“Distance, like the stars from our Earth, the very same distance from my heart to yours.”

The twinkle in her eyes isn’t from stardust, diamonds or pearls; Her eyes shine from her own wonder, her curious nature for everything around her. A polished stone set in metals pales to capture the allure her eyes hold, for her eyes are to alive for such similes to hold a sliver of justice.

She is not a star, some solar entity floating in space, whose light takes lifetimes to reach those around her. She is home, in that comfortable sense of belonging to something that means everything. She is the familiar creak of decade old stairs in the way her smile crinkles around the edges of her mouth, she is both the soft touch of pillows you used to build forts with siblings and the firm cushion that captured so many tired tears…

A stare from her is the reflection you saw in the mirror when you were 10, before the world and the nightmares turned all thoughts dark and your image into a shadow, something to be feared and despised. She isn’t…she wasn’t just some pretty face, some human body to pass the time with, to float through life with. She was…brilliant in how she tricked a boy into loving himself, into thinking he had a real shot..I can never hate her…I can never hate anybody because she made me focus on me..and now I can’t look away, but I don’t like what I see..and she isn’t here to quell my demons, and I’m so tired of living in the dark…I’m tired of fearing death and fearing life, of being empty of anything aside from fear..I’m running on autopilot, and I just can’t do this anymore..I need someone to save me..somebody please tell me they can save me..

“I am empty, but oddly enough, this emptiness feels heavy…it feels so damn heavy.”

I can’t cry anymore. I used to cry driving home every day. I used to cry in the shower, and when I laid down for bed. I turned to drugs and alcohol to numb my mind, so I wouldn’t have a free thought left to drift towards my unpleasant past, or at least the unpleasant past my depression had formed in my head. I cried for a myriad of reasons. I was sad about where I was in my career, feeling like a failure compared to my friends and family. I was angry at my body, because I couldn’t force it to do anything I wanted, yet it forced bite after bite down my throat until I ballooned into a 200lb ball of blubber and despair. I was anxious around anybody, even people I had known all my life; I felt everyone judging me, even though they only wanted to help, and I couldn’t stand feeling so pathetic. I raged on the weekends, wrecking my apartment and getting reprimanded by my landlord. I became a hermit after leaving work, ignoring my phone and burying my guilt in layers of unwashed hoodies, empty pill bottles and half-eaten pizzas. I was disgusted with myself for even trying to find happiness, giving into my desires and finding random partners for hollow sex. None of those were “good” feelings, but they weren’t nothing. I wasn’t happy, but I wasn’t empty. I told myself I was empty, but I wasn’t empty.

Today I woke up early. It was warm outside for an Ohio October day, so I took a walk. During my walk, I watched the sun break through the trees lining my street, and I saw kids standing on the corner, waiting for the bus, and at least 3 joggers passed me over the course of 10 minutes, and 2 dogs were being walked, and lawn care providers were beginning their days, and when I made it back to my apartment I realized I wasn’t a part of anything. Things were happening all around me; life was happening, but I wasn’t a participant. I saw everything from the outside, because none of it meant anything to me. I should have been upset about this, but I didn’t feel anything. I thought I’d be mad at myself, but I didn’t care. I thought I’d be sad, realizing I had no place in this world, but I didn’t care. I thought I’d swallow a bottle of pills, drown myself in a cold shower, and text my boss an excuse as to why I wouldn’t make it into work this week. But I didn’t care.

I couldn’t feel anything. I could see all the same things, draw all the same conclusions, and land on the appropriate emotion I should be experiencing, but I couldn’t touch those feelings.

I often thought I would end up in such a rage I would accidently throw myself off my balcony, or make a cut so deep I would bleed out in my bathtub. I thought I would feel so sad I would swallow every pill in my cabinets, and let those little medical wonders take me away to a new Hell. I thought I’d drink until I couldn’t speak, and try calling him again, hoping that after all these years he might pick up, just so I could hang up the phone the second he said hello, and a split second later I would put a bullet in my brain without ever telling anybody goodbye.

I thought I would die from those feelings, that all the sorrow and rage would drive me into a corner until I had no choice but to end it all. But I never did. I kept on going, and those feelings kept on flowing through everything that I did. I wasn’t empty, but I was being hollowed out. It took years and years, but I finally see what the end is.

