Perpetual Horror

Life lately has consisted of constantly staring this horrific reality in the face and not blinking. Then, taking what I see and figuring out how to make it better, by going through even more horror – the horror that got us here – and finding the way out.

I read H.P. Lovecraft at night because the ultimate horror of which we do not name has nothing on this timeline.

I’m going through old bible stories and remembering things from my childhood. Like how my parents would rather that we had been raptured because they didn’t like who I was getting married to, and since I’d experienced love (and loss) I’d felt everything I need to for one lifetime. Or how they told us, multiple times that if god were to whisper that us kids should be killed, they would do so without hesitating. I remembered how my mom worshipped the women we knew who almost died in labor for their dedication and faith.

Only now do I see this as obvious signs of depression that they decided to go ahead and verbally pass on to their children. I’ve never been afraid of death and it’s a struggle not to see it as a blissful void, resulting in a much needed break from this cruel reality.

My optimism looks like: Well, things are shit and are going to be for ever unless we maybe do something about it, and that might not even work, or we’ll die before it happens, but we can say we tried, which is better than nothing.

I keep going, I keep fighting, because it’s all I know how to do and I haven’t managed to die yet. What matters most is what we do next, where we go from here.

Occasionally I have glimpses of what it must feel like to have a normal relationship to life. One where you really adamantly don’t want to die instead of being blasé about it. The one where stopping feels sad instead of restful. My parents ripped that from us by spending all their time talking about how great it would be if we were dead and in heaven instead of alive. It always bothered me, because like, we weren’t dead – and committing suicide/non-god-sanctioned murder meant you’d go to hell – so?

It’s really hard to find that right now. To be anything but nonchalant about dying and our dystopian future. In some ways, it almost feels protective. Like one less thing I have to worry about, because I’m generally meh about my existence. Life right now is mimicking my childhood on a much grander scale and pushing all the CPTSD buttons and I do not appreciate it. But all the coping mechanisms I honed while there, are back. I can press on, because it’s all I know how to do, and maybe, if I’m lucky, I’ll catch glimpses of things that feel vaguely hope-like again.

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4 thoughts on “Perpetual Horror

  1. Thank you for this. When I saw H.P. Lovecraft… I thought you were somehow referring to Harry Potter. That’s what I’ve been reading every day and watching every weekend in order to not feel like there is a 5 ton pile of shit on top of me. We will make it through. It won’t be easy, but for those of us who grew up in small town Texas, or any “small town USA” that were “different”… well we’ve been living in difficult our entire lives. We are strong, we will overcome. ❤

  2. Mmmmmmm this. Yes this. Wow.

    I’ve been feeling this and couldn’t put words to it. Thank you. All of my coping skills (including the “please punish me so the more marginalized/younger siblings” don’t have to bear the brunt of it. The unhealthy coping mechanisms along with the more helpful ones.

  3. Mmmmmmm this. Yes this. Wow.

    I’ve been feeling this and couldn’t put words to it. Thank you. All of my coping skills (including the “please punish me so the more marginalized/younger siblings” don’t have to bear the brunt of it.

    The unhealthy coping mechanisms along with the more helpful ones.

  4. You don’t know me, Kieryn. I just tried to friend you on Facebook. But I can understand your caution if you don’t accept.

    Someone sent me your autostraddle article awhile ago. Today’s political news made me think of it again. I just reread it and some of your Bridging the Gap posts. I just want to say, “You keep going, boi !” Thank you for your honesty.

    I am an outwardly conservative Roman Catholic Christian who believes in Perpetual Truth. That is the loving truth in all religions. I would love to correspond with you in a more private forum.