personal blog: simon

in bed, listening to the excruciating silence. my thoughts are spinning. there’s nothing concrete. that’s how it gets. heartbreak, and I am void. love, and I am filled with anger. and then it happens. the lights always dim first. my eyes play that trick. the physical symptoms of my onset. the lights, a wave to trigger the next improbability. the room somehow shifts to forty-five degrees. how is that even possible? but I know that is how it starts. the episode of agony. the flood, and as my thoughts spin, so does the room. I sit up, catching air. my chest is squeezed again. twice in a day. compressed and I cannot fill my lungs with air. the oxygen is always the problem. never enough of it.

I jump out of my bed trembling.

‘what do I do?’

‘what do I do? besides breathe.’

I was always afraid of the dark. had to keep the lights on. I still do. but it doesn’t help. I still get scared at night. I still get scared when I’m alone. when I’m truly alone. and I am truly alone. no one’s here to rescue me.

I scramble painfully to the kitchen. a shallow inhale but a rapid one. I hold it for a moment. it doesn’t help. my hands shake but I hold my phone as if it is my life-line. all these contacts, yet no one to call. distress centre helpline number on the refrigerator door. unused, as I’m never in the mood to spill my woos to a stranger.

‘breathe!’ my brain is screaming. ‘breathe!’

‘fuck you brain, I am breathing.’ I argue the voices inside.

the sensation that my lugs will combust and I will die, so the goal is, don’t pass out. because if I pass out. I die.

what nonsense in my head? but the thought of death is on a loop.

another shallow breath, but I hold it, even though my lungs feel on fire, and retrieve a flashlight from the drawer, along with paper and crayons. almost every nook in my place, has a flashlight, paper, and crayons. like a hoarding drug addict, stashing his medicine under every cushion, inside every sock, among knives and forks. not even hiding it, but enough concealment to appear normal. but, I couldn’t conceal that from Kevin for too long.

he snuck his hand under the pillow, as he laid on top of me, kissing me with punctuation, only to be disrupted by an object found under the pillow. “what is this?” he asked with that condescending crooked mouth. yet, it was the most appropriate question, to which I reflexively shrugged.

it didn’t take Kevin long to realize that my obsession bordered at around ninety flashlights in the whole suite. an obsession from childhood. as I said darkness is my burden, and silence in darkness is my torment.

I fold the paper in half and draw half of the snowflake with precision, taking extra care, taking extra time. inhaling with every straight line. exhaling when I reach the end, the tip. then repeat, until I gather about ten. cut them out with the same rhythmic attention to detail. turn the flashlight on, take a break. switch the flashlight off, release the imprisoned air. but most importantly listen to every click with attentiveness. run through my regular set of twenty clicks. ten on. ten off.

then repeat.

how do I recover?

read more: ← saturday 21:42sunday 03:41 →

© simon whittle — second act