Stranger in a Foreign Land

Most times when I log into my laptop these days, it's been so long that I have to complete a security scan in order to feel "safe" to proceed online. This bums me out because I'm all ready to write something profound but I have to wait while I check for these viruses that might be on my computer. They never are, but just that one time I don't, it might be there and who knows what lasting damage that can do to my computer and personal information. Who knows. Who knows anything, really. It's the start of a new year again.

Again. Again. Again.

My 37th year on this earth is rapidly coming to a close. Each year, the year before goes by quicker and quicker. This past year, though. It was a year. It was one of those defining years of my life that I'm still not sure will have a lasting impact but it was different. I changed careers. Completely changed. Most days I wish I hadn't. There. I'll admit it. My new career is hard and it's a boys club and it's an uncomfortable environment (yes, even after a year, I'm still uncomfortable). And it's not something I really believe will be able to fill that hole in my life of being needed and doing something important. Take today, for example. I was sick and it was so easy to call in sick...because I wasn't needed. Not really. I guess that is good because of all the years where I went to work sick because I was actually needed. But instead of feeling grateful for that slight freedom, I feel almost utterly useless in this world I've created. I've found that the more I am alone, the darker my thoughts get. If I'm alone for more than one solid day, it's hard to get up to do anything and I watch so much TV to drown out these thoughts.

Tonight, I'm letting them in because I need to change them.

I had a dream the other night about a silver pistol. It was a present from Jana. It was shiny and the end was long and skinny (sorry, I don't know much about guns). I took it out of the wrapping, with my family around me and felt the weight of it in my hands. I was confused why I would be given this. I knew I couldn't have a gun with these dark thoughts. In my dream, I looked up and I knew what it was for. It was so heavy. I wish I could be funny here and blame Hamilton lyrics for the path of this dream, but it was my mind portraying what would happen if I followed through with these thoughts. I've almost convinced myself there is nothing after this life. It would be easier if I truly believed that. I wish I believed that. My faith is small at this point. None of this is what I pictured my life would turn out as. I want to be positive. I want to be happy. I want to be of service in this world. I want to help others realize their potential. I want to exercise. I want to eat right. I want to sing. I want to share everything with one person. I want to leave Utah. Every time I feel like this, I return to my touchstone.


But I didn't this time.

I thought I had enough support here. But everyone has their own lives. And that's okay. Everyone has moved on to the next phase of their lives (family-wise) or moved far enough away from me that I don't enter their thoughts. And I can't ask them to drop their lives because I want to end mine. I'm the strong one, right? I'm the one who can do it on her own. All of it. I think there are more like me than we know of. Those forgotten ones. Who are strong enough. To live without someone else weighing in on their decisions. Who have no one who really depends on them. But if you think about it, that fact really makes you weaker. Because I have no one who depends on me, I have the freedom to completely ruin my life. And who does it hurt? Who does it hurt if I gain 50 pounds? Who does it hurt if I isolate myself from social interactions? Who does it hurt if I sit everyday, all day? Who does it hurt if I stay in debt? Who does it hurt if I keep having these destructive thoughts? Who does it hurt if I quit life? Me. That's who. Well, it's the start of a new year. Why don't I make some goals to turn this life around?

Because nothing ever changes.

I can make all the positive changes in my life, but the important things will still be missing. And that doesn't change. Ever. I've lost all the weight. My life was still the same. The only difference was men wanted to use my body. How will changing my body fix my life? As of right now, men do not want my body. So, at least I don't feel used. I don't feel like I'm only as good as the man who is pursuing me. But without that this past year, I've tried replacing that with work. And here I am. With these dark thoughts swirling, consuming and erasing sanity in my life. And I don't know how to change it. Everything I try seems to bring me back to this couch. Listening to music or watching TV and crying. I can't imagine feeling like this for another year. Why would I want to feel like this for another year? But I'll get up and go to work tomorrow. Stamp my time card. Put in my eight hours. Sitting, staring at a computer screen. Come home on the train. Get something to eat. Sit on my couch. Watch TV. Go to bed. Get up too early again. Go to work. Stamp my time card. Put in my eight hours. Sitting, staring at a computer screen. Come home on the train. Get something to eat. Sit on my couch. Watch TV. Go to bed. Oh, but here comes the weekend. I'll sleep in Saturday (if I can), finally get out of bed. Go upstairs. Sit on the couch. Watch TV. Get something to eat. Facebook. Sit some more. Go to bed. Get up. Go to church (because I can now). Sit in the back, smile to anyone who looks at me. Talk pleasantly. Go home. Sit on the couch. Watch TV. Dread the next day for the rest of the afternoon. Go to bed. Get up too early for work. Put in my eight hours and so on and so on and so on.

Even after all this time.

I feel like a stranger in a foreign land.

I need my touchstone.


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