Life sentence

A great storm is howling outside in the dark. The wind pushes the trees sideways. The windows rattle in their frames. Lightening forks and illuminates in silhouettes. Thunder rumbles and cracks like a whip. The rain has turned into hail. I watch the spectacle and all the while a thought chases its tail around in my head…

I am alone

I am alone

I am alone

I am alone and I am frightened. Abandoned by lies and self-serving agenda’s. So alone it feels cold. My life is inhospitable. By day the smiling and the laughing because I know there is no tolerance for sadness. At night I sit on the floor and look out at the dark and wish I was someone different. Too often I wish I had never left my husband. It was a life I was familiar with. Despite the abuse it was a comfort zone. It seems so much harder, out here, alone.

I battle to see the point of my courage and struggles. To what end? If this is freedom I would not choose it again. I’ve gained independence but so much loss along the way. I am severely depressed. I have no hope of feeling better. This is not a life. This is a sentence.

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23 comments

  1. It does feel that way. I’m right in there with you. We are alone.

    We’re born alone. We die alone. In between birth and death, it seems to be something of a crapshoot, who gets the comfort of a life companion, a family, and who doesn’t.

    If abuse is the hammer that will crack the shell of darkness, then that’s what feels to us like family. But it’s not real. It’s not relating to one another as compassionate, loving equals. It’s just more of the same. It rattles our cages of loneliness, that’s all. It’s a distraction, at least until it becomes so deafening that we must once again flee.

    Then the silence sets in. Soon it becomes deafening, and we wish like anything that we weren’t alone….anything is better!

    So the cycle begins again. Since we have no compass of unconditional love and compassion to guide us, our inner terrified baby seeks, and will certainly find, just another such abuser, perhaps the same one, maybe a new face with a new name, but after we are well and righteously hooked, it starts…the familiar pattern.

    Maybe this is not your reality. It’s mine, so I share it, and if it doesn’t ring true for you, please disregard. Simply, this is one example of how our essential loneliness sets us up for settling for abuse. At least if we’re with an abuser, we’re not alone….

    I don’t know how things were with you, but after many go-rounds with this pattern, I began to recognize a deeper, most devastating loneliness inside these relationships. I bet you’ve felt that horrible loneliness that you feel even when you’re living in the same house with him….worse, far worse, than being alone! (Until, of course, you ARE really alone, from which perspective being with him seems preferable to THIS loneliness.)

    So are we sentenced to life in the prison of loneliness? I ask myself that question all the time. What am I here on the planet to accomplish? Am I just a lost embodied soul, taking up space??? What would happen if I just….died?

    I ask myself many times a day. So far, I survive by my native curiosity: maybe something different will happen today, tomorrow, next week. At least stay for the show! I can always leave, but I know for sure that once I leave this body, there’s no returning.

    Do I need abuse in my life? Not anymore. It took me many, many rides on that carousel before I was scared badly enough that I jumped off it for good. I don’t trust myself not to fall for another abuser, because I have literally never had a relationship that was not abusive. Never. So I live my life alone…not entirely, as I have a wonderful dog, who literally keeps me alive.

    You are young, though. You are in an excellent position to reinvent yourself. You have youth, insight, and time on your side. (No-one wants to hear things like this when they feel shite, I know, and I apologise. Nevertheless!)

    This is to say, I heard from some teacher whose name I can’t recall, that if what you are doing isn’t working, **try something different.** You can’t be stuck if you are in motion.

    Big hugs, dear one. Hang on. The sun is waiting for its chance to shine on you.

    Liked by 5 people

    1. I’ve thought of nothing but your response. You have written of me. Everything you describe and explain. Its me and my life. Being alone when I am single, and being alone with an abuser. Within both instances, I am alone. Like you I’ve only experienced abuse. I’m working vigilantly to change that. How do I find myself within my own loneliness and an almost physical craving to be abused. Bad attention is as good as any, my subconscious tells me.

      I survive on the hope of tomorrow, that it will be different. No matter how hard I try, it isn’t. I’m reaching that point where I’m too tired to try anymore. I don’t want to give up, but it really does feel like the odds are stacked against me. I’m not one for self-pity and this is not a ‘poor me’ piece. I sincerely don’t know how much longer I can keep trying. “It rattles our cages of loneliness, that’s all. It’s a distraction, at least until it becomes so deafening that we must once again flee” – yes, I identify with this pattern.

