To the voices inside my head:

February 23, 2011 § 2 Comments

Just shut up.

Sometimes the voices in my head get too much for me, and I have to feel like I am getting away from them — physically, at least. I don’t know how it started, but at moments of extreme turmoil in my life, the only thing that comforts me is being in motion. At various times, situations, and cities, I’ve found myself taking random public transport and going anywhere, everywhere. I’ve taken buses that took me two cities away, gotten off at the last stop, and made my way back home. In the worst cases, I’ve walked aimlessly for hours on end. I’d like to say my thoughts at these moments transcend to the profound, and that at the end of it, I get an epiphany and resolve my issues. In reality, the greatest value of these times is that my mind is blissfully blank — probably because the voices get caught up in the scenery, I don’t know. But what I do know is that these few and very rare silent hours are necessary for my continued mental health.

As is the norm this past month, I woke up at 04:00, my brain quickly going to overdrive about all the issues I am faced with, who else I should call, what else I could do. And as always, there’s just no point trying to go back to sleep after that. So I found myself, once more, on the bathroom floor, moderating a heated discussion between the voices. By 08:00, I had had enough. I took a scalding shower, shut down my laptop and mobile, 
and walked out the door.

To be fair, I had a destination in mind, this quiet little chapel that was surprisingly serene despite being smack dab in the middle of a mall. Don’t ask me why. I just knew I had to go there. So I walked. For an hour and a half. I started out walking briskly as I normally do, and gradually convinced my legs to slow down, that there was no rush, this time was my own. My thoughts only on whether the pedestrian lights were green or red, whether I should take this crossing or the one further down the road, whether I should take a right or left. And when I got to the chapel, I couldn’t think of anything to say to God. I found myself too emotionally depleted to plead my case any further. So I just sat there in silence, remembering to breathe slowly and deeply. My heart told me when it was time to get up and start making my way back. I knew that my problems would still be there when I got back to my tiny, windowless hotel room. I knew the restlessness would come back in a few hours, if I was lucky. But at that one moment, I was at peace. And when the voices start screaming for attention once again, I could just call to mind this feeling and drown out those crazy sons of bitches.   

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