She was so sick of being ‘sick’, of being misunderstood, different, labeled. Crazy, Mentally ill, and all its likeness
One moment she was with them outside, warm, blissful, expansive, humored by the mild weather and enjoying the day and the company. A few moments later, she was crushed, cracked, scared, wounded.
She ran into her room leaving the warm playful sun and gentle dancing breeze outside to fend for themselves, her bare feet slapping on the floor, her worn cotton sundress swirling around her legs in protest of moving so fast, straps slipping down over her shoulders as strands of long hair, deep rich auburn, fell out of its clip to flow down her back and get in her eyes.
So intent on the overwhelm of emotion that engulfed her very being, gripping her heart, stealing her breath , but as yet,unnamed Overtaken by the fear of the feeling, for it hurt, and was cruelly twisting the light places of her soul, turning her thoughts into panic and anger and practically pulling the tears from her. …
So overwhelmed, she felt as if her insides would come up from her throat, her stomach heaving in the humiliation of once again forgetting to check her emotions and saying things….for being emotionally inappropriate.
Inappropriate, smothering….crazy they said, shaming her for being, for breathing, for exuding .that which moved her at any given moment…
Unless she oozed contempt, or screamed rage. Still inappropriate but THAT was understandable. That could be fixed, just pop a pill or 7, a few days at that ‘nice place in the country” to rest and reconsider.
The other was unacceptable.
Just because no one got it….She felt everything. From despair so deep, to joy that was boundless…Not just felt. Became each one. Uncontrolled, unconstrained. Why was it so wrong… how was it so wrong to be what you are,,,,to be joy and let it bubble forth in expressions of the feeling you are,,,,?
She felt the darkness bubbling up inside her, the loneliness of being misunderstood, of being labeled and cast out for expressing love…for being love.
Self loathing and anger, directed at the beauty that was her soul for daring to come out and bask in the light then, there, in that moment...in front of those people. Pure spitefulness towards those, that a moment ago, she had felt bonded to.
Why should she have to feel this way for being what she was when it was they who should feel it, for denying what they could be? Sick, tired of being sick when it was not she, in her mind, who was twisted,
She held no motivation in love, or joy, or with her exuberance,,, except to live it…no expectation or even need for return in kind, only to be all that she was and felt She felt so free and light of heart, so open and unguarded in the moment of expression and so miserably unsure scared, timid in the moment after.
The moment when she could see in their eyes that, by their rules, she had crossed a line. Being herself, she had gone beyond their ability to understand, to accept. She would have felt more relief if they had turned their backs on her, physically shutting her out. That she could overcome. But wretched platitudes as she tried to explain what she meant, why she was. .The looking at her with pity mixed with fear…for they could not understand. How dare she feel? How dare she forget to pull herself in?
How dare she exist..
She could not blame them could she? Her thoughts whispered as she curled into a ball wishing only to disappear from herself, within herself. To cast out this darkness this ache she could not yet name
WHat was this that threatened to pull her into the dreaded darkness to pay penance. without any clear knowledge of when she would once again be free. Something beside the jury of her peers, the judge not appointed but swift to rule, had put her here…
The tears came freely now, running down her face, blurring the line between what was real and what was only her fear…
Maybe they hadn’t looked at her like that at all..maybe it was fear that teased her into thinking they turned on her. Self doubt not their doubt. They were always on her side weren’t they? Now the light spinning with the growing darkness, there was no fighting it but she didn’t want to let go…she wanted to go back to the sun and the breeze tugging at the strands of her hair and the fall of her skirt as she danced and twirled and …felt.. that unguarded moment of safety when she let go. The bliss of being, dashed by the fear of betrayal for uttering the things her heart said to her,,,
Her frustration at not understanding the name for this regret and contempt and not knowing where to aim it, in the realization that it may have been her own disordered thinking. That possibly, she had registered the surprise in their eyes as something other than that for they knew her well enough to know she meant no harm,,, she just bubbled without thinking,
WHAT was the name of the darkness then? Had it been lingering all morning dancing at the edges of her bliss, waiting for an unguarded unexamined moment to cruelly slap her down with no help but that which she herself gave it by not questioning it,,, Fucking dark! She wanted to run now…
She curled tighter into herself, grabbing handfuls of skirt in shaking hands as if it were the only connection to reality, the cotton so thin, it couldn’t;t take much to break it. Just like her. Crying out for help with no discernible voice, Hoping one of them would come to find her, to help her cover the wounds, to bring her back to the light,
She needed to name it then it would go…name it, own it, evict it from her mind and loosen the grip on her heart, The minutes wore on and wavering between the confusion of who cast her out really, searching for a name to it, fearing to face it but more than anything ,,,, wanting someone to come and care about her… to clear it up,,,
Please please please, over and over and as no one came she felt the despair and darkness reaching up trying to get a grasp of her,,,and her heart beating faster as the fear of the dark and the loneliness, and in desperation sobbing with the need of a caring touch.
