to their own filth and disease. I don’t know these realities. They aren’t mine. And yet somehow I yearn for them. They’re comfort and succor to my suspicious mind. I despise my melancholic melodrama, but I cannot escape from it.

When will it pass? When will I pass? My skull is aching. I can hear my heart beating and feel the blood rushing through my veins. I inhale and exhale to the tune of my thumping pulse. Life is fragile and suffering. Searching for a womb to replace the womb I’ve long lost.

I despised my contentment. This is my reward.