posted on Oct, 31 2011 @ 10:22 PM
From the moment I was born, I was doomed to die. This has always been the deal with life. When I was just a child - no more than two - I did not
have such focus and attention on death and dying, but even then there seemed to be a particular doom and gloom to my little life. By the time I was
four years old, I had come to understand death in the way mortals do. Jack, our dog, had died. He was run over by a car while I was in the front
lawn playing with him. We were playing fetch,and it was I who had thrown the stick out into the street as an approaching car came just as Jack leaped
out for it. I watched as the oncoming car hit Jack, and watched as Jack hung on for dear life, and watched as the life in Jack's eyes mysteriously
left him, and then Jack was dead.
My parents had tried to explain what had happened to Jack, but how do you explain death to a four year old? In truth, I didn't feel I need any
explanation. I somehow seemed to understand what had happened, and that the seeming finality of it all was really just a transitory stage and that
somewhere Jack, or his spirit...his soul...was alive and well. Well, not alive in any biological sense (unless he had come back to inhabit some other
body) but Jack's soul was still in existence even Jack's body wasn't.
I don't really remember much of Jack today, other than I watched him die and that I feel some sense of guilt for his death. What I do remember is
that Jack's death marked the beginning of my dreams.
I began to dream of apocalypses and of Hell. Not the hell brought on by two drunk parents constantly screaming and fighting. I mean Hell with a
capital H. Hell proper. My parents, of course, were not any kind of drunks, they were Catholic drunks, so my understanding of Hell...Hell
proper...was instilled into me at an early age, so I have - in my adult years - always assumed that my dreams of Hell were simply just my subconscious
making sense out of nonsensical legends and strange mythologies.
The thing is...the thing is, after about the age of ten, I stopped going to church, and was never really all that religious. I don't know why I keep
dreaming of Hell, only that I do. Not Hell as in some devilishly red demon with a goatee and horns Hell. Not fire and brimstone Hell. This is not
the Hell that pops up in my dreams, and to be honest, I am not sure I could describe the Hell in my dreams any more than I could describe what some
distant undiscovered planet looks like. I just know that what I am experiencing in my dreams is Hell.
The deep seeded agonizing despair kind of Hell that in someways resembled my own life growing up, but not in any physical sense, only in the emotional
sense. Growing up with my drunk parents wasn't always hell. They weren't always drunk...or, at least not always so visibly drunk. They weren't
always abusive...or at least not always so abusive as anyone outside of the family would notice, but they were always, in some form or another,
unhappy. Not at all shiny happy people, they were gloomy tragic figures, just as I am today. The only difference is I don't drink alcohol, but
foregoing booze never did anything to stave off the depression. What Styron called "the velvet pain".
Velvet pain is a good term for depression and in someways might best describe the interiors of the Hell that keeps popping up in my dreams. Not that
this Hell is upholstered with velvet walls or anything, only that the despair felt among the souls who inhabit this Hell seem to desperately cling to
that despair as if it is some necessary appendage to keep them functioning. Maybe that is it, that the Hell of my dreams is upholstered with the
angst and dread of the souls who inhabit it. More than this, those inhabiting this Hell are not residing there because of any tangible guilt or
atrocity, but are there out of some morbid choice.
Desperate unhappy people who choose to reside in a place called Hell, built with the bricks and mortar of deviated emotions and general malaise, this
is the Hell of my dreams. The walls of my dreamy steamy Hell are painted - or is wall paper? - with the agonized moans of despair. The floors tiled
with anger and rage...red rage...blood red rage...much like my own emotional state these days...since I was four. Can you imagine a rage filled angst
driven four year old? I can't, and yet, it seems as if this is who I was. Certainly who I have become, but it seems to be who I have been since
Jack died. No relation, really, to his death, just that somewhere around this time, life became a daily struggle with doom and gloom.
When I was eleven years old, my father left. Just up and disappeared as if he never really existed at all. No one knew where he was, or if they did,
no one would tell me. My mother seemed to want to blame me, or blame whomever was closest to her, which was me, so for all intents and purposes, it
was, in my mothers eyes, my fault that he left us. I do not know what I might have done to cause this, but my mother despised me just the same.
Drunken hate filled rants about how useless I am...was...am...
When I was old enough to leave, at sixteen, I left, and a few years later I began the search for my father. I never found him. Years spent searching
for a father that no longer existed...maybe never did...only to come up fatherless, just as I have been since I was eleven. I stopped searching for
him years ago now, but in my heart, I still want to find him and ask him why he left, and how it was that I was to blame. I imagine he smiles softly,
when I find him in my imagination, and explains that it had nothing to do with me, and that he loved me very much, but that the relationship between
he and my mother was just too toxic for him to stay. I imagine more in my imagination, but even there, in my imagination, the explanations never put
an ease to my guilt, to my dread, and to my utter shame.
The shame of being me. This is the shame I struggle to live with, and most days, in this struggle, the shame wins, and I lose. These are my
apocalyptic dreams, this is my apocalyptic life. Every day is a new beginning, and each day is the end of the world. A world of hope smashed to
smithereens by some oncoming comet, or some unseen dark star, or ended by humanity's own desire for self destruction, no matter how it ends, the
world always ends, each and every day. This is why I hate to sleep. I don't want the world to end again.
I keep thinking that maybe tomorrow I will be happy. I keep trying to be happy today, but I don't know how. I would look to others to duplicate
their happiness, but I am fairly certain I have never met a happy person. I couldn't even begin to tell you what one looks like. Everyone I meet is
filled with rage, despair, and way too much doubt. It is as if that strange and wondrous acronymistic "TPTB" are not only intent on killing our
physical bodies, but are hell bent on crushing our spirits so that if and when we return in a new body, we are more broken than the last time we
inhabited a body.
Of course, that kind of talk is tin foil hat talk. I do not want to live a life filled with rage and despair, so I have decided that my call to
adventure is to be happy! Thus far, I remain a tragic hero in this tale, but I continue to find ways to escape the Hell of my dreams...the Hell of my
life, and somehow just find a way to start living life. No apocalypses, just days of happiness.