      “bet you’ve felt that horrible loneliness that you feel even when you’re living in the same house with him….worse, far worse, than being alone! (Until, of course, you ARE really alone, from which perspective being with him seems preferable to THIS loneliness.)” YES. And I know its dysfunctional. I’m trying and learning and trying and trying, yet Life lies. Labour is not rewarded. Hope is not laying in wait around the corner if you just try hard enough.

      “You can’t be stuck if you are in motion.” I love that. Its what I try. I make segments in my blog to motivate, encourage, see that confounded silver lining. Its not working. And I’m tired.

      I just wanted to say thank you. I identified in everything you said. And I’ve drawn immense comfort in not being alone in my thoughts. I see my doc in a weeks time. Its what I’ve been holding out for. Hopefully things can change

      Liked by 3 people

      1. Wow. Thank you for letting me know. I just poured out my own experience of that awful existential loneliness…I guess you and I are together in that. (Ironic laughter). So why are we so lonely😕?

        I have wondered whether my inner emptiness hints of BPD on top of BD, oh joy….my psychological testing didn’t show it, but every time I read the Cluster B criteria, there it is….I’m sure I learned a lot from my mother 😦

        After my first hospitalization I was forced to go to a CBT/DBT thing, which I couldn’t really participate in because I was still so profoundly depressed that my brain wasn’t working at all, plus way overmedicated. But I did listen, and I learned that I am not the only one who thinks that everything bad that happens must be my fault. I learned the latter from my mother, who still makes it a point to remind me of that (that everything IS my fault), whenever I’m in her circle of influence. The C/DBT course taught me that I can take a step back and realize that of course there ARE things that are my fault, but I am just one person, not god! Shitty things happen all the time that I don’t even know about. That means I’m not responsible for fixing the entire world….in fact, I can only fix myself. Which I’m not good at.

        Do you have someone you can talk to right away if you feel like you’re slipping?

        Liked by 2 people

      2. It always amazes me that we never really, truly know a person. The person behind the blog, the make-up, the joking. There is an assumption that’s made about people. But behind the exterior are the hidden depths and its when we make a connection with those depths behind the persona that somehow makes us equal and relatable. Yet society prefers the superficial and in a way it cheats all of us human beings from connecting with more people that we can relate to and in doing so, not feel alone. Just like our experiences right now. My impression of you is that you are a successful professional who has it all together. And you may very well be, but we’re also similar because we have a shared experience.. I always marvel at these hidden details of life.

        In answer to your question, no, there is no one to talk to. But I have to say my boss is very supportive and goes out of her way to make time for me. I was tearful today at work and she just listened. And although there is no solution, she gave of her time, and it was so comforting to have someone just listen. I felt less alone. So I’m okay.

        I know I’m unstable but I’m seeing my doc on Wednesday and at least then maybe we can get a crisis plan in place. My doc is amazing, so I’m holding out ’til Wednesday and I know once I see him, I will be ok

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Well, I was once a successful professional. Not very functional, but successful and professional! Unfortunately, bipolar took that away from me some 17 years ago. Longer, really…I had just been hanging on by my fingernails for years before that. I’m a living (important: “living!”) poster child for the devastation bipolar can wreak on individuals and families (me and mine). I’m totally disabled. My family shuns me. I have no friends. My dog is what keeps me alive. You see, this can happen to anyone.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. Laura, I am deeply sadden by your situation. By your loss. Of family, friends, your career. Its truly heartbreaking. I’m so glad you have a dog. Animals are better than people any day.

        There are days when I feel disabled. Between Friday and Monday, I forget how to do my job. The confusion and uncertainty of my memory is disturbing My greatest fear is the loss of my job. In South Africa we don’t have much on offer for disability. I’d have to live in a government run institution which, believe me, is not humane and I would have no disposable income to buy clothes etc.

