Wednesday, July 17, 2013

STEP 2

Late this afternoon, in the middle of the frantic madness that is my job, it all stopped in my head.

The surface noise of life disappeared. The creaking of the machinery in my head, the deafening hum of the world — it suddenly vanished, leaving complete silence and clarity in their wake. And I understood in an instant what I have to do.

Last night at the bar I watched a long table populated by colleagues. I studied their faces, watched them interact with each other. I saw what camaraderie means. I was outside of that loop, a non-presence at the head of the table, the shadow I have become.

Moloney texted and we talked for an hour. By the time I closed my eyes it was past 2 a.m. The dreams came fast and hard. I looked in the mirror and saw the hole at the tip of my tongue. It hurt. My oldest and closest friends were there. I asked them to help me. They laughed. I asked The Girl to help me. As she does in dreams these days, she tells me to bite my tongue. I do. I wake up swallowing blood and crying, and I let myself do it for more than 10 minutes. Because I know what comes next. Time for Step 2.

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