Letters of Mass Construction

BROKEN

I am a broken. I have always been broken. I can not remember one moment in my life where my brain has ever left me the fuck alone. It has been all out war. There were a few times early in my life where my brain almost finished me. Moments where it just felt like everything would be better if I could make the noise go away.

I don’t talk about it often. I have mentioned it in passing. Some of my friends know it is there. My wife is aware but I have never really opened up to anyone. It has always been so hard to explain. How do you quantify despair? How do you describe a darkness so heavy that it feels like it is crushing the oxygen right out of your body?

I consider myself a thinker. I love knowing things. There is nothing more exciting to me than doing research only to discover something new and unexpected which spins you off reading in another direction. I spend a lot of time in my head. I think about my life and decisions I have made. Where I was and where I am now. I feel like I am winning this war. It has been a very long time since I have thought about not being here. I often joke that I am handling my shit about 80% of the time.

Then Robin Williams killed himself. I grew up loving Robin Williams. He spoke to me like few other artists did. Some of his stand up was a window right inside me. I cried a lot that night. I sat there and watched his movies and cried. I knew I shouldn’t do it. That I should distance myself but I couldn’t stop. I could feel the darkness surrounding me but couldn’t do anything to stop myself from not making it worse.

I may be handling my shit 80% of the time but damn that 20% is still a complete fucker. This week school started and I could feel the depression start to lift. My students are like medicine. So are my cats and running and reading and writing. So are my friends and family.

I am broken. I can’t change it. I can only manage it. I wish it was otherwise but I have to be ever vigilant. I suspect that my 80% thing is complete and total bullshit. I have come a long way. I still have a long way to go. Luckily, I am stubborn and love a good challenge.

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