        Earlier this year I was diagnosed with early onset psychosis which has added to my fear. Which makes ‘disability’ more and more real. And all of which compounds my feeling of being alone. That’s why this ‘aloneness’ frightens me so much. To experience the reality or the possibilities alone, is just overwhelming.

        But your life inspires me. Makes me feel I can do this. If you can ‘live’ this, so can I. And I’m not alone in my situation. That’s a huge reality check. Your circumstance is so similar to mine, but you’re making it work. Thank you for sharing a piece of your story with me. You’ve made an impression on me and know I will often think of you as I grind through life, as I do with my cyber friend Painkills2. You are both strong women I look up to and aspire to be xxx

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Hugs to you. My immediate thought is that rapid cycling changes the focus and the view too often. What I mean is, when rapid cycling is one’s reality and daily life often a fresh spark of hope is just a quick frame–what one sees and feels moves from one thing to another so quickly that the idea of being happy or healthy seems so elusive.
    Would it help if I told you that there is a burdensome feeling not being alone? My view sometimes is that I’m a slave to my family. There’s boring routine and daily grind. I think it’s a catch 22.
    I’m gonna gently remind you of your intention to ‘reinvent’ yourself. I think it’s a brilliant idea and plan.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. Thanks Jill. You’re right about the rapid cycling. I feel a bit better today. But even from one hour to the next I’m swayed by positive motivation and ideas and then swoop into the choice of suicide. I don’t know how to reinvent myself, but I appreciate your offer to help. I understand your burden. Among a family but still feeling alone. It was like that a bit in my marriage. I was invisible, didn’t count, taken for granted. I hope this is not the case for you. Maybe say something? Its no way to live. ❤

      Liked by 1 person

    2. I could have sworn that you wrote a post about reinventing yourself, that’s why I referenced that. Sheesh, I’m sorry Pieces, I thought I was just quoting you. I think for me, cooking can be quite fun but also quite a burden because of everyone’s taste buds being so different. For me, I’m the only feminine element in my household and sometimes I feel left out of the guy activities, but I wanted to clarify that in terms of my family, I love them, but I sacrifice a lot of time trying to keep everyone happy. It takes a lot of energy to manage my family and often I will have time outs where I just don’t keep on top of things, because I can’t be that perfect wife and mom. I’m not that person and I never will be.
      I think my point was in essence something about the grass not being greener on the other side…I’m gonna shut up now 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      1. lol! No worries, Jill. I did do a post on reinventing myself. It must be hard being the only woman because male/female, we’re so different. I’m sorry you feel left out. I don’t have children, but I have so much respect for moms. Its a tough job, and sometimes thankless. No one’s perfect. Perfect is boring. And you’re definitely NOT boring 🙂 And please don’t shut up. I love hearing from you. Long ago I said you look just like a celebrity, and I still do. You’re beautiful…. especially those funny faces you pulled that one time. I often think of them and they make me smile. You won’t believe this, but I was actually taking some selfies of myself today, and your pics came to mind and I also pulled some faces =D =D See what an impression you make to someone halfway across the world *celebrity kiss* *mwah, mwah*

        Liked by 2 people

      2. Awwww, that’s a really thoughtful thing to say! Thanks so much Pieces. It’s amazing how our blogs affect one another, influence, support one another etc. I smiled so hard reading this. You sweetened my morning. Celebrity kiss right back atcha, haha.

        Liked by 2 people

      1. Perhaps lean on your blogging friends a bit more? Look up and see if there are any bipolar support groups, either locally or online?

        Liked by 1 person

      1. No, I don’t, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t one. Seems like depression, in and of itself, is a self-destructive pattern. Chronic pain can also be self-destructive. And there are patterns in everything. I dunno, the article just seemed like an interesting take on depression. Finding the patterns, just like I try to find patterns and triggers to my pain storms. So far, I haven’t been that successful. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      2. I’ve read the article several times now and I have to say it gives a totally new perspective on depression. I love your concept of patterns because its true, and depression certainly follows ingrained patterns. I can now view it from a different perspective, and more some. Thank you for taking the time to find and share such an interesting take on, not only depression, but i do believe it applies to codependency as well. I’m going to do a post about these revelations. Once again, Johnna, you inspire me. Thank you ❤ You are very dear to me

        Liked by 1 person

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