I always enjoy October. It’s the time of the cheesiest of holidays, but more to that, it is also a time of change and darkness. Night falls sooner, and the blanket of night seems to smother in its inky blackness. The stars end up blotted out, as the night sky fills with impenetrable layers of clouds. The moon gets that glow about it, a glow that only seems to come in winter. It’s that foreboding kind of appearance that causes you to shudder if you stay out in the woods too long, just long enough to catch sight of it through the tree branches, seemingly skulking about.
Things have been looking up somewhat. I’ve been consciously trying to rid myself of the poisonous thoughts that threaten to chip away at my resolve. I’ve found it’s harder being unemployed than it ever was to be so; the judgment is funny. I have been making enough money without a so-called ‘real’ job, but it is more or less my dirty secret. I’m venturing deeper and deeper into darker territory, with no plans of returning soon, if ever. The secrets, which once were so esoteric and beyond me, are now mine to grasp. I’m no longer afraid of going too far. I find keeping myself so locked away is appealing; I can stand back and laugh, because in the end I have an evil little secret, and it is all mine.
I’m caring less and less about things that I once considered important. I don’t know whether these things will return or not, but for now everything is so fucking inconsequential. I don’t care how I look, I don’t care how I feel. Most days I don’t bother to fix myself beyond showering. I neglect my hair so much that it becomes matted and unmanageable. I was blonde for the longest time, something I spent several hundred dollars achieving, then a month ago I decided I couldn’t stand looking at it. I cut it all off and dyed it black, halfheartedly. Now, again, I find that I hate it. I hate dealing with it, and I hate having to brush it before I go anywhere. I hate having to find clothes that aren’t dirty. I’m to the point where I now walk over to my boyfriend’s side of the closet and wear his clothes because they are loose and baggy and I feel like when I wear them I don’t have to think about it.
I don’t want to be beautiful or memorable or anything. I want to be someone who walks by and is forgotten about, so that I can get on my way. Going to the store feels like an exercise in patience, where I’m forced to grudgingly speak to people I can’t stand. Each time I leave the house I run into three people I know, all wanting to know how I am and where I’m working now. It didn’t matter to you before, so why should it matter to you now? I know you don’t care, that’s why I’m standing across from you, completely uninterested, but going through the motions so that I can continue pretending like I’m normal and nothing is odd about me. You all believe it, because it’s that fucking easy. I can be an asshole and you still believe it. All the small talk is an exercise in futility, because no matter how far you try to dig, I will not give anything away.
I like being able to go home and sleep next to someone who doesn’t expect anything of me beyond some dinner and a few hours of time together. I didn’t know that it could be like this, that there could be someone who will just…be there. Even my parents failed me miserably in that respect. There always seems to be conditions when it comes to love and loyalty, which is probably why I loathe both so deeply. Something is always expected, no matter what. Nothing comes freely, especially love. I didn’t understand it at first, his complete acceptance. I thought it was a lie. I still question it at times, yet as the days pass and as I continue to stagnate and lose myself in art, he comes closer instead of farther away. Somehow, our relationship is deepening, getting closer to the core, even as I seem to be slowly losing my battle to stay away from all the darker things that I desire.
It’s funny, but I once offered someone this same existence: do what you will, if only to be with me. And now that the tables are turned, I find it so much more frightening. I’ve known desperation, I’ve known that feeling of absolute insanity, where it’s either you have this person or there’s no reason to go on. Somehow, this is very different. I love, certainly, but it is measured and sane. It means more because it is level and true.
Or is it? I fear at times that I have reversed positions, becoming the apathetic partner to the clingy one. But I know that I am not him and things are different. My partner is not me, and he will not degrade himself to the point of desperate acts. I look back now with a sense of dread. I never again want to be in such a position, where I allow someone to become my lifeline. We all must stand on our own, regardless of how difficult it might be at times. I have always been the stronger one, and at times I faltered with that. It was my own doing that I allowed myself to weaken to such a point. I am ready now, for all things, and going into that blackness doesn’t scare me anymore. It is what it is, and I have the scars to show for it.
It’s strange having someone wait for you at the end of the tunnel. I am not stupid enough to expect it, but it comes as a welcome relief, and I will treasure it while I am lucky enough to have it.