If last year
The dreaded 2016 that everyone treats as a beast, is a story
Then the beginning would be January
This poem, by that extension, is my rendition of this story
A story of ordinary chaos
I started out like anyone:
“This year will be my year!”
“I can do better!”
“I will make an honest effort to become a better person!”
Sentiments that fade quickly as you become distracted by the reality of the world
A world that doesn’t care about your resolutions or what you think
It takes and demands and you had better keep up,
Keep up now! Hurry up!
Don’t drag behind!
Don’t you dare stop!
Those phrases filled my head for months
In fact, they were of the few phrases and memories I allowed in my head
Panic, anxiety, worry?
They became my normal state of mind.
I gave into them, let them control my entire being.
My body ceased being my body
It was now just a vessel of emotion and nothing more
And I payed for it
Do you know how it feels to forget?
To feel so many things that you forget dates you should know?
Anniversaries, birthdays, due dates, holidays, weekends, the last time you saw a friend?
The last time you ate, what you just said 5 seconds ago, or was it 6?
Whether or not you actually did something, who your childhood was spent with, the names of places you love?
Oh, you remember them after the fact, but there’s so much panic that you question yourself.
Memories become like theories you can’t prove.
It all overtook me as summer struck.
Sure, no more classes.
No more homework.
One summer class, to get it out of the way early,
A portfolio to work on
A summer camp to attend
Projects you want to finish...eventually, probably possibly, maybe, at some point….definitely
And a wall
The wonderful invisible wall that we call depression
I spent half my summer forcing myself past these.
Or, well, rather letting my thoughts run wild as I distracted myself with bright pointless images on a bright screen.
“It’s not that bad.”
“We’ll get to sleep again soon anyways.”
“So many people have it worse, quit pitying yourself.”
“It’s all in your head just stop.”
I would let these circle my thoughts until I found a way to push myself past these
It lasted, for a little while…
Welcome to august
The starting of school
“Where are you going to college?”
“What do you want to do with your life?”
“Have you applied? What about accepted?”
“Have you looked at scholarships yet?
The stress was back and my emotions couldn’t handle it
Old habits die hard, I guess.
I slipped back into distraction and let emotions run everything
I gave up
If I watched the news, I accepted the fact that I would fear the world based on what was said
If I had a big assignment, I accepted the fact that it would make me sick worrying about it
If I said something wrong, I accepted the fact that it would haunt me
Even if everything went right, I accepted the fact that I would doubt just about everything about it
September, October, November, December
My body looked the same and no one saw the difference
They couldn’t see what was piloting my thoughts.
Holidays passed, the trio of emotions dragging depression into the mix
Finally New Years hit.
It was done
the awful year over.
Midnight hit and the thunderous sound of fireworks filled the air, making it seem as if they universe was complaining of the misfortunes of 2016
And standing on the driveway, staring at a sky filled with sound and void of light
Just as the fireworks were out of view, so was how things really worked
I realized it right then and there
January 1st, didn’t mean I would suddenly get better
It didn’t mean I didn’t have problems anymore
That began to fully sink in
Remember how I said the memories come back to you, eventually?
I didn’t lie
Sitting here now, I’m recalling it all. Details I didn’t remember earlier things I forgot.
Friends that share the same problems as me.
People who might have the same thought process as me
Things we said in joking but, at that moment, we really meant it
Problems dismissed, emotions sealed off, struggles had by many, pain, hope, love, confusion, anxiety, fear, determination, lies, promises, people, places, feelings, apologies
I remember all that now
The End, right?
Nope, not at all and that’s what hit me.
A new year isn’t a new story. It’s just the next chapter and you have to keep going
The world doesn’t stop but neither do we and so I have to keep going
I know it’s chaos but I’ve accepted that it’s normal, but I’m not giving up
I’m going to reach that next chapter.