For the first time in a long time I’m going to bed by myself. That doesn’t mean that I’m sleeping alone; what it does mean is that I’m going upstairs, changing my clothes, and getting into bed by myself. It has been three and half months since I have been home after my seizures. For all that time we’ve had a woman come down me into bed. Last week, though, I told Deb that I didn’t need her to come anymore. I feel ready to get into bed by myself. That may not seem like a big feat to anyone else, but for me it has been very difficult to get to this point. I have been weak. I have been disoriented. And I have been afraid of falling.

What does it mean to feel unable to fend for oneself? It means fear. It means loneliness. It means a sense of littleness. By littleness I mean that I have felt in adequate, unimportant, and insignificant in others’ lives. I have felt like others means something in this world, but that I am simply hanging on to others’ lives. That makes me feel alone. That makes me feel unloved. That makes me feel alone. How many times have I said “alone” in this paragraph? As many times as it takes to convey my feeling of being alone in this world. I can’t remember anything, so I end up feeling like no one has come to this house; feeling like I haven’t left the house; feeling like I will never leave this house again.

As I think I’ve said before, I have no memory. That reality intensifies this feeling of inadequacy because I feel like I have to ask the same questions over and over again. I simply can’t remember. My grandfather used to say that his mind was a sieve. Whatever went in went out. That’s my experience of the world right now. I forget where I’ve been. I forget who’s been here. I forget everything. As a result, I am alone – at least I feel alone.

One thing I remember is that when I was well people used to tell me that I needed to learn to live in the present. If I believed in a divine power I would believe that this problem with my memory is a lesson: live in the present and embrace it like there’s nothing else. That’s what I feel; there simply is nothing but the present. That said, I don’t believe in a divine power. I believe we have what we have here in this life; that said, I do believe that this is a lesson: I have what I have right now, in this place, with these people. The only past I have is the distant past, and that will simply have to do.

I always feel that when I’m writing an essay I have to bring it to some kind of neat conclusion. I can’t think of one for this essay, though. The fact is, that I’m simply putting it out there, saying it out loud, sharing it so that I don’t feel so alone with this reality. I am tired now because I keep working to remember. That screws me up time and time again. For instance, I have been telling myself over and over again today that I need to remember to get Dixie cups and Biotene. At some point today Jonathan got both of these items for me, but I don’t remember that, so the repetition confused me and kept me from remembering that he got them. I simply don’t know what to do.

One thought on “Going To Bed
  1. Thank you for sharing your insights as they come to you, with such honesty and integrity. You help me understand not only your experience but also my mother’s. And maybe a little bit of my own. I surely agree that feeling powerless and insignificant are terrible, belittling ways to feel.

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