It just feels as though every day I am surrounded by red hot pokers.
People I love are struggling. Thinking about the reasons for the their struggles makes me scramble back to distraction or anything else because otherwise I want to cry because someone is sick or because their choices are making them sick or because their mental health is really bad and there isn’t anything I can do to help.
People I love are hating. They are choosing to be mean and hateful and go out of their way to hurt people they don’t even know for reasons I can’t understand.
My country is fading. The heroic Captain America U.S. I grew up with is looking more and more like something Indiana Jones would fight against. Something the Avengers would defeat. Something we used to stand against.
Everywhere I turn there are burning, searing, painful places screaming for me to deal with them. All I can do is cower in the center of the flames.
It’s the holiday season and I want to crawl into a cave and hide from everyone I know.
It’s not you, it’s me.
I’m serious. You’ve done nothing wrong. It really is me. My inner goblin has been greedily grasping at everyone solitary moment I’ve been able to muster for the past month.
Her hunger is becoming insatiable. She wants to wander around a vacant room in no bra, loose workout clothes that are so soft with age they are practically see through, and soft socks so thick I’d have to buy shoes a size up to wear them out of the house.
She wants to binge-watch shows for days at a time or listen to whole books on tape without stopping for a single conversation.
She wants to go entire days without uttering a single word aloud.
As the days tick by to the greediest, gift-givingest day of them all my inner goblin is taking me over and urging me to run and hide and become one with my sheets and blankets. She turns my eyes from the sunlight peering through the window in the morning and pushes the phone away from me when a text comes through.
Wesley: To the pain means the first thing you will lose will be your feet below the ankles. Then your hands at the wrists. Next your nose. The next thing you will lose will be your left eye followed by your right. Prince Humperdink: And then my ears, I understand let’s get on with it. Wesley: WRONG. Your ears you keep and I’ll tell you why. So that every shriek of every child at seeing your hideousness will be yours to cherish. Every babe that weeps at your approach, every woman who cries out, “Dear God! What is that thing,” will echo in your perfect ears. That is what to the pain means. It means I leave you in anguish, wallowing in freakish misery forever.” – William Goldman The Princess Bride.
There’s a distinct sense of impending doom that has settled over life these days. It’s in the politics and the polluted air. It’s in the orphaned children splattered over the news and the raped women in the Ukraine. It’s in the loss of freedom for women here at home and the fear of impending loss of equality for everyone else.
There doesn’t seem to be a silver lining.
There are people celebrating hatred. Reveling in the misery of others. Indifferent to the death and harm caused to so many people because they want to force their will onto our choices like a rapist forces himself into our bodies.
They are bathing in the blood of strangers to protect a concept they don’t even care about once it becomes a reality.
They are blatantly hypocritical, demanding a seat at the debate table with lies, double-speak, and mis-information. They scream about having their rights trampled on when anyone tries to tell them they don’t get to lie on their platform.
They are toddler terrorists armed with the most dangerous weapon of all – zeal.
It is becoming harder to pull my head out from under the clouds. Harder to see sunshine. Harder to see a light at the end of the tunnel.