In an attempt to banish demons, I am going to put this here.
Clumsy, my words, an admission of shameful insecurity born of the usual blur of misplaced paranoia. “I don’t fit in. I don’t belong. I shouldn’t be here.” Who would understand such ridiculousness? Unless they themselves had a similar conceit. Which in this instance is not the case. In the turmoil of my head the voice of reason begs to be reassured of it’s knowledge that these thoughts are unreasonable. The sanity hoping for a touchstone to ground it and banish these plaguing insecurities.
The unforeseen explosion, a Molotov cocktail shattering of jagged words that cut like shards of glass; flying into my face. Rage. Resentment. Disappointment. A bombardment of fury accusing me of ingratitude, of selfish gracelessness, of an assortment of ugliness and more. Slashing the rational, stomping the sanity inside me until it huddles deep beneath the already suffocating layers of fear, pain, paranoia, insecurity and feelings of utter uselessness and failure. Deep down, the knowledge that my insecurity is unfounded and paranoia unwarranted is pushed until I am sure that I deserved this explosion, sure that I deserved this broken reservoir of hateful resentment that floods over me. I am sure that I am this terrible, ungrateful, ugly, shameful little twat that this tirade in the street is assuring me that I am.
I am terrified. The fear rising is enough to make me puke, I don’t. I manage to choke it down. I speak of being scared, of being scared of him.
A secondary explosion
He is yelling his outrage, his gall at my being frightened, by him of all people. So I am awash with fresh fright, pain, despair. (How could I be so awful, so stupid? Inside I ask myself. For a moment I consider hurling myself in front of a passing car, but I can’t do that to another person) I am huddling like a child; like I did as a child when the parents would scream and yell at one another. Or when they would scream and yell at me. I clutch my stomach, a curled snail shell of a girl there on the sidewalk in the bedraggled wee hours of the next days morning. Splinters of my trust flying off in every direction, shrapnel from the successful hits of his words.
People passing tell him to calm down or he may end up in jail. He breaths a moment, saying to me this is not the place for this ‘conversation’. I have barely said a thing, I am shaking; fragments of my trust shedding from me like water. Everything slows and he suppresses. I shut myself down, the robot rising to the surface to walk my legs back to the hotel. Automaton’s can not feel.
A valiant stranger stops me to ask if I want to remain with this person, if I want to return to the hotel with this man who has just spent some indeterminable amount of time angrily berating me. All I can say is it’s fine and that the angry man is not entirely wrong. I am cut up inside, bleeding from a thousand wounds, but clamp down the vice of composure. The stranger says he understands as he is going through fights with his wife over her depression. This cracks my fake face, I can feel the tears again, welling. I reassure the stranger I am fine. We walk on, I am barely aware of the world around me at all. One foot in front of the other, walk, walk, walk.
We return to our hotel. I am in tatters, scrambling to quick stitch myself back together. He continues to talk. I don’t remember if I said much, I don’t think so. I mostly just focused on the mundane tasks of straightening my things and setting out items that will be used over the course of the next few days.
There are his tears, alien and almost as unexpected as the explosions. He does not cry; he rarely shows any strong emotions at all. He is sorry. There are apologies and more tears. I refuse to cry anymore, striking my leg with punishing force every time it feels like I might. I will not allow myself to slip into the useless state of crying. I fight it and do my best to let it all go, to forgive.
A level of trust that took me years to acquire; years to build into this safe, strong carapace and now it is broken. There is a terrible hole in my shell, the razor sharp edges quick to cut if I am not careful. I have no idea how long it will take to mend this and it fills me with mind numbing sorrow to see it in such disrepair.
And it all comes down to this small thing;
I just wanted to be told I was being silly. That my worries were unfounded. That my paranoia was just that and nothing more. I needed someone to help the rational me fight back the doubt; to help the sane me put her foot down.
Sometimes I am not strong and I don’t know how to ask the right way.