No one was coming. please come,
Then she heard it,,, the soft knock of someone, unsure they were doing the right thing, but unable to not do something. At the sound of her rescue, she opened her mouth, sobbing harder, without any bit of control, her mind screaming Help Me!, her sobs stealing her voice.
Why had it taken this long? Why had they left it til she was already on the edge of darkness? What was this feeling, this god damned feeling that cruelly taunted her senses and made her physically feel like she wanted to vomit…to get it out….
Again the knock at the door, a little more insistent. So close to the relief, to being safe, she could taste it,,,,she opened her mouth to cry out for help …relief..need,,, but the dark came out, and she screamed;
go away! leave me alone! I hate you!
Because somewhere in the back of her mind, the doubt asked her what if it wasnt you – what if you saw what you thought? Crying harder at the sound of retreating footsteps, paralyzed in her withdrawal though desperate to get up and run,,,,,right, wrong be damned….
Don’t leave me, she whispered though there was no one to hear or stay. …..
In that moment, a mere instant too late, she knew,,,the name of it, the depth of it,,,,the despair and cruelty of it,
The darkness engulfed her, and took her away……
- And the darkness rises. (thruglass.wordpress.com)
- Darkness is Nothing But Absence of Light (rollingwithvishnu.wordpress.com)
- the prayer of a wretched heart… (paperairplanesneverflyinstraightlines.wordpress.com)
- Hi,I’m Fear..How do you do?? (anuprasenna.wordpress.com)
- Painful (smilelaughect.wordpress.com)
29 thoughts on “Unbearable Darkness of the Blessed Light Bringer”
you describe so beautifully–and so frighteningly. I’ve BEEN in the mental place described here–different diagnosis, but similar journey. And you’ll laugh at me for bringing up this reference, but this kind of experience is why a certain moment from the last Harry Potter movie has always resonated with me. Harry asks Dumbledore, “Is this real, or is it all in my head?” And Dumbledore wisely answers: “Of course it’s in your head, Harry. But why should that mean it’s not real?” Mental illness may be “just in our heads,” but it’s a REAL experience for us. And the scariest part may be how disconnected a person can feel from the rest of the people in the world. I’m hoping “she” remembers she’s not alone. 🙂
thanks- I like that reference, made me smile for sure.
Wow. Standing and applauding this, lizziec.
I think this piece gives me a better understanding of something I have only peripheral experience of.
thanks, unfortunate;y, i live it … a lot. how to ever explain it t anyone?
Frighteningly real….I worked with the mentally ill for many years, and this is one of the most profoundly emotional, and deeply insightful descriptions I’ve ever seen, of what some of us go through in life, just for being different. I sincerely hope that someone, sometime, came through the door, hearing the plea behind the insult and pain…..often, all it takes to feel better is for someone to show they care enough to get past the initial shock of rejection to give the needed attention….thanks for sharing…..take care out there…..
