But my defence sends me into a spin. I feel like that lost sock tumbling around in the machine. Please stop spinning…please stop spinning. You see a good sturdy defence is supposed to save you from harm. My shield stands strong and yet splinters have invaded my skin and sink into my heart with a snarl. Where did they come from? I don’t understand. Please stop spinning.
But I am not the only person wounded on this battlefield. Everyone is dying. There isn’t one single person who is on top. Nobody is smiling. Everyone is snarling and everyone is lost. Why can’t I stop defending myself? I know it’s instinctive, but now I realise this truth, then why can’t I just stop it. I tell myself to stop smoking and it works. I tell myself to stop drinking and it works. Why can’t I stop defending myself! I am no longer Chinese Japanese Don’t Forget to Wash Your Knees. I am 38-years old and that little boy. That boy who was different from all of the other boys – no longer exists. It’s me now. Not him. I am in charge of this body – no one but me.
Or am I? Has society done a better job on me than I first thought? Am I still trapped in the illusory prison of the world? It’s like a hypnagogic hallucination. I realise that I am not in the real world, but try as I might I cannot wake up. I can see. The eyeballs roll like the sock that tumbles and I can see. Everyone around me is poking and prodding and sneering. But I can’t move. I am stuck. I am drowning in my own REM sleep. I can’t even close my eyelids to hide from the pain. I can’t stem the simple flow of tears.
It’s simple. Just tell yourself to stop defending. Just accept the situation for what it is. Nobody is in this to hurt you. Those closest to you love you. They would never do anything to hurt you. Look…look…none of them are holding any weapons. People enter relationships because they want love not angst. They want to writhe in a bed, not in a mass of blood and guts. With no intention there is no weapon. Touch it. Go on touch it. See you cannot bleed. It’s as blunt as your voice when you try to defend.
But I try. I really do. I don’t want to defend. It tires me and makes me ill. I can feel my cells and they scream in agony. Have you any idea what the sound of a trillion screaming cells can do to you? Have you? Have you? I can’t keep them quiet. The mute button has broken and I don’t know how to fix it. My father-in-law used to be able to fix everything, but he is not here anymore either, another victim of the curse of the never-ending defence.
I stare and I take on the face of someone else. I lose my identity. Face…off. Shake it. Shake it. Wiggle those lips. Stillness. Get it together. Grit those teeth and get back into the fucking dirt. Go on you can do it. Remember the blade cannot cut if you don’t think it is real. Just swallow that fucking pride. Swallow it you stupid egotistical little man! Don’t you fucking get it? You don’t win by defending you only lose. Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. What a fucking idiot you have become. Don’t you see the trick? Come on son. You saw the ingenious traps that were laced with alcohol and nicotine. You sorted those bad boys out. You have even spied the chameleonic trap of sugar. So look again, use all of your experience and know how. You need it now more than ever.
LOOK! LOOK! LOOK!
I see it. I do see it. I defend and it dies. I defend and it dies. But I don’t know how to stop. I am a runaway train and my cargo is my past. I am who I am. I have changed so much, but this one…but this one.
Are you giving up Chinese Japanese Don’t Forget to Wash Your Knees? Hahahahaha…he’s giving up. Poor little baby doesn’t know what to do.
Suck it in. Deep breath. Crick that Neck. Drop the shield it’s time to get back in the trenches. It’s time to beat this thing. I am not giving up. No fucking way. You don’t think I can defeat you? I can. I know I can. It’s going to take time but I will win there is no doubting that.
I know my defences cause irreparable harm. I beg for forgiveness from everyone who carries a scar caused by my ineptitude in this area. I cannot go back and change what I have done. But I promise to try my very best not to do it again.
Photo cc @ flickr Jeffdalt