The demeaning thing about this disease is that it takes away your ability to see true and false sometimes. I have written about this before and it reared its ugly head again.
The complexities of this disease/disorder make it so that during times of great stress or when there are major stressors/conflict, when it is one of those times that Gibbs would tell you to “trust your gut,” you just can’t or you’re not willing to or you’ve been stripped of that ability. I’ll give you an example: last night, my wife and I were at an all-you-can-eat mussels restaurant (FYI, be careful with mussels, because if they aren’t open after they’re cooked, don’t eat them – trust me), using eight portions plus the wiggle room to allow for a cheat meal of no portion counting. It was really nice; not the food, but definitely the company and the experience. In fact, the food was really unbalanced, which I guess is how I felt because three plates of mussels in and it settled, appeared to be the end, having had a satisfying amount of food and another plate would be overkill. However, even though I didn’t want that fourth bowl, there was that tiny voice in the back of my head saying “are you sure?” And in that circumstance, I was pretty sure that my motivations were true and as the night progressed, I was right. Then comes today . . . same trust issues, but totally different aspect of the blackness shows up.
Cutting to the chase, I feel that Mom is going behind my back and playing both sides with Family Friend (who has dropped all pretences and appears to not give a fuck about this at all, but I’ll get to that I’m sure). It appears like she is breaking the trust that we have been working to build as a support system to combat the blackness. And like an abused puppy, the slightest raising of the hand (or in this case, the appearance of raising a hand) causes me to flinch, get my hackles up and lash out. In this circumstance, as I was getting angrier and more frustrated, I doubted my motivations, I wasn’t sure that they were true. I couldn’t tell if it was the blackness egging me on, sitting in the bleachers yelling slurs, throwing bananas and spewing hate to rile me up.
I was wrong. I was very wrong. There was no intent to injure, but yet I flinched. The complexity of this disease, of mental illness in general, is that it takes away your ability to step back and say, “who is this?” Is it me who is now yelling at the unknown cause of the ABS brakes kicking in when I’m driving? Is it me who is now punching TVs and doors and metal poles out of pure frustration? Is it me who is dropping F bombs in front of administrators? OR is it the blackness’ tendrils leeching the goodness out of me? That is what is demeaning and disheartening. I don’t know how long that voice will stick around or how long it will be this loud or where the source of this anger comes from. It is so spider-webbed on my insides.
I’m going to believe that this is the evidence of wear and tear, of inhuman degrees of internal and external stress (some of it self-inflicted, I’m sure), that it is the flakes of rust coming off. This is evidence of the balance sheet being unbalanced (past slip-ups out-weighing the present-day), but they are being re-weighted. Believing that I don’t know the motivations, whether I should attribute this to me or the blackness, all goes back to that lack of confidence. However, let’s go back to Occam and his Razor: I know I am not a bad person, I do not want to be angry or frustrated or make people feel bad. I don’t want to be that person. So Occam’s Razor being as it is, if I don’t want to be that person and I’m not trying to be that person, we should believe the more likely scenario: there are flakes of rust, flakes of decay, flakes of blackness that we are stripping off. There is work to be done and the ugliness of shoving charcoal down my throat and waiting for it all to erupt was on display today.
I know that I have a kind heart, I know that I wear my heart on my sleeve – it’s the reason why I feel this so very much. That’s why it is going to take a kind heart, a kind soul (in fact, many kind souls who love and are understanding and believe that the kind heart will prevail and the blackness won’t be a cancer on my kind heart anymore) to help me through this. So until the flakes of rust float away and this blackness still has a hold on me, we say, “darling, we ain’t fucking giving up, because that’s what we do.”