Beautifully expressed … I’m simply at a loss for further words. Thank you.
I must say “LIZZIE” you writings are so Profound !!! So inteluctually
Solid !!!Tell me why is it that you send a letter to my house and call Donna
To try and fill her head with mindless bullshit !!!
It’s funny and so like you grasping at straws !
And even more astonishing that you were warned for 2 years !!!
Stand in your bathroom doorway and curse the dark , the darkness you’ve brought upon your self
Call me names belittle me some more , crush my heart ! Tear me apart limb from limb !
After all it’s only your feelings that matter what you want how you want it .your way!
I will ask this last time for you to call I want to speak to mikey . Or is that one more of your last ditch efforts you know my number ? Or have you forgotten that too!
who are you? what do you hope to achieve? I wouldn’t spend 2 seconds on trying to tell you spineless twat pezhead wife anything. oR the money for a stamp to send anything to your house. LEAVE ME ALONE!!! OH…. you already did noW go away!!!!
Lizzie! I am in awe of your genius for expression. In awe. I wish I could give you a big ol’ hug right this very minute! You are so amazing! All this going on and yet you still manage to shine so brightly and stay so upbeat and be funny AND Creative in so many different ways. And everything else you do! and Mom to 6 kids! and now Grams! I just think I’m so lucky to be your BBFF!! And I’m so glad you shared this. Love you Lizzie!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂
thanks… love you too 🙂
Wow why erase what I’ve written afraid everyone will
Find out the truth ? Is it not better than to lie?
Just your side huh? Tell them LIZZIE!
Please tell them how many nights you shamed me
How I was there for you . How you abused my love and turned it against me
Tell them of your love !! Please do they all should have lived trough what you’ve done to me !!
NO JUST LIE AND DENY JUST LIKE MOMMY AND DADDY SAID YOU’D DO!!!
GOOD JOB YOU GOT THEM ALL BULLAHITED
haven’t erased anything – try looking where you put it…… thanks for stopping by.
I must say I am really looking like the abusive one … I didn’t put your shit on blast YET – and THIS post has NOTHING to do with you…..you don;t even read what I write so how dare you come here and claim I haven;t told your side too…..yep …you showed them the real you right here…all by yourself… good job.
I held my breath reading this. Nice writing!
Lizzie. You are so unique. So very special. The clarity in your description gives me insight into my own struggles with feeling scrambled, joyful, humiliated, alone, sad, over, under, never-on-the-mark. Thank you.
I am so glad that I can help someone else see the light even by the darkness of mine… thank you for your kind words and for letting me know I touched someone else who struggles too…
…and whats more, did I say that this essay is absolutely stunning?
😳 thank you…so much.
I am in awe of your ability to express emotions so vividly that I forgot to breath. I wanted to come through that door and hold you and tell you its ok, you are ok!
Lizzie, you are a very special person, I can’t relate to being Bi-polar but I can relate to being told my feelings are wrong or that I’m being too emotional, not seeing things clearly and I’ve doubted my own perception of things. What I see in you is a person who cares deeply and feels things intensely and in my mind the world needs more people that know how to feel, love, and hurt. You have an incredible talent, only someone who has felt intense emotion could describe it with such passion and pain. ((((((((Hugs)))))))
I have never mentioned to you that when my son attempted suicide a year and a half ago he was diagnosed as being bi-polar. I used to find him in his closet crying wanting to die when he was a young as 10. Severe ups and he loves intensely, but can go so low and when he gets angry he can be scary; never to me but to JC, and other assholes who have crossed him, jealousy, every emotion felt intensely. But he is the sweetest, kindest, most loving, intelligent, talented, handsome man and I could not be prouder of my boy. I always have been. My family told me to wash my hands of him, forget I ever had him when he was 18, 19. They said I had ruined him.
I guess there are people in the world who would turn their back on their child or loved one but it is not something I could ever do to my boy.
