Ever have one of those nights when your head just won’t shut up? Voices and people crowded inside my mind last night and refused to let me rest. Ghosts, shadows, and harpies clawed at my subconscious until I woke with a headache and a guilty conscience. Last night, or more accurately this morning, I remembered all of the people I’ve done wrong, and all of the people who have done me wrong. It was a who’s who of mistakes and broken promises.
I remembered people I loved but couldn’t tell. I remembered people I couldn’t love who loved me. I remembered people I loved who rejected me. And I thought of how I’ve disappointed myself.
I wish I could think of all the people I’ve hurt and apologize to them, and I wonder if the people who hurt me would do the same if they could. I’d like to think that I would be big enough to accept apologies from those who killed me softly over the years, but I can’t say for sure that I would. I wonder, too, if I’m obsessing over this stuff because I forgot to take my anti-depressant the day before yesterday.
That’s something that all medicated depressives go through: Am I rejecting my true self for an emotional palliative? I don’t know if I was passionate and kinetic or just sad and angry about everything before the meds. I know I got to a place where I couldn’t function at all. I had stopped writing poetry before I took medication. Now, I feel a wide variety of emotions, not just varying shades of pain.
But the doubt is still there. I wonder if I would be as prolific a writer as I used to be if I went off the meds. Then, I wonder if I could get out of bed if I stopped taking them. I can still write. The words still come in the steady stream through which they’ve always flowed. The ideas still spark. Maybe I don’t write poems any more because I am finally content.
The poems I wrote in the past always despaired of love, mourned disconnection, writhed with desire. I’ve never been able to write a decent poem about someone who loved me back. Maybe that just feels true, even though it’s not.
To all the people in my head, I am sorry and I forgive you. Sometimes, it’s hard not to dwell on the past.