moments

Moments: Warm Winters Gloom

It feels like it is stuck there and it burns. My sertraline tablet. I take another swallow of water from my bottle and try and ease the remainder of the burn with my finger across my chest, massaging it slowly, carefully.

Happy cheers and smiles pass me by from men sitting on bicycles. Mothers pushing along empty prams as their children run ahead of them in a gleeful fashion, every now and again turning back to grin at their mothers as they keep pace with another child. And finally, couples hand in hand, pointing out the way the coast bends into Canary Wharf ever so slightly like a lopsided chuckle.

I feel as if everyone is out today, at least, a lot more people than usual. This made sense considering the sudden change in weather with the suns beautiful glittering glory gracing us as it must – quite suddenly and without cause. It was a great change from the usual – a gloomy and cold London, only ever covered from head to toe with blankets of rain. That is part of the reason why I’m out now, enjoying it as I know it won’t last long.

And also because I am just upset today. Tired and a little fragile because everything feels empty despite all this beauty around me. Depression has hit me once again and I needed to get out of my house before I spent all day in bed. I won’t spend all day in bed. I could never. Never again.

So I’m here instead, soaking up the warmth. Invisible to all but the vast space of water that lays in front of me.

It is the only thing that makes a change to how I am feeling.

moments

Moments: Just A Number

I often got that feeling of betrayal, of liberal shock when someone who carted me around work, held subtle exhibitions my way and treated me as a living sculpture pretended to know my name but didn’t. And only felt obligated to ask of my name when opposite me, with one gawky and awkward hand outstretched while the rest of the guilty but gleeful spectators stood a step behind, leaning in to hear my answer.

“Regina” I would say.

And a fake smile would be chalked across each of their faces as a chorus of ‘ooing’ and ‘ahing’ would ensue at such a moderately placed name. And the person leading the group would nod in appreciation, never once practising the name on his lips and congratulate me on what hard work I was doing. And I would say thank you because it would be impolite not to.

And as they would walk on with a casual glance my way, I would ponder at my place in this line of work. How valuable was I to them? How expendable?

And I was sure, in that moment, that I was just a number to each and every one of them.

moments

Moments: The Library

I’m in the library and I’m writing.

The pitter patter of the rain drumming throughout is distracting and I have to place my headphones in my ears in order to ignore it. Not that I’m playing any music as that would be equally distracting. You see, I had the tendency to analyse a song’s lyrics and or instrumental abilities quite thoroughly. No, I’m using my headphones as something to dampen the sound. And it does a good job until the rain intensifies and becomes an all disastrous force of nature against the windows of the library.

It’s a good thing I’m inside and the rain is out.

I evacuate my headphones from my ears as there is no longer a need for them. As I do so people begin to crawl into the library, bringing their chatter and whispers with them.

I guess I won’t be able to get as much work as I need to done today. No matter, that is why I have a book in my bag, just in case of small emergencies similar to this one.

I stare dimly at my copy of Juno and Juliet and smile. The cover, torn and ripped, stares unashamedly back at me. The light blue of the cover has been washed away of even more of it’s colour until it is has become a stale, powdery white. I wish I could say that it is in this state because it has been following me around for years like a much loved blanket, but that would be a lie. Despite loving it with a deep passion, the rips on the cover were not made by me, but made by a younger version of what I am now. A disastrous tyrant who somehow believed that in order to show your love for something it must show signs of wear. So, in a quick passion to do, this said tyrant fabricated a few of her own to show just how much she loved the novel.

Stupid. That was stupid.

Because now I’m left with a book that I’m not quite sure how to look after. I don’t want to tape it back together because I’m worried that it would destroy the already thinning cover. And I don’t want to protect it with a rain cover because there is still a part of me that believes that the scruffiness – for lack of a better word – shows just how much I love the book.

Stupid. Just stupid.

But, what can I say?

I guess I’m just a hopeless romantic.

moments

Moments: Lacking the Voice of Reason

Before I begin this Moments “vlog”, you should know that it may be quite triggering for those with an eating disorder. So, I’m saying this now:

TRIGGER WARNING: Eating disorder habits and depression mentioned. And of lesser importance, swearing.

Don’t say that I didn’t warn you…

———-

I made a mistake yesterday.