I felt so much that all I wanted to do was die, but that was rooted in a desire to escape, and I wanted to escape because deep down I wanted to live. Now, I don’t care if I die, and that’s rooted in a lack of any desire to live. Dying isn’t an escape, it’s just another path, another way to reach the finish line. I could do it 5, 10, 50 years down the road, and it wouldn’t change a thing. So why bother? It doesn’t matter. Today is as good a day as any, so why not now? Why not make today my final day?

It doesn’t matter, so I might as well just die.

“Something is only considered trash because someone comes along and labels it as trash. So when I say I’m trash, it’s not that I’m inherently nothing, but after 20 some years of experiences, I can’t define myself as anything but trash.”

There was nothing I could have done..

~Do you really believe that? That there was nothing you could have done, nothing at all?~

I just wanted to be loved, to feel what love was supposed to be, that forever and always type of love that grows stronger each day, bringing smiles and family and so much warmth…I just wanted a love like that..

~You had it, all of it, and you know you never deserved it, but you got it anyway, you lucky bastard. And now you are blaming fate, destiny, God, for the outcome? You had all the help in the world, and even still, you lost! You lost EVERYTHING!. That’s not destiny, that was YOU! ALL YOU! THAT WAS ALL YOUR FAULT, JUST.. just you..~

So I never could have held onto it, because that’s who I am, huh? I can’t feel comfortable. I’ve never felt comfortable in my own skin, seeing the world through my own eyes… So no matter how much the world gave me, I could never, ever, hold on… I couldn’t, I never could have…

~We’re just a pile of excuses; walking, talking human debris. No, we’re even less. We’re less than garbage, less than dirt.. The lowest of the low…We’re truly the definition of a scummy, wasted, worthless existence..~

I don’t know why I bother.

It’s 85 degrees outside, and the air in this old office isn’t what you’d call “top notch”, so my shirt is sticking to my chair, and my shirt sleeve is stained with forehead sweat. I walked in, sat down, and the heat made me sick within minutes. I’ve been up to empty my guts 3 times since 8AM, and it’s not even lunchtime yet. To make matters worse, the bathroom is right behind our offices most populated set of cubicles, so whenever I must go, everybody sees me get up, walk over to the bathroom, disappear for 10 minutes, only to return looking like I just finished a few rounds in the ring. Repeat this 3-6 times daily, and I’m sure everybody is disgusted by me. I wash my hands, and come in wearing decent enough clothes, and shower and have deodorant and brush my teeth, etc. etc. However, all of that is thrown out the window the second you notice the fat little Asian of the office seems to be taking enough shits for everyone on the payroll. At first, people will chalk it up to being lazy, thinking I must be wasting time on my phone, texting friends, browsing social media, playing Pokémon Go like a true American. That line of thinking evaporates quickly the second somebody talks to me though, as it becomes painfully obvious just how socially inept I really am. My co-workers quickly come to the conclusion that I’m not wasting my time on my phone in there, because it’s impossible that I could be holding a conversation with another human being, even if it was just a Facebook post or a stupid tweet. No, this…person? Yeah, I guess I’d still be considered a person. Anyway, the barely person that I am is either shitting their brains out (true), or using alone time in the stall to cry where nobody can see, giving her the strength to get back out there for at least 45 minutes before her next mental breakdown (also true). What can I say, I’m a multitasker? Between the heat, diarrhea and a lifetime of self-loathing, my body can shift from raging volcano to bottomless Antarctic pit in a matter of milliseconds.

