Just what your comments mean to me? I mean, some of you are strangers, in the sense that I've never met you face-to-face, and may never do so. And yet, when I'm so very down, the comments you leave mean something. Some less caring readers will say that I am pathetic for depending upon anonymous readers to feel better about myself. All I can say to those individuals is fuck you -- you're not in any position to judge me.
I've been in such a very, very dark place lately. And am still today. I hide it, and apparently pretty successfully. Even friends and colleagues at work can't tell when I'm hiding the fact that the savage beast has awakened again. It's getting bad enough that I can't work out, or sleep, or concentrate for very long.
Why does he awake? He always seems to make his presence known when I'm dealing with serious criticisms, or highly stressful events. And the last few weeks have been particularly unbearable, with no end in sight. It's the criticism of the dissertation by one, the supercilious attitudes of those few students, the ongoing crisis of rugrat's physical health, the ongoing monetary issues, the worry about looking for a new job when I finish my dissertation (I've already made it known I'm looking, with my supervisor's support, but what if I find nothing). It's just all too much sometimes.
That's when the the beast stretches, yawns, and slyly begins to tell me just what a loser I really am. He demands to know how I dare to think that I'm capable of doing the things I do, how I dare to believe I could succeed at anything. I am not worthy, he berates me. I must admit, he says, that my place in life isn't what or where I dream it will be. And if I continue to pretend I belong, he warns, I will be found out and sent on my way. On and on he viciously undermines my self-esteem and sense of worth.
He's been awake for awhile now, and I've tried everything I can think of to lull him to sleep. In the past, depending upon just how awake he is, I could always get him back to sleep in a few days, at most a week. And he wouldn't show his face again for months. Sometimes simply being quiet in my room, listening to music will do it. Sometimes a night of chocolate. Or spending a $20 on something for myself. Sometimes, I have to eat more, and spend more, to shut him up. And therein is the cycle of beast and food and money. It doesn't even matter if he's only awake for a few days, because I can do enough damage to my bank account in those few days that the next six months I'll be dealing with the aftermath. You see, a limited income isn't my only problem -- spending what little I do have to keep the beast quiet keeps me in debt.
This week was no exception. Dinner via take out or fast food. Tonight I made burgers and fries, but when rugrat wasn't hungry, who do you suppose wound up eating her food, too. And a handbag last night. I always pride myself on sales, and the Liz Claiborne bag at Burlington Coat Factory for $20 was a bargain, I told myself. Except that I really didn't have 20 to spare. Tonight, two pair of trousers and a top at Macy's. Then a pair of pants for rugrat, too. All when I have a mere 50 in the bank, 20 open on my visa, and 7 open on my mastercard. I think they must have raised my limit at Macy's, or I couldn't have bought what I did.
But still, the fucking beast won't go back to sleep. My spending is beginning to cut into bills, and it'll take the next two paychecks to be completely caught up on everything. Which means that in the meantime, I'll be stressed about money, and rugrat, and dealing with criticisms, and that means the beast won't likely go to sleep. It's like the vicious cycles you learn about in abnormal psych.
And so, the comments I read tonight, when I was near tears, meant something. Lulled the beast for moment. And for that, I thank you.