I ate at, or before, 1pm yesterday. Actually, it was most definitely before as I had been able to eat four bagels in two hours. And it wasn’t until I had eaten the last of the ten millionaire bites (caramel covered, chocolate topped, biscuit base bite size chunks) on the third hour at 1pm that I had realised how many calories I had consumed. I had consumed a lot and it began to freak me out.

Now, although I did not know exactly how many calories, I had somehow been able to stop myself from peering at the calorie content on the package of the bagels and recording the number.

I’m not sure if I should consider that an accomplishment, for it was not a noble act but a cowardly one. I was not only afraid to see the calorie content but also the nutritional one. Knowing quite well that I had consumed little, to no food of nutritional value that day had made me even more anxious than I already was. I didn’t need the confirmation printed into the back of mind with the specifics.

I wasn’t sure what to do, but I knew that I was frightened.

Usually, I would have exercised quite thoroughly for the next two hours – three hours if I could help it. All the while checking my weight on the scales periodically but… I was stopped. I was stopped by the nagging voice of my therapist erupting gently into my mind.

“Be kind to yourself” the voice whispered, while another voice, a little stronger and far more violent grabbed me by the consciousness and screamed in my mind’s ear “you fucking fat shit!” And so ensued an argument between the two. Imagine that, two voices battling it out in my head, one fading under the intensity of the other. And if you can imagine that, you will understand why I started to laugh. Hysterically. So much so that I began to feel tear after tear crawl down my cheeks while my laughs were interrupted by slight hiccups from the force of it all.

Quite honestly, I wasn’t sure what to do.

And I wish I could end this by saying I did the right thing, that I called up my friends and talked to them. That I continued my day as normal and ate something healthier when I was hungry in the next few hours. That I actually took a minute to reflect on how I was feeling and calmed down. I wish I could, but I can’t. I instead did the only thing I knew to do in situations like this. I took to my bed and folded myself into a tight ball underneath the cover of my sheets.

Oh, and think to myself in the dim silence:

At least I didn’t exercise.

moments

Moments: A Journey on the Outside

The clicking and groaning of the train distracted me periodically from the hushed whispers being spoken by the two ladies sitting opposite me.

Even though I shouldn’t have been eavesdropping, I couldn’t help myself. It didn’t matter anyway, I didn’t understand them. It took me a while to realise that they were speaking some form of broken spanish. And even when I did figure it out, they had noticed me looking and had decided to speak wholly in Spanish from that point on. Not that I minded, because I was half sure they were talking about what I was wearing. A skirt with a single cardigan, boots and a body warmer. I knew my mother would be in my face, giving me a right earful when she saw me dressed for warmer weather, but I couldn’t care less. Even though I knew I should as it was pushing a measly 4 degrees Celsius that day in London and I wouldn’t be too happy in an hour or two. But I would get over it soon enough.

Anyway, we had arrived at the last stop and it was time for me to get off, so I could stop worrying about what I was wearing being analysed in Spanish.

My phone buzzed twice with the arrival of a new message, it read:

From: Mama
Subject: (there was none)
“G, you don’t need to come, it’s been sorted out.”

Hm, well, I wish she had told me that before I had left the comfort of my bed quite hastily for the crippling cold of the streets. And yes, I’ll admit it now, my finger and face – if nothing else – were popsicles of ice by that point. A part of me wished that I’d had a small temper tantrum, refusing to leave home to help her, that way I wouldn’t have left so soon and would have saved myself the trouble of leaving in the first place.

I quickly typed a reply back to her, mentioning none of my dismay and accenting it with two ‘x’s’ before sending it. I looked around, trying to figure out what I wanted to do. Glancing up, I saw the signs directing me to the Central Line, so, I walked up the stairs at Stratford Station. I might as well take the train to the library if I’m out.

An instant later her reply arrived with a ping and a vibration on my phone.

From: Mama
Subject: (again, none)
“Love you G, God bless you”

I guess that’s mum in a nutshell because you can’t be annoyed at her when she says things like that. I typed a reply, just as quickly:

From: Gina
Subject: (none)
“Love you too, Ma. Take care! šŸ™‚ xox”

And with that, I made my way onto the Central line, getting off at my designated station.