I know the title is a little cliché and more than unimaginative but what can I say?  I think that the simplicity of the title will become self evident as you read this short post.

Whilst I was full of self-pity and absorbed in my own little world, things without my sphere of influence carried on as normal.  I haven’t been in contact with most of my family since the death of my mother and am still in an unreconcilable state with both my father and my younger sibling.

My sibling, however, has been causing his usual band of trouble and recently that has included his own daughter.  My niece is a beautiful young woman, from Northern Ireland.  She has been a little spoilt, I’ll plead guilty to that but her upbringing has been disciplined and she has matured into a well mannered young woman.

Like all of us when we were (are) in our early twenties, she has had a bit of fun, parties and the like, even working in Spain for a holiday company catering for the needs of the young and adventurous.  She has had some boyfriends, but nothing too serious until now.  She has met a man she loves and they are now engaged to be married.

My niece’s fiancé wanted to do the right thing by her father and ask for her hand in marriage.  As my sibling often visited Northern Ireland to see his daughter, they decided to wait until his next visit.  When she phoned her father, he kept promising that he would be visiting later that month but the month passed and there was never a visit.  In the end, my niece and her fiancé decided that a telephone call would be better than nothing and may induce my sibling to visit his only daughter.

As if often the case, an accident happened.  Not the serious bodily accident that involves ambulances and hospital, but the less serious but just as serious kind.  She fell pregnant.

Is it me or does the phrase, “she fell pregnant’ sound wrong.  She didn’t fall, there was no falling involved, just two consenting adults doing what is natural.  She fell pregnant sounds as if she made a mistake all by herself.  Anyway, I digress.

As she discovered that she was pregnant a couple of months after she had conceived, she thought it best to let her mother and father know immediately.  Her mother was overjoyed, although not too keen on being called ‘granny‘ as I kept teasing her during our most recent telephone conversation.  Her father, on the other hand, was not as thrilled.  In fact he was positively unthrilled; dethrilled or whatever the  correct term is for this dichotomy.  As my niece told me, “he said that he needed time to think.  He told me that I needn’t contact him again.

I’m not a parent and never will be but to say something like that to your only daughter…??  Apparently he has called her since that first blow and landed more by calling her a number of unpleasant names.  As I have been called unpleasant names by my own father, more times than I can remember, I can empathise to a certain extent.  The difference is I never had any respect for my father and my niece idolised her’s.  To say she was upset was an understatement.

Now to the part about feelings.

I feel upset, angry, upset, happy and angry – very angry!

I have no idea how my niece feels about the way her father has treated her.  I know she is very upset (an understatement on my part) and she talked in detail of the in-justification and unfairness of it all.  To add insult to injury, why does a parent have to insult their only child?  Were his feelings hurt in some way?  If they were, did lashing out and potentially ostracising himself from his daughter worth it?

Feelings are, by their nature, subjective.  How I feel about my father does not compare and is in no way similar to the way my niece feels about her’s.

An analogy; something that gets me angry is when a friend is feeling unwell and they tell me that it clearly doesn’t compare to how I’m feeling.  Why doesn’t it?  If she feels unwell it doesn’t make it any less than how I feel.  It’s complete subjective, if she feels unwell, then it doesn’t make it any less or any more than how I feel.  We both feel unwell.  Does that make any sense?

Too many people nowadays care about one thing.  Themselves.  I had a discussion about this earlier today when someone told me that as long as you are happy then if someone doesn’t like it, then tough.  Unfortunately, life isn’t that simple.  If someone we care about isn’t happy about something then they can lash out and thereby make you unhappy.  You can try and hide how you really feel but you cannot kid yourself, not for long, anyway.

Feelings aren’t something that can be kept in isolation, either.  As I said, I feel a great many things about this incident as well as my own personal feelings about my own situation.  Maybe one is influencing the other.  It is more than likely.

I know that I have been harsh to people during my lifetime and during my many moments contemplating my life, I do regret my actions.  In most cases.  I have called a number of people and asked how they felt during those moments and have made many apologies, all too late now.  Feelings or how we feel about something, someone or whatever stay with us forever.  If we are especially sensitive those feelings can be irreparably hurt and the consequences long lasting.

I have read some posts, recently, about how some people have been hurt by the actions or words of others or because of how they have been treated by those that they thought had some feelings for them.  It saddens me to see so much anguish where they need not be any.

Life hurts, no irony intended.  I know that life isn’t all daisies and chocolate (not a simile you read often!) but we don’t have to go out of our way to upset people.  Maybe if we stepped back and thought about how other people feel before venting our own feelings upon them, maybe there would be just a little less hurt in our lives.

It’s a fantasy, I know.  When you are in a position of hurt nearly all the time, you want there to be less hurt, especially for others you care about.

If you take one thing away from this post, please let it be this.  We all have our personal feelings but try to think about the feelings of someone else before doing or saying something that may needlessly cause hurt.  Even if we hurt, do we have to lash out at someone else?  Easily said than done, I know.  Nothing says that we can’t try though, does it?

Think on it a little.  Just for a moment.  Thank you.

