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I don't know what is happening to me

help please please

By The Food GuyPublished 4 months ago 12 min read
I don't know what is happening to me
Photo by Josh Nuttall on Unsplash

Last week I started to feel down due to the corona outbreak. I cannot understand why it bothers me exactly but since it got serious, my friends started to talk about it and send me info, so I started following the news. Since then I got more and more upset about the situation. Because of the severity of the problem last week, on Tuesday I was told not to come to work. We had to close restaurants to the public and started operating delivery and collection services only. It has hit me hard. Realizing that things are quite different at this moment in time.

In the same week, my housemates left because their work and university were closed. They went back home to be with their families for the upcoming lockdown. I was left alone and with no Wednesday prep work. Instead, I have been put on reduced hours for the rest of the week from Thursday. I have had trouble adjusting. I didn't feel like going to work. I didn't feel like getting out. I felt powerless to be useful and make the most of it. I definitely wanted to stay at home and just outlive the situation from a distance.

I went to work on Thursday. Things were changing and our small team needed all the help they could get. I felt weak in my legs. I wasn’t clear in my head. I just knew that I had to be there. I am part of it, people rely on me, inside work and outside. It was a stressful shift. I didn't expect that it is basically the same thing as cooking under pressure with the whole restaurant of people only alone. Knowing that the pick-up is on its way. There was a small period when I couldn't believe I was doing it, I was swearing out loud. I was very angry and stressed for a bit, up until we finished that large order. Once that was done it was fine. We continued as usual, I am in the kitchen, Alf delivering and Meg being a mission control. It actually went well. Good numbers even for the isolation Thursday.

At home, I felt that I need to stop doing this, that someone can replace me. I just couldn't be there. Once again I went to work because the team was small and there was no one who could replace me. One matey lives with his gran, which is a super huge risk if he lives in the house. Others are either busy or undertrained to take on Friday shifts. Once again we managed. We reduced the team one of us had to constantly fill the KP role and wash dishes. During the day we managed to do some prep and we had plenty of washing up to do after that. I was home late. Feeling ok. I was at work and I only felt dread of the crisis we were facing, breathing in short bursts. Spending time with the team was kind of fun when I didn't think about the outside.

I went to work again and again. I was tired. Even exhausted from the stress at work. The knowledge that I am a significant part of the successful day-to-day operation but also a contributor to the virus spread. My mind balanced between those two thoughts. I was giving myself plenty of time to sleep and tried doing something productive during the day. Most of the time I don't even know what I was doing. Nothing was making sense. I felt like my sanity was escaping me. I repeat I was exhausted physically from long hours of kitchen work, thinking about the situation we are facing and the usual stress.

Finally, on Sunday I went to unwind with my friends. See kind faces, chat about the troubles, and play some games. I needed that.

I felt hungover on Monday. Work hangover. My whole body was weak. My mind was shattered. I could rest for some time. I wanted to rest until the end of this shit we are into. Until it’s all done and in the past until I can feel that I am not evil. The same day I went to the shop. If I am going to hide, which I wanted to do, I would need some supplies. I bought plenty of food. Fresh and long-lasting. I wanted to make sure that I am not going out again any time soon. Ever? A couple of hours later I realised that I should have bought some soil. I have seeds I bought to sow but the package I ordered on the internet didn't arrive. It was also late March, almost too late to sow anything. I struggled for an hour to leave the house. I agree that I am only going to go outside, grab the soil, and come back without any exposure to other people. Long story short, I came back home with nothing.

On Monday there was a big announcement from BoJo about closing all the non-essential businesses. I thought I would finally be free to sit home and feel bad without escalating it any further.

Tuesday was more productive as I wasn't tired mentally and physically anymore. I decided to start with the old routine - to write, read, exercise, make food, etc. I started with that and the day was going smoothly until I got a message inviting me to another shift. I really wanted to decline, like many times before that. I thought it can't be that bad, there are only 2 of us left to do most of the cooking, so I should be in. Also how bad can it be? I managed to do it 3 days after I specifically told myself not to do that, so one more won't hurt. I was well rested and have been productive. I have been following my routine. Extra 5 hours of work won't harm anyone.

On Wednesday the day started strong. Routine. Stretching, cooking, writing. Healthy business. My mind was set to get out for work and do my best. I was proud of how much I can forget and ignore. My feelings were standing in my way. So I cycled to work. I was amazed by the number of people going for walks, cycling and shopping. I felt betrayed. I wasn't feeling good after all. It seeped into me that I am one of the "problems". I am not sitting at home. I am doing something non-essential. I came to work ruined by the fact that I have cheated myself and am going to continue doing that for the next 5 hours. I couldn't bring myself to lie or even hide how I feel. At least I wasn't vocal about it. The shift went fine. I got some updates about the past, present, and future of business.

At home, I felt broken. I couldn't believe we were still there. I saw so many people. Again and again, I kept thinking about the life that I live. Lying to myself, doing something out of my own interests, and supporting the development of a major health crisis. There was no excuse for what I have done. Getting home took longer than usual. I kept asking myself why am I feeling this way and why am I doing this.