At the beginning of the Summer, my office hired interns. We hired young, attractive, high school interns. They all sit together, and they all do the same thing (nothing, because what high school junior knows enough about anything to be able to offer any help to anybody?). I sound mean because I’m bitter. Honestly, they are nice kids. They got here 2 weeks ago, and they try. I’ve shown 2 of them a few tricks with Microsoft Excel, and traded 1 of them 4 quarters for a ripped dollar bill that our vending machine wouldn’t take. Aside from those 2 moments, and introductions when they all started, I haven’t spoken a word to these kids. And I’m not just saying that, I’ve counted, because that’s what I do. I am so self-conscience about everything that is me, that I know exactly how many times I’ve spoken to everybody in my office. Aside from my boss, that number doesn’t exceed 2 digits for anybody. It’s all my fault as well. When I started, people tried talking to me, made attempts to help me “fit in”, but within the course of 1 or 2 conversations they realized the folly of their ways, and thus my self-induced work isolation cycle began anew. Back to the interns; they aren’t bad, and I don’t think they want to hurt my feelings, but they are still in high school, and what high schooler could resist making fun of such an easy target? They weren’t being loud or spreading rumors around the office. They weren’t even being pointed about it; I probably only noticed because I’m special tuned to pick up any and all negative things said about me, along with being able to filter anything positive into something neutral or negative. So, these high school kids see me coming out of the bathroom for the 4th time today. It’s 2:14PM, and I haven’t finished any of my work for the day, and my nose is all runny and gross and I know I’m sniffling so much it must be disgusting to have to hear, and I barely catch it, and I could just ignore it, but it’s me, so that’s not actually an option. My ears are advanced radars, and what they pick up…it’s really just laughter, right? It doesn’t have to be about me, right? But I can’t block out the words. I want to block out the words, but I can’t. It’s not even that mean, really. I already know my sniffling is gross, so the suggestion that I learn how to use a tissue is actually just good life advice. My body is a science experiment gone horribly wrong, so pointing out that so many trips to the bathroom in a day means I must really eat some terrible shit at home is 100% accurate. And yes, my hair is rather ugly when I wear it short. And yes, it was much better last week when my long hair covered my gigantic ears. And of course, it should go without saying, but they say it all the same! I must live alone, because who could put up with my painful, disgusting, awkward ass! They might be kids, but they have eyes that work just fine, and they aren’t afraid to call it like they see it. And like I said, they didn’t say this at a volume where they knew I could hear it. And what they did say was actually rather tame versus what I’m used to from high school kids. But my broken ass body reacts before I can stop it. My empty stomach drops down to my knees, and I become aware of how much oxygen I’m wasting on my fast breathing. My arms start to shake a little, then a lot, and then I have to stop typing or writing, and I do my best to keep my these fists from punching myself silly. I feel my body collapsing in on itself in an attempt to shrink the target that is me, but I’m unable to forget my own mass, and I can’t stop starring at the rolls on my stomach as my head flirts with banging into my desk. But the worst of it is that slow creeping chill. It’s born from my chest, and it eats through my veins, swallowing blood and shitting out reminders of every little fucking thing I hate about myself. The sensation creeps through my arms, and all of my scars start screaming in unison, and I’m embarrassed! I’m so fucking embarrassed! I’m so sure that everybody can see them, even though I put so much effort into hiding them! Even though I always remember to wear long sleeves everywhere I do! Even though I’ve tried every scar cream known to man to get them to fade! But what good will hiding, or covering, or even erasing them do, when I keep adding to my collection! And just as that realization leaves me feeling naked, the cold flushes through my back and legs and head, and I shiver like I’m building a snowman in my birthday suit, and I have to stop, I have to find some way to stop, just stop me, just stop everything that is me. I need to grab the scissors in my desk, bang it into the wall, and throw myself head first into those blades. I need to throw my chair through the window at the end of the hallway and follow it down, straight into the parking lot pavement. I need to run back into the factory, find the largest, most dangerous looking piece of equipment, and do whatever it takes to get it to kill me. Fucking kill me. I fucking need to die, right fucking now. God, I can’t take this anymore, not for another second, I can’t handle it. I can’t handle life, I never wanted to live, I never wanted to be this fucking thing that I am. Please, I just need to die. I want to die. Kill me. Fucking let me die…please…

The overwhelming urge to commit suicide fades along with the chills, but only to a tolerable level, and only to a level I would describe as tolerable. It’s roughly 2-4 minutes of me at my desk, hoping nobody walks by to see me silently freaking out. After 5 minutes, I’m calm enough to be my normal, awful self. Of course, I’m just repressing my feelings, so I already know when I get home shits gonna hit the fan. But I’m used to this. It used to be a once in a while sort of deal. Then it grew into a monthly deal. And from monthly to weekly, and weekly to daily. Yes, this is an everyday thing. Honestly I’m happy if it only happens once a day. I’ve literally run out of fresh skin to scar, so I’m overlapping, creating patchworks to replace those solid, parallel lines. I’ve run out of skin, and patience, and any sense of self-love…no, I’ve just ran out of any sort of love at all…

