Get Out of Your Own Way

My case manager said, “I wish there was something  I could do to help you get out of your own way.” Or something to that effect. That stung because it implies that I am not doing enough to help myself; but I understand what she meant. I am my own worst enemy. She also commented on my intelligence. I am intelligent. Sometimes, I think I’m too smart for my own good, book-smart, not common sense smart. I’m fairly retarded in the area of common sense.

I have enough accumulated knowledge to accomplish a lot if only I could somehow stay motivated long enough to accomplish something, anythingIf only I knew what I wanted to actually do. It’s frustrating. I’m 42 years old. My life is half over; my guess is more than half over. I don’t expect to get too many more years on this earth, not that I want to be here any longer than I absolutely have to be.

I hate thinking about the future. I choose not to. That’s why I rarely if ever set goals for my life or make future plans. To me, the future does not exist. I create the future as I go, moment to moment; so even in that sense, the future still does not exist. I live each day as if it is my last because it very well may be. Some days, I don’t know if I will make it. Those are the days when I question whether or not I will meet a natural death or die by my own hand. It’s not a great way to live, but it’s all I know.

I’m perfectly content most days doing what I do — a variety of activities that distract me from all the pain of this world. I’m not sure how many people actually “get” what it’s like to be so overly sensitive that you literally feel the weight of the world — all of its crushing, smothering weight as the darkness creeps in to drown you in sorrow — not sadness, sorrow. Let me clarify, this is not just my own pain and suffering that I feel. I can’t be around other people without feeling theirs as well. If emotions are intense, I don’t even have to be in the same room with them. It’s like I’ve tapped directly into the collective consciousness and feel everything. So much so, that I often go numb, like a severed nerve that’s trying to repair itself. There is no turning this off. This has been my reality for as long as I can remember.

And to be in the same room with someone who is experiencing intense emotions, well, let’s just say it’s no wonder I learned dissociation as a coping mechanism. As a case in point, the other day while I was standing in line waiting to check out at Wal-Mart (Wal-Mart is never a good place for me to be to begin with) a little girl, no more than 3 or 4 years old, began crying the most mournful tears I have ever witnessed. My eyes immediately teared up in response as I felt her pain, having no idea why she was even crying to begin with. Her mother asked her why she was crying. At first, she couldn’t say; but after a few minutes she said she wanted a candy bar. I seriously doubt the child’s heartfelt tears were so simple as manipulating her mother into buying her a candy bar, which her mother did not (kudos to Mom for that). This wasn’t the usual BUY ME THIS temper tantrum that I so often witnessed when I worked at a Wal-Mart years ago. Honestly, what I felt was more exhaustion. What I saw in this child’s eyes was that same familiar over-stimulation that Wal-Mart so easily induces in people without them even realizing it. And from the looks of their shopping cart, they had been in there for quite a while. Me, I was in line after only 10 minutes of shopping. Go in, grab what I need, get out. That’s all I can stand. Any more than that and would be that little girl crying in the check-out line.

So how do I get out of my own way? I have to figure out exactly what I want and what I need. For years, I’ve tried to do just that to no avail. Why should now be any different? If the motivation isn’t there, how could I possibly succeed in figuring these things out?


I should have posted the preceding part of this post Friday night when I wrote it, but I didn’t. I second-guessed myself. I left it in the drafts folder until now. There’s really nothing going on right now that warrants the extreme intensity of emotion that I am currently feeling. Sometimes, I’m told, that’s just the way Depression presents itself. There are a few things bothering me, but no one thing singularly justifies this sense of urgency I feel. More than anything, I feel like I keep repeating myself over and over again; and no one’s listening. The worst part is that I’m not sure I would even recognize if someone was.


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