Many times I have been given a chance to change things, whether that’s from finding a new friend group or being in a different environment. The trouble is that I don’t know what I need to change about myself to give myself a chance at a happy life. I can feel that there is something – there always has been, something that keeps me coming back to this place in my mind. I just don’t know what it is.
I like to think that given the chance to understand what makes me how I am, I would take it. But the truth is that I don’t think I would recognise the chance, because when I’m stuck in this headspace I struggle to see the choices I’m making. I do things and don’t understand why at the time, it can often seem like they just happen regardless of the course of action I choose – even though I want the opposite of those things to happen. I subconsciously self sabotage and prevent that change because I’m so used to things being how they are that I’m worried they will get worse as a result of my efforts to escape. I’m scared that I don’t know how to be any different and I’m doomed to remain this way forever.
These are my factory settings and I don’t have the administrator password.
Recently I’ve realised that I struggle to feel meaningful connections to people. This has always been the case, and as a result when I do feel a connection to someone I have a tendency to latch on to it. Those few connections I’ve felt have been some of the most important things in my life – frequently to a greater degree than familial connections. So when the longest standing connection that I had was tarnished by an event that still makes me want to let go of my entire identity even after a year, it put significant strain on the other connections that were interlinked.
I didn’t understand what it was until now, but nothing had really felt the same since. I could be in a room full of my closest friends and I would still feel alone. Almost as if I wasn’t really there. To those around me I probably just seem a bit quieter than usual or a bit more distant, but I have long been known for spacing out at times so perhaps they don’t see the change. While I still recognise that those connections are present, I find it hard to use them and be aware of their meaning. My trust in those I care for is gone; if he could do that then everything I thought I knew about anyone is up for question. I just don’t know how to be around people and let them in to my heart or mind anymore. It’s not just the pre-existing connections; there was a time when I would try to meet new people and forge new potential friendships, but now I don’t know how to let myself do that.
I’ve started a new job recently and my coworkers barely know anything about me as I can’t bring myself to open up to them or take an interest in getting to know them. The online communities I’ve been active and involved in for years now barely hear from me and when I am present they think of me as the quiet type – only saying anything when there is direct relevance or need for it.
To those that have offered support recently I will say this: I am not yet ready to trust again to the degree that would be required for the type of help you have offered. I hear you and I appreciate that you are concerned for me, but I need some time to heal on my own before I can learn to trust again.
A lattice of carvings sweep across the canvas. Both individually and together seemingly without meaning, yet each tells part of a story which gains cohesion when viewed chronologically. Time cuts another shallow channel through the space, making pre-existing tracks deeper and more defined. The two dimensional array of marks gains a third dimension which measures the weight of events. The further past their point of origin in time the less depth they have, until all that remains is a map of key moments.