I'm "on disability" and to some people this sounds like Heaven. I guess I can understand this, as work is usually hell. I've worked long enough to know that, but it doesn't provide a person like me with much comfort.
I miss the world. I miss the accidental friendships and stupid stories that come with being somewhat within the mainstream. I used to work the overnight shift at a Boston Hotel, and that job provided me with dozens of stories. One night, the groom at a Jewish wedding dropped dead 2 minutes after getting married. The night crew coming into the hotel at 11pm were all told to "look solemn" and not to laugh at anything.
Another night, I stood on a floor-buffing machine and turned it on when my friend Napoleon dared me to. I was thrown 30 feet away, and the security people came downstairs and said they would never erase that security tape; it was the funniest thing they ever saw. "John," a Gulf War I veteran was there.
I think I have a lot of funny stories from school and work. I was approved for Social Security Disability shortly after my heart fluttered and nearly stopped due to an overdose in Boston's Copley Square. John from the hotel was there, too, looking into my eyes and clearing the crowd around me. I remember that just before I passed out. After I was diagnosed with "severe anxiety and panic disorder, bipolar disorder, PTSD, and borderline personality disorder, dysthymic disorder, and severe depression," I was pretty much on disability. I didn't care. Now I do, and perhaps that's a good thing. Maybe one day I will work again. Maybe I won't.
But all that schooling went to waste. A shame they didn't know that the brain getting the education was rotted-out. They could've saved money and provided it to someone else. A bag of rats would've been better.
Since 1998, my first suicide attempt, I have become a person of no consequence, by design. Being a person of consequence is too taxing on me, apparently. I'm a shadow, and am totally irrelevent.
It may sound good to some of us, but it's not very much fun, to miss the living while fearing them. To want to travel but suffer from agoraphobia. It's a big, fucking joke. Dr. Gibbons used to take me out to lunch every week to talk about everything from politics to planes (he was a pilot). He was the chair of the Anthropology Dept. We especially like to talk forensic osteology. Gone now, though. A friend of mine at university told me I would make a great teacher. Can you imagine? I can't...Darren W. Lyle as anything but the living dead.
I do miss hope and potential. UMass Boston isn't my school anymore, and I have no workplace...I'm not emotionally capable of tolerating random human contact for long periods of time. So I have no place at all. I'm such an asshole.
Isn't it pathetic? To seek such comfort in memories? To be unable to cut new experiences out of fear and distrust of oneself.
The Mantra: Life will end one day, I'm not a bad person for being sick.