Sedative Hangover

I should make it very clear that I am not about to take a long walk off a short pier, regardless of what the following piece of writing might suggest. The words below are the result of temporary mind-scramble (not actual scientific terminology), a side-effect of medication I take very occasionally, which is infinitely preferable to relentless nocturnal anxiety attacks. I usually keep the contents of my brain to myself on those mornings-after, but it seems more interesting to let them out sometimes, in text format in a controlled environment. Make of this what you will. To be taken with a grain of salt.

– – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

It is not so much stream of consciousness as a subterranean river, tributaries and dark crevices and tunnels in the rock, unexplored and tight spaces.

If they lose their air supply, you must let go. You must not fight for them. You must save yourself. Only yourself. Let them sink and fall.

This is what it means to sleep with silence. This is what it means to cocoon your dreams in muffled peace and almost awaken, staring out from the centre of your mind through eyes glazed and slow-motion blinks that sweep across memories blurred.

This is how to mute the brutal moment when you thought “I am not a real person” and it felt like ultimate truth, like you finally understood, then started drifting around that realisation, caught in its gravitational pull and spinning through space and mud and fire on the surface of icebergs and blue.

The outside is as numb as the inside and you fall into imagined violence and blunt force trauma and delicate slices that gape open with delayed reaction smiles in your skin to challenge yourself to still feel something. Your body becomes an experiment in nerve endings even though you do this not to feel and you have nothing to prove to yourself beyond a scientific interest in how much you can experience without being truly affected.

It is daylight but there is no sun and the sky is grey. Grey seeping in through the cracks in the curtains. Grey soaking in to the cracks in your hands. Grey and grey and grey. But your head is not spinning and you are not defined by the speed of your thoughts and the fluctuating volume and pitch of your voice as you fight to articulate concepts that you have no words to wrap around.

You indulge a vague recollection of warm breath on your neck and being handed pills and a glass of water with a soothing murmur of “Sleep now and everything will be alright in the morning”. But the arms around you are your own as you carry yourself off to sink into comfort and quiet.

And you wake up wake up wake up but you don’t, not really, and everything is flat and you are breaking the fourth wall, whispering into the camera that isn’t there to the audience that is only yourself, “It is better to jump than to fall”.

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