At the end of the day it's about how much you can bear, how much you can endure. Being together, we harm nobody; being apart, we extinguish ourselves.
As the light begins to intensify, so does my misery, and I wonder how it is possible to hurt so much when nothing is wrong.
I might appear confident and chatty, but I spend most of my time laughing at jokes I don't find funny, saying things I don't really mean - because at the end of the day that's what we're all trying to do: fit in, one way or another, desperately trying to pretend we're all the same.
But whichever form it took it brought with it, in those moments of bitter anguish, such a desperate surge of hope that it was almost untouchable, and flitted away like a golden butterfly into the bright blue sky - beautiful, unreachable and completely transistent.
Everything hurts. He can barely lie still. He feels caught. He wants to run, but where? He feels certain he will always remain like this - trapped within his own body, his own mind. The emotional pain is so strong, it becomes physical. He feels it knotting and twisting inside him, ready to crush him, suffocate him. He is losing his grip, he is losing his mind. He thought he had it all back under control, but suddenly nothing makes sense any more. Does anyone else know what it's like to be stuck somewhere between dead and alive? I't s a half-world of incoherent pain where emotions you put on ice start slowly thawing again. A place where everything hurts, where your mind is no longer strong enough to force your feelings back into hibernation.
I dial her mum's number, then sit down cross-legged, facing the wall. When she comes on the line, she sounds uncertain, hesitant. 'Hey! Guess where I am?' I ask, my voice loud with false cheer. 'Rami told me. The Wellesly Hospital in Worthing. What's it like?' 'For a loony-bin it's actually quite decent,' I reply. 'I don't have Sky or an en-suite, and the menu isn't exactly à la carte, but you know...' I tail off. There is a silence. 'Do you have your own room?' Jenna asks, 'Oh yeah, yeah. I have a lovely view of the sea between the bars of my window.' She doesn't laugh. 'Have you started' -there is a pause as she searches for the right word -'threatment?''Yeah, yeah. We had group therapy today. Tomorrow we'll probably have art therapy - maybe I'll draw you a hourse and a garden. I know, perhaps they'll teach us to make baskets! Isn't that why they call us basket cases?''Flynn, stop,' Jennah softly implores.'And we'll probably have music therapy the day after. Maybe I'll get to play the tambourine. Or the triangle. I've always wanted to play the triangle!''Flynn-''No, I'm serious! I'll ask for some manuscript paper and see if I can write a composition for tambourine and triangle. Then I can post if off to you to hand in for my next composition assignment.''Flynn, listen-''Hold on, hold on! I'm making a note to myself now: Find fellow insane musician and start composing the Flynn Laukonen Sonata for Tambourine and Triangle.''Flynn-''And then, when they let me out, if they ever let me out, perhaps you could pull a few strigns and organize for me and my tambourine buddy to give a recital. I'm not sure where though -how about the subway at Marble Arch tube? Nice and central, good acoustics-''What are the other people like?' Jennah cuts in, an edge to her voice. I notice she doesn't use the word patients. Clever Jennah. For a moment there you almost made me forget I was locked up in a mental institution.'Round the bend, just like me,' I reply. 'I'm in excellent company. We'll be swapping suicide tips in no time at all!' I give a harsh laugh.
They say that depression makes you see everything in a negative light. I disagree. It makes you see things for what they are. It makes you take off the fucking rose-tinted glasses and look around and see the world as it really is- cruel, harsh and unfair. It makes you see people in their true colours- stupid, shallow and self-absorbed. All that ridiculous optimism, all that carpe diem and life-is-what-you-make-of-it. Words, jsut empty words in an attempt to give meaning to an existence taht is both doomed and futile.
...and my loneliness, always my loneliness - that airless bubble of despair that is slowing stifling me.
Out of the millions and millions of people that inhabit this planet, he is one of the tiny few I can never have.
Within the grand scale of things, sitting in a classroom day after day is so utterly meaningless and pointless that it actually makes his chest hurt to think about it.
School is a pile of crap. School has always been a pile of crap – he had just never bothered to think about it until today.
He has little hope that university, when he gets there next year, will be any different. Like right now, all these pupils taking notes as if their life depended on it. All for what? he wants to shout. To get into the top university, so that you can somehow convince yourself you are better than the great unwashed? So that your parents can convince themselves that they are better parents than the great unwashed? So that Mum and Dad’s fourteen-hour days at the office, paying for a fucking private education you never asked for, wasn’t just a pathetic waste of a life?
They say when you really love someone, you should be willing to set them free. So that is what I am doing. I will step back and you will move on. I will let you go. ... Your happiness means everything to me. I will listen for your voice in the distance. I will look at the moon. I will keep you in my pocket. I will carry your smile with me everywhere, like a warm and comforting glow.
In some indefinable way he felt drawn to her, as if he already knew her, as if they had been close friends, soulmates even, somewhere in a previous existence. Her mere presence seemed to calm his thoughts, saving him from the vicissitudes of his mind. She appeared before him as familiar, a kindred spirit. Perhaps it was something in her face, her eyes. She seemed to know . . . what, exactly, he was not sure. She seemed to understand. Or rather, he had detected in her the capacity to understand.