Last month I spent hours scouring old blogs and journals from seven years ago. The years of my early twenties were scribbled onto pages in unassuming spiral notebooks and saved on the internet after being pressed into keyboards. It was a time of writing out of need. Out of heartache. Desperation. I wasn't disciplined or motivated. I was lost. Writing was wandering. Writing was searching. Writing became a way to carve my own path, a way to become found.
Over the last year and a half, I got lost again. I tripped and fell into a hurricane of self-hate and heartache and victimhood. I swirled in those emotions for months, clutching half-heartedly at anything that I thought might save me. Mostly: a man. Sometimes: words. Often some combination of sleep, running, travel, eating, spending, drinking, and sobbing.
In the spring, I started thinking I wanted the hurricane to take me. I didn't want to be in the world any longer. Didn't know how. Couldn't. There was a week in which I almost got struck by two cars at two different intersections while trying to cross the street. The cars both stopped short and I stared into the drivers' eyes and felt a longing--instead of indignation--burning in my chest. I wanted to be struck down. I wanted an external hurt to match my internal one.
I knew I needed help. I reluctantly sought it out.
Last month I spent four days a week in outpatient care instead of working. Coming down from over a year spiraling in a hurricane is no easy feat. It is not to be done alone. But I am standing on solid ground again now. I am learning to steady myself again.
But even though my feet are planted on the floor, I still don't know where I am. I am still lost. And I think it's time to write my way back out onto the path I'd started to carve before. Or onto a new one. Who knows?