At home I made myself some soothing lemon and ginger tea, my throat was ticklish. As I was going upstairs I kept thinking about the shower. Did I really need one after a relatively easy shift? I came to sit down on the bed and took my pants halfway down. It hit me that I am living a useless life. I wasn't doing right for myself and others. My contribution is shit. I repeated what I thought earlier - I am worse than shit. I also could not pinpoint why I started crying. My sobs were loud and silent. Breathing irregularly I was shaking. What was coming out of me? Snot and tears were dripping on my unbuttoned trousers. My body froze. It wasn't like anything I experienced in the past year. I knew that my dark state was back. I remember being frozen before, being mad at someone, not knowing what to do, wanting something else, being unable to achieve it. I was not in control. My mind and body were hijacked. The only movement was my lungs gasping for air, my body shaking and my mouth screaming in silent agony. I don't know how long it took. I felt cramps in my back and shoulders, my feet were numb. I sat there holding my knees. I could see and feel them, they were close, as my face kept dripping over the carpet, arms and legs. I started to think about stopping all of that. To move. To clean myself. I couldn't move. I have never realized how much of a hostage I am in those situations.

It wasn't the first time that I couldn't move, cried, or felt the void. It kept happening to me in difficult situations throughout my life. When I was cheated on in high school. When my friend was unsupportive. When I felt useless as a partner in my previous relationship. I cried many times. I have been in a stone of a body. I don't remember being in both of those states at the same time. I don't know how I got to any of those before. I just wanted some help. I always needed help. I couldn't scream for it, I couldn't let anyone in and I don't think I could have accepted it. It never came. I never got better with help. This time I have seen myself be useless to my own needs. Prisoner of my half-naked body, poisoned by my own mind. There was nothing that was coming.

I started to think that I had been in control all along. After I saw a counselor and discussed my problem I made myself believe that I can. Every single time. It could get messy, no doubt. But following the advice, I was ready to notice when I am losing it and take it under control. I was practicing it and it worked. I went through so many things feeling "normal". Finally being myself, not scared of what is to come.

It was different this time. Weirdly aware of how strong I am and still not able to do anything. Yet I could move my eyes. I didn't stop sobbing. The pain was excruciating, I was howling. Nothing. I have these dreams once in a while where I am chased. IT comes for me. Dread surrounds me. I am there looking at IT and I scream. Again and again. I want to move my body in defense, raise my arms, run, push; feel something - ready to be stabbed. I scream and nothing comes out. I open my mouth only a thin layer of air squeezes out. Later, I wake up. It feels very real to me, that moment of pain and weakness, un-physical. When I am awake I can barely make a sound. I am being followed by the nightmare. My lungs filled with concrete, unable to take it in. Until a moment later. I am back, and the flood of emotions drowns me. Sometimes I scream and hearing that sound soothes me.

I screamed noiselessly this time. Moving any muscle that I could feel moving in my body. Every other one was numb-en with pain. I have closed my eyes. Muscle by muscle I have raised my head away from my body. It feels like I didn't have one anymore. Imagining what it feels like to move toes and fingers I pushed for the action. Little by little I have raised my back. That was progress. I could wait or I could force myself forward. I said to myself that I will do anything. I started to bite my lip. I wanted to feel something else. Taste of blood. Hurt. I need control. I cried because no matter how much I bit the blood didn't come. Was I unable to make a painful decision to save my life? I thought it was probably true. I also didn't want to give up. I screamed again knowing full well that no one is coming, I needed to hear it. I have finally lowered my head to see what progress I made on moving any of my body. I saw a big toe twitch. I focused all my energy on that toe. It did it again. I started laughing. I could do that. That was all I needed. One toe at a time, screaming, gasping for more air, making small movements I was I again.

I touched my knee with my hand. It was real. All of it was real. I felt my body. The pain was still there. Deep marks on my legs, where my arm had been. I was watching myself move. Through my newly acquired happiness, I felt sadness. What if it comes back again? Why can I feel pain but can't move? Who am I? Is it ever going to stop happening to me? I felt like it was a dream, a real nightmare. Things didn't look usual, walls, cupboards, clothes, all around me it was like it was a day ago. I can't tell what it was. I didn't want to lie, I was afraid to lose it again. I was completely drained. Breathing heavily I set myself to wash my face first and then get a shower. I need it. I felt water on my body and it was like another dream. Unreal. It didn't feel right. I couldn't think any longer. Everything else was just a reflex. When I was about to close the door I caught myself being afraid to be locked inside so I left a gap. I let myself stand in the shower for an awfully long time but it still didn't feel "normal". Every sensation was foreign. I got dressed and got downstairs to drink tea. Icy to touch, I downed it. I was tired and thirsty.

My life was a horror.

I don't have any energy left to enjoy it.


About the Creator

The Food Guy

I read about food politics like it's a Harry Potter.

Eating my way through culture and cooking up the future.

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