How Low the Mighty Fall

I thought I had worked it out perfectly.  I had alienated those few friends that I had and had the holiday of a lifetime with my partner over the New Year.  To that extent, everything worked perfectly.  I’d even purchased a new house for my partner and ensured that they would be financially secure for the rest of their life.   My closest friend stopped speaking to me, although she did send me a text about the new laws regarding drugs, and my partner had the holiday they had always wanted.

The final part of the plan didn’t go so well.  In fact it was a complete failure – twice.

One of the first thing I had been taught once I had been promoted to a position that required the management of hundreds of subordinates, was that when someone who is chronically depressed suddenly shows signs of happiness or acceptance then the alarm bells should sound.  It means that they may be considering suicide.  Once an individual decides that they are going to take their own life their attitude tends to be one that can be mistaken for happiness.

I had accepted my fate and, had it worked as planned, I wouldn’t be writing this post.

The first attempt was the easiest.  I just stopped taking the numerous chemicals I take each day just to survive and wait for my body to go into shock.  The shock should have been enough to stop my heart.  What I didn’t realise was that it took some time and not a small amount of discomfort for the shock to set in.  Unfortunately my plan was discovered just in time and measures were taken to ensure my ‘well being’.

The second attempt was the simplest.  I took a large quantity of morphine, in capsule form and let them dissolve into a hot drink.  The drowsiness took me quickly and the last thing I expected was to wake up in a hospital with people looking at me.  The amount I had taken should have relaxed my muscles immediately and the heart is a muscle. The amount of humiliation I felt was only compounded by the guilt and feeling of being a complete failure.  Mentally, I felt worse than before.  Physically, I was a complete wreck.  It has taken me nearly three months to get to some semblance of recovery and I am not in good shape.

On the plus side, I did lose some weight.

In a couple of days I will attempt to travel to my mother’s grave and try to explain why I was so weak and pathetic when she was strong and resilient.

It’s hard to imagine that eight years ago I was supremely fit, well educated, slim and had a potentially good future.  I wasn’t arrogant, as I was in my youth, but I was a confident individual and faced my problems head on refusing to give up.

Now, many years later I am the complete opposite.  A weakling, a failure and pathetic to boot.

There are many people who are in situations much worse than my own, who have faced horrors I couldn’t even begin to imagine and yet they persevere.  My mother was one such person, facing down cancer, heart failure and a stroke, still remaining positive although my weakness and lack of courage of my own situation caused her worry and stress.  To this day I still feel guilty about her early death and believe wholeheartedly that my self-pity key.

Now I have to live with humiliation and more guilt.  This makes me more depressed and it constantly plays on my mind.  Why had I failed?  Why had I even tried?  What had happened to the person I once was?  Why am I so weak when once I was so strong?

All these questions and more go through my head every minute of every day.  It’s a constant barrage of questions, self doubt, guilt and, above all, humiliation.

The irony of my situation has no bounds.  As I lay here writing this confession my closest friend, well she was until I alienated her, just sent me a text message wishing me a happy birthday for tomorrow!!  Happy is the last thing it will be but the fact that she still cares just adds to my guilt.

Yes, I know this is a completely self-absorbed post from someone who should just ‘snap out of it’ and get a grip on life.  Stop moaning “Woe is me” and make an effort to change matters.  Yes I agree with your thoughts and in my defence, over the years I have constantly tried to rally and each attempt left me worse off than when I started.  It’s been numerous battles of attrition and I felt as if I lost the war.

Now I am making another attempt, fuelled by all the self pity, guilt and let’s not forget the humiliation.  I am determined to beat this as I was determined all the previous times except with the realisation, finally, that there is no recourse.  I have no other options.  I will not even contemplate a repeat of my humiliation.

Yet I am not certain.  At the furthest depths of my being there is a feeling that it is all in vain.  My situation is permanent and nothing I can do will change that.  Whenever I push at the wall, it pushes back harder.  I know it’s psychological and yet the physical evidence is always there, reminding me that I am not the person I was and more significantly, reminding me how low I have fallen.

False Hope

images-4Yes it’s day 6 and probably the last entry I make for a while.  Like most everything else in my life, I am going to fail at the simple task I set myself.  I have no idea what was going through my head at the time.  Maybe it was some sort of euphoria resulting from all the supportive comments I had received.  Or maybe I was delusional in believing that I was feeling better.  I think both are fairly good reasons.

I will admit that while my spirits were high I was really enjoying myself, something that I haven’t experienced in such a long time I cannot even remember the last time.  I managed to put my pain out of my mind while I was working on the design for the header and then tried to think of an appropriately merry post to accompany it.

I was delusional.

When you come crashing back down to earth, you hit hard.  Reality reaches out and slaps you across the face until your delusional state is forgotten and you realise that no matter how much you pretend, the pretence can only last for so long.  The hole that I thought I was clambering out of  was deeper than I thought and although I did see a pin-prick of light, it soon faded as I fell back down and hit the bottom like a rock.

These last few nights have been so painful that I dare not move.  I was so angry with myself, so full of self-loathing and spite.  I’m pretending to be what I am not and in the meantime lying to you all.  I’m sorry for that.

There isn’t much else I can say nor really want to say.  I will just wrap myself in my own misery and continue as I have done for so long.  They say a break will do you good but the break I took was a falsehood that I thought I could maintain.  I was wrong, as usual.