Fractured

Fractured and torn.

Upside down and inside out.

Losing grip on reality, capturing it for a fleeting moment, only to watch the wisp of normality slip through my fingers.

The Boy: “Just be normal!!!”

Me (screaming): “WHATS NORMAL????? HOW AM I NOT NORMAL?????”

I know I am not ‘normal’ – and please don’t start the age old debate about what is normal is abnormal – we don’t need to intellectualize the concept.

I am struggling with normal reactions, emotions and how to respond in social situations – I have always had to be careful, wary and watchful to ensure that my reactions are appropriate. I am constantly trying to assess my reactions, copy others, think of the way I should be responding rather than being the awkward adolescent I am.

The longer I am sober, without drink or drugs, the harder it is to hide the fact that my grasp on reality and life is tenuous at best. Since I can remember, I have always looked for cues on how to behave, react and just be – I have used other peoples perceptions and standards be my guide on who to be.

To my grandparents – I was the perfectly respectful grand-daughter who always wore the clothes they liked, had my hair neatly in a bun or ponytail, stood silently until spoken to, called everyone Mrs/Mr and was the most politest child I could possibly be. In return I had their unconditional love and support, the safety of their home and was looked after well. I was loved.

To my mother – I was the Mother. I looked after her. I was the grown up. I still am today, although I feel like a lie, an alien and I wonder how long I can keep up appearances.

I always related best with adults – they always had an agenda and an expectation of who I was. Children didn’t – they allowed you to be who you wanted to be which was scary as I didn’t know who I was. So I became a grumpy, surly and defensive little thing – hard to make friends with, but once you broke down the ice fortress I was overly sensitive and continually watching and trying to fit in.

Now, as an adult, I am lost. Completely and utterly lost. I don’t know who I am, where I am going or who I want to be. I am raw, without protection or layers of skin – I have been flayed in the last 6 weeks until I do not know who I am. Nor do I have people around me who want to tell me who I am – they just want me to be me.

How can I be me if I am afraid of me? Afraid of who I will find if I let me out. I am petrified and feel like I have lost grip on everything I had built up – I felt myself in some parts of my job, yet that has gone and that persona is too harsh and structured for real life.

I want to be happy, free and loving – I just don’t know how to be.

I am upside down and inside out and feel like I am in pieces – scared that I will shatter even further until no-one will be able to put the pieces back together again.

Now I know why I was so scared of reality – in reality there is no me.

Choices

So glad I have a choice now.

Normally I would have been drunk by now having drunk all week.

 

Drinks at work tonight – not a craving.

Tonight I thought about drinking in an abstract way – glanced at a bottle shop and decided against it.

Walked past a bar and a cafe that I used to drink out tonight – not one moment of hesitation.

So now almost another day has gone by and I am still sober.

After feeling like I was completely broken twice this week – about work and about The Boy – I reminded myself to stay in the moment, to ride out the pain and tomorrow would be a new day.

This week there have been more moments of gratitude than intense pain, more reasons to be thankful than resentful and more reasons to stay sober than get drunk.

There is light at the end of the tunnel.