I always told myself that a life without love isn’t a life worth living. I’m finding out that’s 100% not true. My life wasn’t worth living long before I ran out of love. Now that I’m out of love, I’ve just become a ghost. I want to die, but I can’t kill myself. I want to kill myself, but I’m afraid to die. I thought that if I had nothing left to love, I wouldn’t care if I died. Turns out, if you have no more love, you have nothing left to fight away the fear. And I’ve been out of love long enough to be neck high in fear…and I keep hoping that the fear will keep growing, eventually letting me drown. But I know fear…it won’t ever let me die…it will keep me on the brink, keep me begging, but it won’t let go…

I hate this…but it’s all my doing…I destroyed all of my love, instead feeding all of my fears. This is what I am now; fear is all I have.

But…

If there is a God, then please…

Please, God…kill me.

I’ve stretched out my soul to widen my shadow, the only part of me that seems to understand how much of a fool God must be for creating this bullshit.

The Summer flickers into the year with lingering regrets;

A medley of melted marshmallows and perfume laced bug sprays.

It’s not a storm like the Spring, raging in, forcing growth and change, no.

Summer stumbles with no direction, as if lost in all this sunlight,

As if the added hours of daytime and sweltering drafts have incited a lethargy

That takes a provenance in refuse cartilage of swollen anatomies.

It’s not Hell on Earth, it’s just Hell.

“People can break into pieces, and every single one of those pieces still has enough of us to feel, enough of us to love, enough of us to break again…We may only have 1 life to live, but in that life, a person can die more than once.”

I tried to wash this all away in a rush of pills and alcohol. It was one mistake to match every other mistake I’ve ever made, and all to soon I hit the bottom of every bottle within arm’s reach. The only thing worse than hitting rock bottom, is hitting rock bottom to fast. I’m already out of options, but the drugs haven’t taken full effect. I’m still capable of thinking and feeling, and since I am already at the bottom, I have nothing left but time.

Time is the enemy here; it always has been and always will. I’m at the bottom, but time followed me down, so now all I can do is wait. And waiting is the worst. I’m just waiting for the pills to poison my blood, light a fire under my skin that demands release. I’m just waiting for the alcohol to flush away any lingering, rational thoughts, leaving me to choke on sour breath and unvoiced regrets.

Yes, it’s all a waiting game now, the only game I seem to know how to play, and the only game you never have a chance to win. Every second I’m left waiting for the high to rip away my senses, a palpable fear filters its way into the cracks of my remaining humanity. I’m trapped in this crumbling reflection, and its hell. This is the lowest level of hell. This is the boiling sulfur, fire and brimstone, pray to your God and every God for just a shred of mercy, type of hell.  

Yet, through it all, time still crawls forward, and it drags my sorry ass out of that pool of fear and into an Ocean of nothingness. I blink up at the sky and wonder if I’ve gone blind, because whether my eyes are open or closed, everything looks the Goddamn same. I try to listen for something familiar, but as I strain my ears, I realize I can’t even sense a whisper from this saltwater room. I want to lift my head up, or sit up, or just wiggle a toe, but this saltwater is binding my exposed skin to the unshifting brine. I am trapped, and for a split second, the fear I’ve been swallowing swells, eclipsing my everything, and nothing exists outside of this gaping mouth of hopelessness that stands ready to swallow me whole.

But that second passes, and I’m just alone. I’m alone, without even my own thoughts for company. Nothing can reach me here, at the bottom of my upside-down Sea. Nothing can touch me, or burn me, or scare me. Nothing can choke me, or poison me, or rip me apart. Nothing can hurt me, because there’s nothing left in this world to hurt, because I made sure, I made damn sure, that I left myself nothing…

And even with nothing…I still wake up.

I know it wasn’t just a bad dream. I know that hell, that fear, that painful absence of any hope… I know they are all very real…but every time I do this, I still wake up.  

I know enough about my own shitty person to know how much is too much, and I stop short of pulling the trigger every time. Every stupid time. Every single stupid, fucking chance I give myself to get out, I fucking stop short! I’m right there! I can fucking see the end RIGHT FUCKING THERE! BUT I CAN’T DO IT! I CAN’T FUCKING DO IT! I CAN’T!!!!!

…I can’t do it…I should do it…I want to do it…but I can’t do it…

And it hurts…it hurts so goddamn much…