Your post has helped me understand what it is like for him at times thank you for that Lizzie.
As for some of the comments on this post I must say you have handled it with poise, composure and grace. Like I used to say to JC when he accused me of making him look like and asshole. If telling the truth makes you look like an asshole maybe you should stop being an asshole”. You may remove this portion of my comment if you wish but I couldn’t ignore the obvious elephant in the room.
Love and hugs to you Lizzie
Thank you for your kind words and sharing about your son. It is so hard, I have been on both sides as my 11 yo – has emotional issues – possible bipolar but I didn;t want him to have the dx so early, and he often would sit on the couch with a kitchen knife talking about dying – such anger and sadness but I always saw in his eyes the desperation, the need..because I recognized it. It is so hard to have understanding of this disorder too because nobody can see the turmoil on the inside, or that it isn’t formed from malicious intent, or even need for attention. It is hard to feel everything so deeply – I sometimes use the analogy of sliding down a razor blade into a bowl of salt. The acting out is almost always – for me anyways, a defense mechanism – when I can;t handle any more, my feeling and senses and heart have been bruised beyond being able to take another punch. YOur son is lucky to have you as his mother… for I have seen some who do wash their hands of the whole person becasue they cannot tolerate and fear the disordered parts… Bipolar is not who I am, it is what I have to live with, and certainly is has helped form who I am, but is not the complete definition of me. I appreciate your support and your insight and your kindness …thank you, from my heart.
I used to find kris in the closet with knives saying he wanted to die, it just breaks a mother’s heart. I took him to counseling but he got so that he would “play” the counselor, he knew the routine. When he was little and afraid or hurt he would put on displays of anger that scared people, they didn’t know what to do or think. I would try to explain he was just scared but he looked anything but scared. I would feel so bad for him because I knew inside he was a scared little guy that needed reassurance but he drove everyone away with his rage.
Funny story. I got calls from the school regularly; right from kindergarten on. He had a wonderful teacher for kindergarten and grade 1; she was a sweet young thing that understood Kris and he really got attached to her. Then in grade 2 he got a new teacher who just could not handle him. I was getting calls at work every day. Kris would get angry and throw something, he was very sensitive and the kids picked up on it and teased him etc. One day he got mad at a kid and picked up a chair and threw it at the kid.
The teacher called me in complete panic and I promised I’d talk to Kris. That night I asked him about it and he said he just gets so angry he can’t stand it and has to throw something or hit someone. I told him that he couldn’t throw things or hit people and we had to come up with a more acceptable way of releasing that anger. I suggested that when he got that angry he go for a good run round the school until it passed.
Well the next day the teacher calls and she is almost hysterical, she keeps saying she doesn’t know what to do. I told her to calm down and just tell me what happened. She said they were in class and all of a sudden Kris stood up, ran out the fire escape door and was running around and around the school and he won’t stop. I had to laugh! I said, “I guess I should have filled you in on the conversation Kris and I had last night”. A slight over sight on my part!
I have to laugh a little – such similarities, J would do the same thing rage and if you looked in his eyes you saw wildness – I was he only one who knew he was desperate – usually the only one who could talk him down – the problem being that you would think I was best equipped to deal with it while I was actually the worst…I usually snapped too…the other kids would give us a wide berth….my guilt that I could have passed this on to my kids – and did and one of them hurts so terribly much ate me alive for awhile until I had to accept I did the best I could with what I knew – and I didnt know the name – How can you say you would go back if going back means not having your children – yet I can say that if I had known what I had and that I could pass it on….I wouldn’t have …I would have done things different I guess….I love them all so so much but that is the best I really am for them….love…I have been ..struggling tonight – so I am gong to maybe sleep…Peace my Friend…and thank you. 🙂
I completely identify with this piece- the ‘feeling the emotion & becoming the emotion’- that is me through and through.
Love ya sister!
love you too! I’m glad you got it – sorry you feel it but we aren’t alone 🙂
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