Thick Chunky Paste

What does it feel like?

It feels like I am having an argument with someone who just keeps repeating the same phrase, ‘something is wrong.’

On most occasions nothing is wrong, but my mind fails to understand clear objective facts during these bouts with OCD. A minor inconvenience that may be seen as benign or miniscule to others ends up expanding into a swirling vortex of clenched teeth and second glances for me.

There is no calm.

The thought of failure is constant. It pushes out happiness, desires, daily tasks, simple cognitive functions, and the bigger picture. Everything funnels down into a thick chunky paste of fight or flight.

Nothing is wrong.

But what if something is wrong?

This constant dialog loops in my head. I can’t control it; it’s a rollercoaster without any breaks. Unfortunately you’re stuck on the ride until it stops on its own.

How long does that normally take?

Depends; sometimes a matter of minutes, other times it can last an entire day.  Up, down, left, right, over and over. I’d be surprised if my brain had a stem, considering how much it spins around in my head.

You lose sight of who you are and reduce down into a puddle. Comforts ease the tensions occasionally; food, porn, music. Yet, even with the screams blaring in my ears I can still hear the monotone voice echoing from the distance-

Something is wrong.


 

Sometimes when I am having a prolonged grapple with OCD I’ll type out my conversations with myself. Helps to drain the soup from my head, plus it makes for an interesting read later.

Underwater Basket Weaving

How quickly we come to an end.

While I try not to focus too extensively on the inevitable realities of death, it is hard for me to overlook how quickly we vanish from thought once we pass. Our actions, experiences, memories, ambitions, are flipped off like a light switch. While acquaintances can certainly carry on with the reflections of our life for the years to follow, what happens when those individuals pass as well?

There is nothing more surreal than throwing away the possessions of a deceased loved one. Old books, magazines, tchotchkes, items once held in the hands of the living, now void of significance because the hands are no longer there.

My grandfather passed away a decade ago, and recently we have been acquiring possessions of his as my grandmother relocates to an assisted living facility. Many of the objects consist of old books about World War 2, which he had been an active service member, uniforms, dinning sets, cabinets, and photographs. While I had developed my own assumptions of who he was as a person simply from my visits with him as a child, riffling through his belongings has given me a better understanding of his character.

Blueprints of his house which he had built by hand, grocery store receipts he had used as bookmarks, letters from his past wife regarding his extramarital affairs, newspaper clippings about the unionization at his workplace. He was a hard-nosed, republican hating, womanizer, and abusive father; and here I was, throwing his possessions into boxes to be donated. I did not feel upset by this process, but rather it turned my attention toward my own sense of being. Scrap by scrap, his existence was disappearing.

What happens when the pages begin to crumble?

What happens when the photos begin to fade?

What happens when I too pass?

His life will be but whispers in the wind, a legacy forgotten, a name not remembered.


 

My mother, who aspired to be an artist as a child, was constantly belittled by her father regarding her dreams to make art. His most infamous line being, ‘what are you going to do with art? You might as well take up underwater basket weaving.’

Do Flies Go To Heaven?

SLEEP

First you have the action of the crash itself; the initial collision and its’ subsequent reactions. With any high speed vehicular impact, the sheer veracity of a one-ton mass colliding with an equal body will immediately rip away at both the exterior cosmetic and interior structural metal of the car; peeling it away like soft tissue paper.  From this point, the seatbelt tensioners located within the vehicle’s cabin will engage and lock, and all airbags will deploy from their respected housing. The paint, now under immense pressure due to the shifting parts, begins to crack along the vehicle’s bodylines, inevitably releasing from the stress. These chunks of paint can range from the size of a penny to the average scale of a human fist. The rust that had built up under the car’s chassis is the next to fail, expelling outward from the wheel-wells in large plumes of brown soot. The velocity of the impact may result in the detachment of exterior accessories from the core structure of the vehicle; such as side-view mirrors, hubcaps, front fascia, and rear bumper cover. Dependent on the location of the impact, the forward momentum carried by the vehicle may cause it to lose tire traction; resulting in rollovers, sliding, and unforeseen impacts with foreign objects. With all of the momentum eventually slowing to zero, the vehicle will then come to rest; never to be driven again.

 

DO FLIES GO TO HEAVEN?

I had been watching it circle around the living room ceiling for the last two minutes. Occasionally it would swoop down toward me and attempt to land, though I would hastily swat at it whenever it got too close. More than anything it seemed curious, perhaps taunted by my agitation. It tried to catch me off-guard a number of times, sneaking along the back of the sofa where I sat, and slowly crawling on to my shoulder. I would catch a glance of it out of the corner of my eye and quickly brush it away with the back of my hand. It was certainly persistent if nothing else. Eventually it landed next to my laptop and sat; its body fidgeting as I continued to type on my keyboard. I briefly paused to stare at it while it diligently cleaned its wings; rubbing its front legs over its abdomen in a repetitious motion. Its head would twitch side to side as if it was attempting to straighten its hair before the next big journey; perhaps to make its way into the kitchen where loose vegetables casually laid in the open. I contemplated how old it must be, for it was much larger than the ones I typically see navigating around the house. Maybe those were its offspring. After our momentary gaze at one another, it jittered toward my hand and climbed on to my finger. Spreading its’ wings it took to the air, flying away out of sight.


 

I hate to break a writing up over the course of a couple days, so I’ve been experimenting with very short, quick writing sessions to keep my brain on its toes. By doing so, it becomes far less planned and more mind-mapping than anything else; which I enjoy.

Rinse & Repeat

The phone rang and my eyes shot open. I had been sitting in the living room attempting to motivate myself to write, yet failing miserably by falling asleep in the process. Typically when someone calls our landline it is a telemarketer that never leaves a message. However, the faint murmuring echoing from the kitchen let me know that there was life this time. After roughly a minute the message ended, only for the phone to begin ringing again. Slightly agitated, and knowing full well that it was probably no one, I rose to my feet and made my way into the kitchen. After three processions of ringing, the answering machine triggered. I stood next to it and waited with mild impatience.

Low and behold, and to no ones’ surprise, it was dead air on the other line. I let out a sigh and looked down at Tank, who was locked away in his kennel as punishment for eating a piece of taco bake from the garbage. I should have probably pushed it down further into the bag when I threw it out, knowing his tendency to dig around in the trash. If I was a dog I would have done the same I guess. I rolled my eyes and unlatched his kennel door, to which he sprang out and proceeded to run about in the dining room; squeaking his stuffed duck lodged in his mouth. I sluggishly walked back into the living room; the plastic sound of squeaks following me in toe.

It was a surprisingly beautiful day out, despite having zero urge to go out and enjoy it. I cracked the blinds open slightly and sat back down on the sofa; propping my laptop on to my knees. The empty Word document that I had attempted to fix prior to dozing off was staring back at me. I began to lightly tap my fingernails on to the keyboard, typing out the first words that popped into my head.

‘Butternut squash, kumquat, trichotillomania, exacerbated, dermatitis…’

I leaned my head back against the sofa cushion and watched the ceiling fan spin. I don’t know why it is so difficult at times to figure out what to write about. I try to let myself wander, spreading out my thoughts without a second glance; though today I was in such a dense fog. With my mind still pacing back and forth, I closed my eyes and listened to the rhythm of the fan blades slice through the air.

One, two, three; One, two, three; One, two…

The abrupt high-pitched shrill of the kitchen phone broke the silence again, and at that moment I started to type.

‘The phone rang and my eyes shot open.’