I gave myself ten days.
We all have different methods of adapting to change. In the past, when the sudden realignment of my world found me aching, uncertain and feeling totally alone, I allowed myself to carry my grief for unusually long periods of time. The man I am now is not the same man who in 2010 wrote a laughably “definitive” guide to getting over a breakup for the gals at The Frisky. And I am definitely not the same man who, in the spring and summer of 2011, acted like an uncaged monster let loose on the city of Los Angeles with no regard for his friends’ safety, his bank account or his general wellbeing.
I gave myself ten days.
For ten days I wallowed in depression. I marinated in it until I felt it in every cell. For ten days I let myself cry whenever sad, punch and kick and scream whenever angry, and destroy my body with substances whenever scared. For ten days I gave up any hope of feeling happiness or excitement. For ten days I parsed every word of every single thought of mine to its base component. I spoke incessantly to myself, and when I exhausted myself I’d try friends and family, calling and texting until lines died, like a virus in search of a host. Maybe if I worded my thoughts the right way to the right person, suddenly everything would make sense. Maybe if I already worded it one way to myself and four friends an hour ago, I should try it again but change one or two words. Maybe then everything would make sense. For ten days I sustained myself on memories (both good and bad), ideas, theories, and intoxicants. No sleep, no food, no exercise. Just me and my miserable thoughts, withering and weeping, growing more frustrated with each passing hour. For ten days.
Without diving headlong into bullshit self-help “It takes time and work!”-speak, all I will say is that I am here. I survived the last ten days. As will I the next ten. Did it teach me anything? No. The lesson was learned during the spring and summer of 2011. Its why the next ten days will be healthier, cleaner, more active, more social, and more jovial. We gather experiences, we feel things, we learn things about ourselves and others, and our decisions are informed by those experiences, those feelings, and the knowledge we gain along the way. Go forth and learn. That’s pretty much all I can do.
This Will Destroy You – The World Is Our ___ [MP3]
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