PAPERCHAINS

Do you remember when you had a left knee and a right knee?
But now you have a good knee and a bad knee,
A good hip and a bad hip.
I remember going to the hospital with my brother the day he made both his knees bad knees,
I’m not sure he should have been able to walk again
But they fixed it.
Bad knees became good knees and
Now he can use them to work crazy shifts
Or chase crazy girls.
Now he just has knees.

Do you remember when every day was a good day?
You’d go to school and come home and play and eat
And repeat that over and over and over
Except on weekends which were even better days
Morning cartoons, all day playing and even more food.
And sure, you have a bad day when you’re sick
Or have a test
But all you really know are good days.
Then you get older.

And maybe bad days are a good thing,
They make you appreciate the good days more.
even then “not everyday is a good day but there is some good in everyday”
Or so I’m told.
Because my bad days don’t make me appreciate the good days
They make me feel like they aren’t going to come around again at all.

My bad days string together like the paper-chains you make when you’re a kid
When you’re a kid and all your days are good days
So you have plenty of time for making things like paper-chains
On my bad days I couldn’t make a paper-chain if I tried
Because I can’t get out of bed.

Depression ties me down and
Anxiety sets fire to the floor.

Those aren’t even the worst days but I won’t talk about the dark days
The dark days explain themselves in letters I hope you never have to read.

Bad days are what I think and feel on good days
But intensified
Bad days are panic attacks and
“I’m so dizzy but I can’t make myself eat” and
“they don’t love you” and
exhaustion and
terror.

And it depends on which one wins
See I can spend the whole day panicking,
My heart and breath at speeds my legs could never take me,
Or I can feel nothing.
Absolutely nothing.

Do you remember having a left wrist and a right wrist?
I don’t.
I don’t remember looking down and seeing just wrists,
Now I have a good wrist and a bad wrist
And lots of jumpers and hoodies and cardigans and long-sleeved shirts
And excuses as to why I’m wearing them in the summer.
Why I don’t want to go to the beach
I just don’t like swimming anymore.
I think shorts look better with tights,
Because its not just my wrists.

My brother made both of his knees bad knees
Getting out of bed.
I made both of my thighs bad thighs
Because I couldn’t.

I wish this poem had a point.
I wish I could say I have more good days than bad days,
And my wrist is becoming good again and
My room is covered in paper chains
But I can’t.

I’m writing this to skip dinner.
I turned the heat up to make my veins bulge.

Update: I made a paper-chain.

(written 22/2/2016)

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6 thoughts on “PAPERCHAINS

  1. For 20 months i had bad days. Days that I swore to loved ones, “Of course I won’t hurt myself,” but I never added, “But if a car comes right toward me I won’t move out of the way.”
    I started to come up from the bottom maybe ten months back. My ascent was slow and erratic and I did not trust it.
    The last few months were better and a few weeks ago I said to some friends, “Oh my God! I’m high!”
    Not on drugs. Just on being alive.
    First time in almost two years.
    I hope you can make paper chains of contentment.
    I hope you climb them to high places.

    Like

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